Iowa Business Council Announces 2022 Legislative Agenda
December 16, 2021
Iowa Business Council Announces
2022 Legislative Agenda
Policy Efforts Include Child Care, Competitive Tax Policy and Federal Immigration Reform
DES MOINES – The Iowa Business Council (IBC) has identified its 2022 legislative agenda. During the organization’s final meeting of the year, IBC members voted to focus on issues such as competitive tax policy, workforce development, child care and housing.
“The Iowa Business Council is focused on efforts that will help us attract, retain and re-engage a talented workforce. We are facing the most acute worker shortage in a generation. Now is the time to make Iowa a national leader by acting on core issues that prevent people from participating in our economy,” explains IBC Chair Tim Yaggi. "We look forward to working with both the General Assembly and the Governor to advance these priority areas and ensure Iowa remains a competitive place to work, live, and raise a family,” he adds.
The Iowa Business Council 2022 state legislative agenda includes:
- Child Care: As the state continues to recover from the pandemic, access to high quality, affordable child care has never been more important to Iowa’s families and the economy. Iowa leads the nation with both parents working outside the home, yet there is a shortfall of more than 350,000 child care slots in our state. In an effort to address these shortfalls and ensure childcare availability is not an impediment to Iowans entering and remaining in the workforce, the IBC supports the recommendations of the Iowa Child Care Taskforce.
- Competitive Tax Policy: To continue to strengthen Iowa’s economic climate, the IBC will remain engaged in efforts that provide a simple, transparent, and stable tax structure. The IBC will support continued efforts in 2022 to make Iowa’s tax code more competitive for all taxpayers. Iowa’s corporate and individual tax rate indexes continuously rank in the bottom twelve nationally. By improving our standing on these key metrics, Iowa companies would be able to offer more competitive compensation and benefits that will drive the attraction and retention of critically needed talent.
- Housing: The availability of adequate workforce housing directly impacts the economic climate in Iowa’s communities. To fill the jobs that growing businesses create, adequate housing stock is necessary to attract and retain workers. As the state continues to recover from the economic consequences of the pandemic, housing is poised to be a vital catalyst for expanded economic growth and development.
- Workforce Development: The IBC supports innovative policies that lead to an increase in Iowa’s talent pipeline. We will continue to support investments in the Future Ready Iowa initiative and other work-based learning efforts within the K-12 system that helps develop and prepare students for the jobs of tomorrow.
As Iowa’s workforce continues to be limited across all industry sectors, the IBC also supports federal immigration reform and modernization as an effective tool to bolster economic development and expansion. Increasing caps, expediting processing and providing efficient opportunities to retain foreign born talent who were educated throughout Iowa’s higher educational system are all commonsense approaches that will enhance Iowa’s workforce and lay the foundation or future prosperity.
IBC Executive Director Joe Murphy notes, “Despite the fact that two-thirds of Iowa counties hit their population peak by 1950, our member companies continue to operate in all 99 counties. The inability to fill jobs due to the talent shortage will cause our economy to suffer. If we want employers to remain in our state, we must aggressively grow our population throughout Iowa. Immigration should play an important role in our future workforce strategies.”
About the Iowa Business Council
The Iowa Business Council (IBC) is a nonpartisan, nonprofit organization whose 22 members are the chief decision makers of major Iowa employers. One in six jobs in Iowa are tied to an IBC company. IBC member companies have invested billions of dollars of capital in Iowa's commercial infrastructure; lead the way in technology innovation, R&D, and grants procured; and are often the driving financial and volunteer forces behind philanthropic efforts all over the state.
IBC member companies include: Ruan Transportation Management Systems; Vermeer Corporation; Iowa Bankers Association; Alliant Energy; Casey’s General Stores, Inc.; Collins Aerospace; Corteva Agriscience; Deere & Company; Fareway Stores, Inc.; HNI Corporation; Hy-Vee, Inc., Kent Corporation; Mercy Health Network; Meredith Corporation; MidAmerican Energy Company; Pella Corporation; Principal; The Weitz Company; The University of Iowa Health Care; UnityPoint Health; Wellmark Blue Cross Blue Shield of Iowa; and Wells Enterprises, Inc.