June 13, 2019
Gov. Reynolds, Lt. Gov. Gregg Address ABI Conference
The governor and the lieutenant governor spoke to more than 600 attendees at ABI’s annual conference in Ames last Wednesday. During their remarks, both Gov. Reynolds and Lt. Gov. Gregg acknowledged the work of ABI members as it relates to workforce initiatives. The governor talked about Future Ready Iowa and the Employer Innovation Fund, while the lieutenant governor focused his remarks on Empower Rural Iowa. Read more .

Senate Republicans Announce Committee Leadership Changes
Sen. Dan Dawson (R-Council Bluffs) has been named Chairman of the Commerce Committee. He replaces Sen. Jake Chapman (R-Adel). Sen. Chapman has been named the Chairman of the Senate Ways and Means Committee. He  replaces  Sen. Randy Feenstra (R-Hull), who is running in the 4th Congressional District Republican primary. Read more .

Employer Innovation Fund and Radiation Fees Considered at ARRC
Every month throughout the year, the Administrative Rules Review Committee meets at the Capitol to consider rules proposed by agencies in the executive branch. The rules are typically put forward to implement the bills passed by the Legislature and signed by the governor. ABI staff usually attends the monthly meeting to ensure rules that will affect ABI members are not more stringent than the law allows. Read more .

State Board and Commission Vacancies
The Iowa Workforce Development Board and the Iowa Vocational Rehabilitation Council are currently seeking applicants for open positions. The applicants must be business representatives with no party affiliation and can be from northwest, southwest or southeast Iowa. The Iowa Workforce Development Board reviews the list of high demand jobs and is instrumental in guidance to the agency when it comes to the implementation of Future Ready Iowa and WIOA. Read more .

Federal Spotlight: ABI Signs Onto Letter Calling for Repeal of the Cadillac Tax
ABI is one of 665 stakeholders that encouraged members of Congress to cosponsor bipartisan legislation that would repeal the “Cadillac tax” on high-cost employer-provided health care plans.  S. 684 , the Middle Class Health Benefits Tax Repeal Act of 2019, would eliminate the impending 40% excise tax. The tax, which was created under the Affordable Care Act, has been delayed multiple times by Congress and is currently slated to go into effect in 2022. Read more .

Save the Date: ABI Policy Committee Meetings
The annual ABI public policy development process kicked off last month with regional meetings around the state. The next step in the member-driven process is public policy committee meetings. The meetings, open to all members, are held in-person each year in Des Moines at the ABI office. Each meeting begins with lunch and a guest speaker, followed by a review of policy positions and discussion on key issues that could come up during the next legislative session. Check out the  ABI events calendar  to see the full schedule of meetings. Registration is now open, and speakers will be announced closer to the date!
Record 600+ Attend 2019 Taking Care of Business Conference
A record 600+ Iowa business leaders took the 2019 ABI Taking Care of Business Conference by storm last week in Ames.

Highlights included:
  • Keynote address from Pulitzer Prize-winning columnist for the Wall St. Journal Peggy Noonan
  • Insightful presentations from author/former NBA and Iowa State basketball player Paul Shirley and author/top-rated speaker and trainer Rowena Crosbie
  • Comments from Gov. Kim Reynolds and Lt. Gov. Adam Gregg
  • Chair's reception and dinner at the Sukup End Zone Club at Jack Trice Stadium

View photos from the conference.
2020 Conference Host City Preview: Cedar Rapids
Thanks to everyone who attended the 2019 Taking Care of Business Conference in Ames. Save the date, June 9-11, for the 2020 conference. And watch this preview for a taste of what's to come in next year's host city, Cedar Rapids.
Making the Mid-Year Review More Reward than Work
Mark K. Phillips
VP, Treasury Management Services
Bank Iowa

Because our best-laid plans often go awry, the mid-year business review is not only a good idea, it’s an essential best practice. When we consider the pace of change confronting nearly every sector, keeping a finger on the pulse of your strategy has arguably never been more important.

While there are many ways to approach a strategic review at the year’s mid-point, five components in particular can deliver especially meaningful insight. Read more .
New Apprenticeship Program Helps Miller Products Co. Build Stronger Future
Miller Products Company, an Iowa manufacturing staple for more than 80 years, is leading the charge to build a stronger manufacturing base in South-Central Iowa. A new apprentice program for employees is serving to create a workforce that meets the growing demand for CNC machined products well into the future. Read more .

Manpower Survey: Iowa Employers Expect to Hire at a Solid Pace
An active job market is forecasted for the third quarter of 2019 for Iowa as U.S. employers report the strongest outlook in 13 years. That's according to the most recent ManpowerGroup Employment Outlook Survey. Read the full news release .

Goodwill of Central Iowa Introduces Additions to Leadership Team, Board of Directors
Goodwill of Central Iowa continues to grow with significant additions to its leadership team. Ann Shelton joins the organization as chief financial officer, Eric Prosperi as director of commercial services and Justin Ruegg as human resources director. Read the full news release .

Iowa Workforce Development, Future Ready Iowa Announce Three New Funding Opportunities
More than $16 million in new funding became available through bills signed by Gov. Reynolds in May. Most of the money will fund these programs:

  • The Last Dollar Scholarship program, which prepares Iowans for high-demand jobs by paying tuition for those who enroll in one of more than 40 eligible programs.
  • Future Ready Iowa Grant program, which provides tuition support to Iowans who have completed at least two years of a four-year degree in a high-demand field.
  • Future Ready Iowa Employer Innovation Fund, a grant program to help communities carry out initiatives that address local workforce issues.

A communications toolkit is available  online  to help you learn about these opportunities.

Iowa Breaks Record for New Business Filings in a Single Month, Again
Secretary of State Paul Pate announced on Monday that Iowans set a record for most new business filings in a single month, for the second month in a row. During May 2019 Pate’s Business Services Division processed 2,512 new business ventures. The previous high, set in April, was 2,326. Read the full news release .