State lawmakers are warning economic development leaders that giving too much weight to big salaries could bias the new Iowa Values fund against rural business. While the bill authoritizing the fund didn’t include a wage requirement, the board handing out the Values Fund money has written rules that give preference to businesses that pay “high wages.” Republican Representative David Heaton of Mount Pleasant says rural communities can’t pay the rates city employers offer. Heaton says the Values Fund shouldn’t be targeted to urban areas, because rural Iowa’s struggling and needs opportunities to grow, too. Heaton wonders what “high wages” mean as there’s no way southeastern Iowa could attract businesses if they make them pay the kind of starting wage that’s prevalent in largest cities like Des Moines. Senator Paul McKinley, a Republican from Chariton, says the rules don’t seem to offer much to entrepreneurial startups, and he’s also concerned that language in the grant rules seems to give preference to three major areas of business — life sciences, advanced manufacturing, and information technology. He says that’s “picking winners and losers,” something the Legislature’s Administrative Rules Review Committee didn’t want to do but which is coming back into the process. The chair of the Iowa Values Fund is former Iowa Bankers Association leader Holmes Foster, who says the rules were written quickly so the board could give money to Wells Fargo soon after the legislation was approved, but the board will continue to tweak those rules. Foster says the rules are likely to have some wage requirement, but nothing specific as to yearly or hourly salary or wages. And Foster says the board WILL consider businesses outside the areas of life-sciences, advanced manufacturing or information technology, too.
- Meandering male moose seen in Sioux County
- Repairs made to northwest Iowa lake’s carp barrier
- Nunn criticizes fellow Republicans blocking votes on budget bills
- New book guides locals and visitors alike to ‘secret’ Iowa attractions
- Congresswoman Hinson says Farm Bill won’t be impacted if government shuts down
FOLLOW US ON TWITTER
UNI receives grant to turn old photos into interactive exhibit
UNI receives grant to turn old photos into interactive exhibit - Radio Iowa
An archival photography project at the University of Northern Iowa has landed a federal grant to help its users ...
Home test - Radio Iowa
Unhealthy air detected in parts of the state from Canadian wildfire smoke
Unhealthy air detected in parts of the state from Canadian wildfire smoke - Radio Iowa
The wildfire smoke from Canada is back over Iowa once again. Brian Hutchins at the DNR Air Quality Bureau says ...
Banks in Sioux, Lyon County the target of check cashing fraud
Banks in Sioux, Lyon County the target of check cashing fraud - Radio Iowa
The Sioux and Lyon County Sheriff Departments are working with local police trying to identify individuals involved ...