Developing our economy

KIMT News 3 – Legislators are meeting with those who help implement the very laws they vote on each session to brainstorm on economic development.

It’s all part of a discussion on north Iowa’s economic growth.

The idea is by bringing legislators together with area subcommittees, they can find ways to help attract more employers to the area and with that, comes more jobs.

According to Senator Steve Sodders of State Center, he sees the value behind taking part in these meetings.

There’s not one fix to anything so as we do things as far as education with pacing the gap money to get skilled workforce development, apprenticeship programs to get people upskilled and working in higher manufacturing jobs.

“There’s not one fix to anything, so we do things as far as education with pacing the gap money to get skilled workforce development, apprenticeship programs to get people upskilled and working in higher manufacturing jobs,” said Sodders.

“If you’re not creating these new types of jobs and you’re not moving forward with the technology and you’re not building the work force that goes with it, you’re going to slip back in this world. So their work is pretty crucial,” said Senator Bill Dotzler of Waterloo.

Across town, while the focus is still on improving business in our communities, some leaders are turning to overseas influences.

“The hope is that they’re making a business contact or two to make it worth their while and that they’re following up with that. Giving their pitch for their product or service,” said Kathy Rollefson, Executive Director of the Forest City Chamber of Commerce.

The Mason City and Forest City Chambers of Commerce are sponsoring the trip and believe bringing business leaders to unfamiliar cultures will help expose and educate them to global markets.

“Economies that are growing such as China, their population is growing and they are looking for American-made products and that type of deal just to complement their lifestyle”, said Rollefson.

As the focus from economic growth quickly turns to an emphasis on bringing more jobs to the area, Senator Sodders says it’s a matter of finding ways to attract more employers.

“When I first got into legislature someone told me don’t make Iowa what it’s not. We’re not going to put in a rain forest in Iowa because that’s not Iowa. What Iowa is, is a lot of recreational trails, things for people to do as a family and that’s kind of what we believe is the focus on as a part of all the other things that we should do to create jobs in Iowa,” said Sodders.

According to the latest national job reports, the country added more than 192,000 jobs in March.

However, the unemployment rate remained steady at 6.7 percent.

For more information on how your business can join the trip to China or Dubai, call the chamber office at:

641-585-2092

Trips are planned for Oct. 18-26 and Oct. 25-Nov. 1.

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