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August 25th, 2010

Branstad Unveils Latest Jobs Proposal

Former Gov. Terry Branstad, along with lieutenant governor nominee Sen. Kim Reynolds, this afternoon unveiled his latest policy proposal for job creation in Iowa.

Stressing the need to market Iowa more aggressively, Branstad says he will form “IGNITE” teams throughout the state, and initiate the Iowa Network of Entrepreneurial Transplants (INET) to identify key former Iowans in targeted businesses and industries around the country and world.

The policy is found here:

“Economic development, at its core, is about identifying and creating opportunities and to do that we must aggressively sell our state,” said Branstad. “It is about selling the merits of expanding their business in Iowa to existing in-state employers and touting the benefits of Iowa to prospective out-of-state companies.”

Last week, Gov. Branstad unveiled his plans for a public/private partnership, called the Iowa Partnership for Economic Prosperity (IPEP) to replace the existing Department of Economic Development. Gov. Branstad will use this new public-private partnership to forge teams to visit with employers across Iowa and to sell our state to prospective companies across the country and the world.

The IGNITE teams will be comprised of economic development professionals from around the state teamed with current Iowa employers who are willing to periodically give of their time. IPEP professionals will lead and staff the teams and will start with a focus on industries poised for growth in Iowa including: advanced manufacturing, value added agriculture, biotechnology, insurance and financial services.

“Iowa has produced thousands of successful individuals who have left our state and found success with companies outside of Iowa,” said Reynolds. “However, these former Iowans still know the benefits of doing business here and many would return to Iowa if the right opportunities were available. We must take advantage of these former Iowans and their networks.  IPEP will develop this network of former Iowans to increase the scope of our efforts to reach and attract economic development opportunities around the globe.”

INET will serve several purposes.  As Governor Branstad’s administration implements changes that better Iowa’s business climate he will need a broad base of well-networked individuals around the globe spreading the news about Iowa.  Additionally, and perhaps more importantly, that same network will serve as Iowa’s eyes and ears to alert IPEP about high quality employers looking for a place to expand.

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The Iowa Republican

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