Business & Economy
Community Job Fair PDF Print E-mail
News Releases - Business & Economy
Written by Dawn L. Robinson   
Monday, 10 September 2012 13:41

Loebsack Statement on Department of Labor’s August Jobs Report PDF Print E-mail
News Releases - Business & Economy
Written by Joe Hand   
Sunday, 09 September 2012 13:23

Personally calls on President to push Congress to act

Washington, D.C. - Congressman Dave Loebsack today issued the following statement in response to the Department of Labor’s announcement that the unemployment rate was 8.1 percent in August and 96,000 jobs were added.

“The ongoing political games have gotten us nowhere. Today’s report serves as another reminder that in order for anything to get accomplished that actually improves our economy, Congress must work together.

“The House Republicans have shown an utter lack of leadership. It isn’t leadership when you continually put politics before people and refuse to bring a comprehensive jobs package up for a vote.  Leadership isn’t holding hostage tax cuts for middle class families when we all agree they must be passed.  Leadership isn’t taking our economy up to the brink of collapsing last summer by refusing to deal with the debt ceiling, and pushing it up against a fiscal cliff this fall. Leadership isn’t taking a five-week vacation when Iowans are dealing with the worst drought in 60 years without passing a reformed farm bill.  Iowans expect their leaders to work until the job is complete and the leaders of this Congress have refused to even begin their work.  The games must end and the work must begin.”


Today, in a face-to-face meeting, Loebsack also personally urged President Obama to use his position to push Congressional action on multiple critical issues that affect our economy, including the farm bill, a comprehensive jobs package, wind energy tax credit, sequestration, and middle class tax cuts.  He stressed the importance of action and the dire consequences if no action is taken.  A copy of the letter he presented to the President can be found here.   


American Jobs Act Continually Blocked by Republicans. And Here Are The Results: PDF Print E-mail
News Releases - Business & Economy
Written by Maureen Groah   
Sunday, 09 September 2012 13:21

Exactly a year ago, President Obama laid out a series of policy proposals known collectively as the American Jobs Act. The plan included stimulus spending in the form of immediate infrastructure investments, tax credits for working Americans and employers to encourage consumer spending and job growth, and efforts to shore up state and local budgets to prevent further layoffs of teachers, firefighters, police officers, and other public safety officials.

The American Jobs Act never became law, however, because Republicans opposed it from the start, blasting it as another form of “failed stimulus” that wouldn’t help the economy. (They ignored the fact that the first “failed stimulus,” the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act, wasn’t a failure at all.) One month later, the GOP blocked the bill in the Senate, preventing the creation of more than a million jobs and the added growth that multiple economists predicted would occur if the bill passed:

–Moody’s Analytics estimated the American Jobs Act would create 1.9 million jobs and add two percent to gross domestic product.

–The Economic Policy Institute estimated it would create 2.6 million jobs and protect an addition 1.6 million existing jobs.

–Macroeconomic Advisers predicted it would create 2.1 million jobs and boost GDP by 1.5 percent.

–Goldman Sachs estimated it would add 1.5 percent to GDP.

The American economy has continued to recover since the American Jobs Act failed. It added 96,000 jobs last month, according to today’s Bureau of Labor Statistics report, making August the 30th consecutive month in which the private sector has grown. But growth could have been faster: the public sector shed 7,000 jobs in August, adding to the more 700,000 it has lost since 2009. That includes hundreds of thousands of teachersand educators, firefighters, and police officers. Had the public sector spent the last three years growing at its previous rate, unemployment would be at least a full point lower than it is now.

The American Jobs Act and policies like it would have unquestionably boosted job creation and economic growth, a stark contrast to the tax-cutting policies put forth by congressional Republicans, whose “job creation” bills would have actually destroyed thousands of jobs. Republicans nevertheless continue to ignore economists and basic economics, instead pushing supply-side tax policies that have repeatedly failed to boost job creation and economic growth.

