Business & Economy
Braley Votes to Send Bipartisan “JOBS Act” to President’s Desk PDF Print E-mail
News Releases - Business & Economy
Written by Jeff Giertz   
Tuesday, 27 March 2012 13:27

Bill will help small businesses grow and expand

Washington, DC – Rep. Bruce Braley (IA-01) released the following statement today after voting to send a bill that will help small businesses expand and create jobs to the President’s desk:

"Iowans can’t afford any more gridlock or inaction from Congress on job creation.  Americans want to see politicians in Washington working together to get results.  They don’t care about partisan labels.

“That’s why I’ve voted twice to pass the JOBS Act.  It will reduce small business restrictions so they can get the capital they need to grow and expand.  I urge the President to sign this bill into law immediately.”

The Jumpstart Our Business Startups (JOBS) Act would make it easier for small businesses to raise capital to grow and expand their businesses by making changes to federal business regulations.  For more information on the bill, visit:

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Lt. Gov Simon: Illinois Main Street open for business PDF Print E-mail
News Releases - Business & Economy
Written by Kara Beach   
Tuesday, 27 March 2012 13:26
SPRINGFIELD – March 27, 2012. Ambassador to the Illinois Main Street Program, Lt. Governor Sheila Simon announced today that the program will begin accepting applications next month from communities interested in joining.

Illinois Main Street is administered by the Regional Outreach Division at the Illinois Department of Commerce and Economic Opportunity (DCEO) and offers its 45 designated communities technical assistance and training in how to revitalize traditional downtowns, neighborhood business districts, and urban corridors. The program, which has not accepted applications since 2009, is part of the national Main Street Program run by the National Trust for Historic Preservation Main Street Center. 

“I am happy to announce that Illinois Main Street is once again open for business,” Simon said while speaking to community members at the Illinois Main Street rally outside of the State Capitol. “I urge all communities searching for ways to revitalize their downtown areas to apply to Illinois Main Street, which is a proven way to spur reinvestment in a community.”  

Nationally, Main Street programs attract $27 of local investment for every $1 spent, according to data from the National Trust for Historic Preservation. In Illinois, the Main Street Program attracted an average of 10,000 volunteer hours to each member community in 2010, which represents an investment of over $220,000, according to DCEO.


“Moving forward, we will continue to utilize the strong partnerships that have been developed between the Illinois Main Street communities, the Department of Commerce and Economic Opportunity, Office of Regional Outreach, the Illinois Historic Preservation Agency and the Lt. Governor’s office to offer many mentoring and training opportunities related to business incentives, design services, and a vast array of other topics so crucial to the economic success of the Illinois Main Street Communities,” Illinois Main Street Coordinator Mitzi Brandenburg said.


Communities interested in applying to become a member of Illinois Main Street can visit The Illinois Main Street selection committee considers several factors when scoring an application, including level of financial support from local government, creation of a Main Street committee, a full-time executive director and existence of historic preservation ordinances. Illinois Main Street may select up to two new communities per year.

Renewal of the application process follows Governor Quinn’s signing last year of the Illinois Main Street Act, which formally placed Illinois Main Street under the purview of DCEO allowing the program to move forward after a transition period.



Three Illinois National Guardsmen launch product for Soldiers, babies PDF Print E-mail
News Releases - Business & Economy
Written by Staff Sgt Kassidy Snyder   
Tuesday, 27 March 2012 12:44

SPRINGFIELD, IL (03/27/2012)(readMedia)-- After multiple overseas deployments, three Illinois Army National Guardsmen came together to build a product that benefits both Soldiers and babies. Having no prior business experience, the Soldiers used educational resources to create the EasyGo dispenser.

"Being a Soldier and small business owner shows you the complexity and depth the Guard has to offer," said business co-founder Staff Sgt. Michael Pett of Chicago, with Recruiting and Retention Command. "Not only am I able to continue my service to the country, but can fulfill my dream of being a business owner."

The Soldiers signed up for a program through the University of Illinois-Urbana Champaign called Illinois' Launch. Through the program, they attended small business workshops and seminars and made several connections to help them along the way, said Pett.

"We are not engineers, graphic designers, nor can we draw a family of stick figures between the three of us," said Staff Sgt. Blake Schroedter of Newton, with Troop A, 2nd Squadron, 106th Cavalry Regiment in Pontiac. "We are a group of common guys, but visionaries who saw an issue and decided to fix it."

While deployed, Schroedter said he and other Soldiers had many frustrations with making an instant protein shake, a common source of nutrition for combat Soldiers. They tried cutting the tops off water bottles to make a funnel and used Ziploc bags and Tupperware for storage. What they needed was something portable and convenient to store, carry and dispense a pre-measured amount of protein powder.

