Investment in Iowa is helping to ensure the state maintains one of the lowest unemployment rates in the country. Over the last two years, companies have committed over $5 billion in private sector investments across the Hawkeye State. This commercial activity is being encouraged by federal laws, which are providing billions of dollars for rebuilding infrastructure and incentivizing the growth of new cleaner manufacturing here in Iowa and across the United States. The new funding is also helping farmers lead conservation efforts on their lands. These investments are creating good-paying jobs for a variety of levels of education. In this article, we’ll take a closer look at how the Infrastructure, Investment, and Jobs Act and the Inflation Reduction Act (IRA) are supporting new economic activity in the state.
To date, the bipartisan infrastructure law is expected to bring $2.3 billion to Iowa for a range of projects including roads, bridges, public transit, ports, airports, and clean water. In addition, more than 80,000 homes are already accessing affordable high-speed internet thanks to the law. Projects that have won funding include Eastern Iowa Airport in Cedar Rapids, which will get $20 million to modernize the passenger terminal and add gates, and La Port Road in Waterloo, where $20 million will pay for sidewalks, bicycle trails, and public transit infrastructure.
At the same time, funding in the Inflation Reduction Act is helping Iowa establish itself as a capital of clean energy generation. New projects worth around $5 billion have been announced in Iowa in the last few months. Together, they will generate electricity from solar and wind, and create hundreds of jobs during construction and ongoing operations, creating exciting new opportunities for Iowans.
Government support for Iowa’s almost 85,000 farms is also increasing, with extra money for farmers to put in place natural climate solutions they know work, to reward their stewardship of the land. The IRA also supports Iowa corn growers, with $500 million for nationwide biofuel infrastructure, helping expand consumer access to ethanol-based fuels.
Overall, the new law is expected to bring almost $25 billion of investment in large-scale clean power generation and storage to Iowa by 2030. Significant tax credits are expected to create jobs in various sectors, including solar, wind, batteries and storage, and other sustainable industries. This includes incentives for businesses that pay a prevailing wage, which is expected to support above-average wages for Iowa workers.
Iowa’s continued economic growth, low unemployment, and opportunities for its workers are a testament to its people, businesses, and the power of smart investments. The bipartisan infrastructure law, the Inflation Reduction Act of 2022, and Iowans’ ingenuity and hard work have created a thriving environment for businesses and job seekers alike.