Business Development


The Mid-Iowa region provides low cost of of doing business, abundant workforce and transportation advantages and  diverse and competitive state incentives perfect for expansion and/or relocation. Learn why more than 200 businesses located or expanded in our region in 2018.


Major Employers

Labor Force 

  Hamilton County Hardin County Humboldt County Kossuth County Palo Alto County Pocahontas County Webster County Wright County
Labor Force 7,172 8,621 5,437 8,909 5,007 4,384 20,675 6,745
Labor Force Growth (2010-2016) -4.00% -4.10% 5.20% 6.60% 4.90% 7.40% 4.60% -0.60%


Educational Attainment

  Hamilton County Hardin County Humboldt County Kossuth County Palo Alto County Pocahontas County Webster County Wright County
High School Diploma or More – % of Adults 25+ 92.6% 91.8% 91.8% 94.9% 94.4% 92.1% 91.4% 90.5%
Educational Attainment: HS 30.7% 33.4% 37.2% 37.9% 29.0% 39.5% 33.2% 35.2%
Post HS –    2-Year 15.6% 14.4% 14.0% 13.8% 16.4% 15.0% 14.4% 11.9%
Post HS –    4-Year 16.8% 14.7% 15.4% 16.0% 19.6% 13.0% 14.6% 13.2%
Post HS – Grad School 6.7% 6.0% 4.7% 3.8% 5.9% 2.7% 5.8% 4.3%



The Mid-Iowa region is easily accessible by roadways, railways and by air which makes it conveniently located for businesses and their employees. The MIGP region is just 75 miles north of the Interstate 80/35 intersection, is served by two major rail carries and is served by numerous county airports as well as the Des Moines International Airport located 90 miles to the south. 

  • Highway: Interstate 35 and U.S. Highway 20, which intersect in north-central Iowa, are located in the Mid-Iowa region. Mid-Iowa Growth Partnership’s region is just 75 miles north of the Interstate 80/35 intersection, known as the “Midwest Connectors.”
  • Rail: Iowa’s 130,000-mile freight transportation system includes an extensive railroad network. The Mid-Iowa region is main line served by two major rail carriers, Union Pacific and Canadian National. 
  • Air: Mid-Iowa is home to numerous municipal airports, which are hard surface and Jet A-1 fuel authorized facilities. The Des Moines International Airport is located 90 minutes to the south, with non-stop and daily routes throughout the U.S. and abroad. The Fort Dodge Regional Airport is a connector to all major International destinations through connectors from Minneapolis-St.Paul.



In today’s world, being in a position to take advantage of opportunities gives you leverage. The Mid-Iowa region provides an economic and business climate that is proactive in the development, expansion and retention of business & industry.

Commercial & Industrial Tax Abatement: Iowa law allows cities and counties to abate local property taxes for value added to industrial real estate.

High Quality Jobs: The High Quality Jobs program provides qualifying businesses tax credits and direct financial assistance to offset some of the costs incurred to locate, expand or modernize an Iowa facility. To qualify for this very flexible assistance package that includes loans, forgivable loans, tax credits, exemptions and/or refunds, eligible businesses must meet certain wage threshold requirements. Visit wage requirements to view the requirements for wage thresholds. 

Tax Incentives:

The State’s refundable research activities credit may be increased while the business is participating in the program. 

A local property tax exemption of up to 100 percent of the value added to the property to a period not to exceed 20 years may be available. 

An investment tax credit equal to a percentage of the qualifying investment, amortized over five years. This tax credit is earned when the corresponding asset is placed in service and can be carried forward for up to seven additional years or until depleted, whichever occurs first.

A refund of state sales, service or use taxes paid to contractors or subcontractors during construction.

For distribution center projects, a refund of sales and use taxes paid on racks, shelving and conveyor equipment.

To assure your addition/expansion can benefit from this program, businesses must apply prior to the beginning of the project. 

Tax Increment Financing:

City councils or county boards of supervisors may use the property taxes resulting from the increase in taxable valuation caused by the construction of new industrial or commercial facilities to provide economic development incentives to a business or industry. Tax Increment Financing may be used to offset the cost of public improvements and utilities that will serve the new private development, to finance direct grants or loans to a company, or to provide the local match for federal or state economic development assistance programs. 


State Tax Incentives

Iowa Corporate Income Tax: A number of features of Iowa’s corporate income tax offer significant advantages when compared to other state’s corporate taxes. 

  • Fifty percent deductibility of federal taxes from Iowa corporate income tax.
  • Single-factor, non-unitary tax.
  • Iowa’s tax is based only on the percentage of total sales income within the state.
  • Iowa corporate income tax may be reduced or eliminated by the New Jobs Tax Credit & Enterprise Zone Tax Credit. 

No Sales or Use Tax on Manufacturing Machinery and Equipment Purchases

No Property Tax on New Industrial Machinery and Equipment

No Personal Property (Inventory) Tax

No Sales & Use Tax

Pollution Control or Recycling Property Tax Exemption: Pollution control and recycling equipment may be eligible for a property tax exemption. Improvements to real property that are primarily used to control pollution of air or water, or primarily used for recycling, may qualify. An application must be filed for exemption.

Unemployment Insurance: Iowa has the lowest new employer unemployment insurance rate in the nation. The rate for all non-construction business is 1 percent for a three-year period until an experience rating is established. Iowa offers a zero rate for good experience; approximately 45 percent of Iowa employers are at a zero rate. 

New Jobs Tax Credit: A business entering into an agreement under the state’s training program and increasing its workforce by at least 10 percent – may qualify for this Iowa corporate income tax credit. This credit is equal to 6 percent of the state unemployment insurance taxable wage base. The credit for 2005 is up to $1,204 per new employee and can be carried forward up to 10 years.

Research & Development Tax Credit: A credit for increasing research activities is 6.5 percent of the company’s allotted share of qualifying research expenditures in Iowa. A company must meet the qualifications of the federal research activities credit in order to be eligible for the credit on the Iowa return.

Assistive Device Tax Credit: Iowa small businesses can reduce their taxes by buying or renting products or equipment, or by making physical changes to the workplace to help employees with disabilities get or keep a job. 

New Market Tax Credit: Areas located in a Distressed Tract or an Out Migration Tract may be eligible for other financial incentives. 

The Mid Iowa Growth Partnership works closely with city, county, regional and state groups to offer a comprehensive business growth system. our region has a proven track record of pro-business community assistance initiatives and economic development assistance programs targeted specifically to the needs of existing and prospective businesses in multiple business sectors, such as: Renewable Energy/Biotech (ethanol, biodiesel, bioprocessing, etc.), Advanced Manufacturing (fabrication, plastics, electronics, etc.), Information Solutions (communications, educational service, etc.) and Warehousing & Distribution. 

Choosing the Mid-Iowa Region for Your Business.

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