After returning home from deployment, Schroedter along with Pett and Staff Sgt. Tony Genovese of Naperville, with Troop C, 2nd Squadron, 106th Cavalry Regiment in Aurora developed a prototype that evolved into the EasyGo Dispenser product lines.

"The evolution of the prototype lasted over a year with countless hours of phone conferences with our director of manufacturing, ensuring we accomplished our goals," said Schroedter. "I am excited for the day when I am at an airport or gym and I see a complete stranger utilizing our product."

After the initial prototype for the protein powder was created, the Soldiers developed a second dispenser to accommodate baby formula powder.

"Currently there are no military programs that promote entrepreneurship for Guardsmen that we are aware of," said Genovese. "One of our major long-term business goals is to create a program designed to aid military personnel in ventures similar to ours."

The Department of Defense launched a few programs that help disabled veterans and families of the wounded and fallen start businesses, but nothing specific for Guardsmen.

The Soldiers boast a young start-up company that offers a product durable enough for Soldiers to use on missions during war and gentle enough for parents to use for their babies at home.. The product was launched March 11 in Chicago. The first shipment of EasyGo PRO and Baby dispensers is due to arrive in August. For more information please visit

Demand a Change to the Tax Code PDF Print E-mail
News Releases - Business & Economy
Written by Cain Connection   
Tuesday, 27 March 2012 12:33
This is an incredibly urgent time in American history. We're facing record budget deficits, soaring energy costs, high unemployment and a decline in America's standing abroad.

Friends, Washington is broken and business as usual just won't cut it anymore. We need lasting reforms that change the very nature of our nation's capital. We need a Solutions Revolution!

A report released by the nonpartisan Congressional Research Service showed that there are over $1 trillion a year in tax loopholes for special interests in this country! Our tax code is so contorted and complicated, and it's impossible for the average American to understand. It discourages growth, investment and job creation. It’s a mess. It’s the enemy of American prosperity.
The solution is simple: America needs 9-9-9!

That's why, on April 16, the American people are going to show up on Capitol Hill to demand an end to a repressive tax code by demanding the simplicity and fairness of 9-9-9; no more handouts to special interests, no more confusing and frustrating tax preparation, and no more choking off job creation and economic growth

Herman Cain is also releasing in the coming weeks titled 9-9-9: An Army of Davids, which will lay out why we must rip up and replace the existing tax code – and the role that American patriots like you will need to play in making it happen.
But you don’t have to wait for April 16, or for the book, to hear from us on the issue of the tax code. Today we’ve release illustrates the problem in a way that, shall we say, will definitely get your attention. It all comes down to this: America needs to scrap the tax code that has been written by - and for - special interests, and replace it with 9-9-9!

When you support our Solutions Revolution, you support an organization that is relentlessly attacking this issue and won’t let up until Washington hears the voice of all of us. Please help us secure a brighter future for America and join our Solutions Revolution by making a donation today.

Grassley Receives Jobs Champion Award from the American Wind Energy Association PDF Print E-mail
News Releases - Business & Economy
Written by Grassley Press   
Tuesday, 27 March 2012 12:28
WASHINGTON – Senator Chuck Grassley today received a USA Wind Jobs Champion Award from the American Wind Energy Association for “his determined support and diligent work in helping to create and sustain U.S. jobs in the wind energy industry and its manufacturing supply chain.”

John Ragan of TPI Composites and Denise Bode of the American Wind Energy Association presented a commemorative plaque and wind turbine bolt as part of the award this afternoon.  TPI Composites operates a 316,000 square foot wind turbine blade facility in Newton.

Senator Grassley authored the legislation that established the tax credit for wind energy in 1992 as a way to provide a level playing field for this renewable resource against coal-fired and nuclear energy and to help grow an innovative energy industry.

Today, Grassley is the author of bipartisan legislation to extend the tax credit for two years after it expires at the end of the year.  If the tax credit lapses, an estimated 37,000 jobs could be lost across the country.

“Tax relief has proven successful in developing wind energy, and it ought to be continued with the degree of certainty needed for continued investment and development of this clean energy alternative,” Grassley said.  “Wind is free, inexhaustible, and environmentally friendly.  Conventional energy sources, including oil, gas and nuclear, enjoy countless tax incentives and many of them are permanent law.”

Nationwide, the wind energy industry supports 75,000 jobs and drives as much as $20 billion in private investment.  During the last five years, 35 percent of all new electric generation in the United States was wind.  There are nearly 400 wind-related manufacturing facilities today, compared with just 30 in 2004.

In Iowa, the wind energy industry employs 5,000 full-time workers, and there are major wind manufacturing facilities in Newton, West Branch, Cedar Rapids and Fort Madison.

Iowa generates 20 percent of its electricity needs from wind.  Wind energy powers the equivalent of a million homes.  There are nearly 3,000 utility-scale turbines in Iowa, and they generate lease payments to landowners worth $12.5 million every year.

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