Branstad, Reynolds celebrate largest capital investment in Iowa history, calls for Iowa income tax reform PDF Print E-mail
News Releases - Business & Economy
Written by Governor Branstad's Office   
Sunday, 09 September 2012 12:33

(DES MOINES) – Branstad and Lt. Gov. Reynolds celebrated the single largest capital investment project in the history of the state and called on lawmakers to turn their focus to income tax reform during the next legislative session. They joined representatives of the Iowa Fertilizer Company to announce their final selection of a Lee County site for their $1.4 billion project that will create 165 permanent jobs and more than 2,000 construction-related jobs.

To successfully compete for this project, Iowa had to offer incentives to overcome its current corporate income tax structure.  The governor used this project as an example of why tax reform is necessary.

“If our income tax structure was more competitive, we would be better able to compete for job and capital investment creation projects like this one. It also will level the playing field for our existing Iowa companies, allowing them to grow and create even more jobs,” said Branstad.

Iowa Fertilizer Company is a subsidiary of Orascom Construction Industries, one of the world's largest fertilizer producers.  The new plant would supply needed ammonia and other nitrogen fertilizers to farmers in Iowa and the Midwest.   


Lt. Governor Reynolds added, “In addition to the jobs and massive capital investment this project will mean for Iowa, it also will have a tremendous impact for our ag economy. In fact, when this fertilizer plant comes online, it could save Iowa farmers hundreds of millions of dollars annually.”

In February 2012, the Iowa Economic Development Authority (IEDA) Board awarded Iowa Fertilizer Company incentives to locate in Lee County, Iowa. Due to some unforeseen challenges with the original site, the company resumed its search for a suitable location and was pursued by other states to locate outside of Iowa. 

Earlier today, the IEDA Board met to amend its original award to ensure Iowa would win this project. The amendment that was passed includes an increase to the investment tax credit portion of the High Quality Jobs award, increasing the total tax credits to $57.5 million. The IEDA board will also be asked to consider future amendments in FY14 and FY15 to increase the ITC portion of the award by $25 million in each of those years. If the board passes those amendments, the final award to Iowa Fertilizer Co. would amount to $100 million of tax credits. The direct financial assistance award remains unchanged at $1.6 million (half loan, half forgivable loan). 


USDA Information Available for You PDF Print E-mail
News Releases - Business & Economy
Written by USDA Office of Communications   
Friday, 07 September 2012 12:51

Have you ever struggled to find information on or someone to talk to about a USDA program?

The USDA has developed a guide to organic and organic-related programs, and is implementing a department-wide training program to improve service to current and prospective organic stakeholders.

USDA has also developed a toolkit that helps farmers and businesses answer the question, "is organic an option for me?"

Organic Literacy Initiative

In response to requests from the organic community, USDA developed these materials to help connect current and prospective organic operations with appropriate USDA resources.


Through this effort, USDA staff will be better equipped to help current and prospective organic customers:

  • Obtain technical and financial assistance.
  • Insure crops and livestock.
  • Access and fund research.
  • Secure loans.
  • Develop conservation practices.
  • Find current organic price information.
  • Access local, regional, and international markets.

By 2015, the USDA hopes to have 20,000 certified organic farmers and businesses in the United States. We're well on our way to achieving this goal, but we're not there yet.

We hope you will use and share these materials widely, helping current and prospective organic operations fully benefit from USDA services.

View Guide to Organic and Organic-Related USDA Programs

Access All Organic Literacy Initiative Materials

Includes training and outreach materials

Are You a USDA Employee?

In order to credit your training and track USDA participation, please access the organic 101 and 201 courses through USDA's AgLearn system. However, AgLearn is currently down for routine maintenance until September 12th.

Once AgLearn is back online, USDA staff will be invited to access these online training modules.

In the meantime, we welcome you to:

Thank you for your patience and help supporting organic agriculture!

About the National Organic Program (NOP)

The NOP facilitates trade and ensures integrity of organic agricultural products by consistently implementing organic standards and enforcing compliance with the regulations throughout the world. Learn more.

About the NOP Organic Insider

The NOP Organic Insider is intended to inform the organic community on a wide range of NOP functions, including organic standards, accreditation and international activities, compliance and enforcement, the National Organic Standards Board, training events, and the Cost Share program.


You are receiving this email because you elected to receive selected updates from the USDA National Organic Program. You may manage your profile to receive additional updates on other NOP functions or unsubscribe at any time by using the links below.

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