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EQUIPMENT MANUFACTURERS SHARE PRIORITIES, CONCERNS WITH IOWA GOVERNOR

As the late President Teddy Roosevelt once said, “The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena, whose face is marred by dust and sweat and blood; who strives valiantly; who errs, who comes short again and again, because there is no effort without error and shortcoming;” and that is the approach the AEM Advocacy Team took when they headed to Iowa last week to meet with Governor Kim Reynolds. The Governor welcomed manufacturing leaders from across the Hawkeye State to the State Capitol for the second time to discuss the state of the equipment manufacturing industry.

Executives from a range of AEM member companies shared their thoughts on workforce development, funding for new broadband infrastructure, the benefits of precision agriculture technology, the implementation of the Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act, and rural development. The equipment manufacturing industry supports roughly 132,000 jobs across Iowa and contributes $18.3 billion to the state’s economy annually, according to AEM’s latest Economic Impact Report, released during CONEXPO-CON/AGG 2023. This makes Iowa the sixth largest state in terms of jobs supported by the equipment manufacturing industry, and the AEM Advocacy Team will be spending a lot of time in Iowa advocating the pro-manufacturing policies to ensure the long-term growth and prosperity of the industry.

“While the equipment manufacturing industry still faces challenges from national headwinds, we are doing everything we can at a state level to provide certainty and stability,” said Governor Reynolds. “Through tax cuts, removing barriers caused by red tape, and developing Iowa’s workforce for the future, we see Iowa standing strong as our growth in manufacturing outpaces the nation.”

Much of the discussion focused on workforce development and the shortage of skilled workers throughout the state of Iowa. The Governor and member company executives discussed policies that will help more Iowans find family-sustaining careers in the equipment manufacturing industry, including reducing barriers to postsecondary education and skills development, creating more pathways to good jobs and lifelong learning, as well as creating partnerships between post-secondary institutions and equipment manufacturers.

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