state capitol cafoSlow job growth long term, but choppy performance over year

After a strong start to 2017 pushed Iowa to a new record on payroll job numbers, jobs took a slight dip in March. The state unemployment rate also declined slightly, to 3.1 percent.
IPP Iowa JobWatch statement
4/25/2017

Iowa's choppy economic performance has produced net gains in only six of the last 12 months. — IPP's Mike Owen

state capitol cafoIowa’s ‘Session of Suppression’ ends;
‘historic’ label no reason to boast


To describe the 2017 Iowa legislative session as “historic” is not a label its leaders should wear with pride. Iowans needed a legislative session that worked to raise family incomes and expand educational opportunity. Iowans had long demanded water-quality measures and accountability to scale back reckless tax breaks. Instead, lawmakers offered a litany of suppression — of wages, voting rights and workplace fairness.
Iowa Fiscal Partnership statement
4/22/2017

Legislators' attack on the Leopold Center at Iowa State University and other established scientific research came as a surprise. Read about this potential lost legacy.
David Osterberg blog post on Iowa Policy Points 4/19/2017
David Osterberg interview on KVFD-AM Fort Dodge 4/20/2017

As legislators did before him, Governor Branstad put ideology and spin over substantive discussion, collaboration and fact as he signed legislation that repealed predictability for low-income workers' paychecks and introduced fresh confusion for workers injured at work.
Iowa Policy Project statement 3/30/17


state capitol cafoLooking ahead: Real tax reform?

First, get past the myths about Iowa taxes on business;
Some would use savings to address non-existent issues

We should all welcome a serious discussion of tax reform in the Iowa Legislature, with one huge caveat: It should focus on real issues, not made-up ones. There are real issues: Business tax credits continue to grow much faster than other state spending, and contribute significantly to the budget shortfalls that have become an annual problem.
Iowa Fiscal Partnership policy brief
or 2-pg PDF 4/11/2017

Iowa Fiscal Partnership statement 3/20/2017
Iowa Fiscal Partnership snapshot on EITC 3/20/2017

A spotlight, not a floodlight, on business breaks 3/21/2017
Iowa Policy Points post by Mike Owen

Beware gimmicks in the Iowa Constitution A constitutional amendment to cap state spending — approved by the Senate that next year may be considered in the House — is a gimmick rather than real reform.
IFP Policy brief
3/27/2017

state capitol cafoBlowing away one complaint: Electric
costs down as wind production grows


New data show that as Iowa has built a wind-power industry, the electricity price per kilowatt hour continues to be significantly lower than the U.S. average — and is down in real terms from when the industry started in Iowa.
IPP backgrounder
or 2-pg PDF 3/30/2017
News release



state capitol cafoLeaving ACA in place saved insurance
for 150,000 Iowans on Medicaid expansion


Congressional leaders’ inability to pass a replacement for Obamacare removes, at least for the moment, any threat to the Medicaid expansion that was a critical part of increasing insurance coverage to more Iowans.
Click on the map to get the county numbers
3/25/2017

Pushing thousands of Iowans to the brink
About 230,000 fewer Iowans would have health coverage in 2019 if the law is repealed, including 25,000 children.
Iowa Fiscal Partnership report 1/19/17
News release

Cutting coverage for vulnerable, paying billions to the wealthiest
Congressional Republicans have proposed replacing the Affordable Care Act, known as Obamacare, with the American Health Care Act, or ACHA. In a nutshell, the House plan takes away coverage from 24 million people to help pay for $600 billion in tax cuts primarily for the wealthiest Americans, as well as drug and insurance companies.
Iowa Fiscal Partnership backgrounder
3/16/2017
2-page PDF
Blog post by Peter Fisher: Follow the money and see why rural, older Iowans fare worse in ACHA plan


Iowa Jobs: Good start


state capitol cafo










Iowa JobWatch 3/24/2017


Hodgepodge by design?


state capitol cafo










Iowa Policy Points 3/29/2017

It's public business


state capitol cafo










Iowa Policy Points 3/27/2017

CAFOs and the diminished defense of public health


In a legislative climate that increasingly bars local elected officials from protecting the health and financial security of Iowa residents, the means for individuals to respond on their own is threatened as well. The latest area: individuals challenging animal feeding operations in court.
Full report
3/22/2017
Executive summary
News release

Cedar Rapids Gazette coverage 3/23/17
IPPontheAirDavid Osterberg interview on KVFD-AM "Devine Intervention" program 3/23/17



chap20challengeAttacks on collective bargaining

Hidden costs, untold consequences for Iowans
Devastating consequences could be predicted before owa lawmakers and the outgoing Governor pursued dramatic changes to Iowa’s public sector collective bargaining law.
Full report 2/3/17
Printable version (9 pages)
Executive summary (2 pages)

Apples to Apples: A refresher or (2-page PDF)


chap20challengeThe realities about Iowa’s budget shortfall


There is no silver bullet, but you cannot solve Iowa’s chronic revenue shortages without addressing the state’s rampant spending on tax credits for corporations.

View the slides from our Moral Mondays Iowa! presentation at the State Capitol
3/13/17

chap20challengeMore of the same
— in fact,
millions more

Perks for the profitable
continue with research credit

Iowa’s lucrative research subsidy provided as much in 2016 to very large companies that do not pay Iowa state income tax as legislators recently approved as an increase in state school aid.
Iowa Fiscal Partnership summary (2 pages) 2/15/17


capitoldetailProgress scant on clean water

Nutrient strategy not producing results Iowans want
Despite voluntary conservation efforts, nutrient pollution remains problematic in the Mississippi River Basin and the Gulf of Mexico. There remains a widespread lack of understanding and acceptance of the connection between land management practices and the nutrient pollution of Iowa and U.S. waters.
Full report (PDF) 11/17/16
Executive summary (2-page PDF)
News release



jobsWhen work falls short, how do Iowa
policies help families meet needs?

Iowa can design child care assistance and other policies to “make work pay” for low-income working families.
Full report 11/15/16 NEW!
Full report printable PDF (20 pages)
Cliff effects backgrounder PDF (2 pages)
News release (or 2 page PDF)

Nearly 1 in 5 working households in Iowa do not earn enough to meet a basic needs family budget.
Part 2: Families Struggle to Meet Needs 7/6/16
Full report printable PDF (6 pages)
News release (or 2 page PDF)

Part 1: Basic Family Budgets 4/5/16
Full report printable PDF (21 pages)
News release (or 2 page PDF)


jobs
Faulty analysis on business taxes
Basic flaws remain in the latest state business tax climate index released by the Tax Foundation.

Iowa Policy Points blog post by Peter Fisher

Also see:
Fisher's GradingStates.org examination of Tax Foundation analysis

“What really drives state growth is the rate of new business formation. And what matters most for entrepreneurial vibrancy is the education level of the state’s residents.” — IPP’s Peter Fisher