Government Affairs

The Mount Pleasant Area Chamber Alliance engages with local, state and federal officials to create public policy that generates economic growth, business prosperity and talent development in Mount Pleasant/Henry County. We provide opportunities for our members to connect, build relationships and continue dialogue with their elected officials.

At the start of each state legislative session, the Chamber hosts a Legislative Kick-Off to unveil our annual state agenda. In addition, we host a series of breakfast during the legislative session which is open to the public allowing time to communicate with our elected officials. At the end of the session, we invite our elected officials to give us a brief wrap up at a lunch held in appreciation for their efforts.

We have two important lobbying trips for our members. We are a proud participant in Southeast Iowa Days at the State Capitol in Des Moines and the annual Washington DC Fly In to our nation’s capitol. Both are cooperative events with our Southeast Iowa neighbors in Des Moines, Lee and Louisa counties.

Government Affairs Committee

The Mount Pleasant Area Chamber of Commerce Government Affairs Committee meets regularly with the objective to stimulate community engagement in legislative policy and to help develop legislative position statements on behalf of Mount Pleasant, Henry County, and the Southeast Iowa region. This committee establishes the Guiding Principles and the State Legislative Agenda with input from our members.

GOVERNING PRINCIPLES AND LEGISLATIVE PRIORITIES

  • Economic Development

    The Mount Pleasant Area Chamber Alliance recognizes local economic development tools as invaluable and integral pieces of Iowa’s economic development efforts. A well-executed economic development program promotes job creation, enhances the tax base over the duration of the program, and allows local governments to incur debt in a sustainable manner.

    Legislative Priorities

    • New initiatives that center on rural and small community economic development and housing incentives.
    • Economic development programs that attract quality jobs, foster innovation and entrepreneurship, and helping those already here expand their operations.
    • Local control over TIF districts for continued utilization of dollars for both horizontal and vertical infrastructure development and its use as an incentive tool for job creation.
  • Workforce and Housing

    Despite relatively low unemployment in the State, workforce issues remain a top priority for Iowa. Iowa’s businesses are finding it difficult to find qualified candidates with the appropriate skills who are ready to work. It is imperative for Iowa to prioritize workforce training and we applaud Governor Kim Reynolds for her dedication to the Future Ready Iowa Initiative.

    Legislative Priorities

    • Strategies that leverage a variety of state and local resources to increase the number and variety of homes available in the region.
    • Iowa Jobs Training Programs (260E and 260F) that are administered by one of Iowa’s 15 community colleges which expand Iowa’s workforce through new employee training, increasing the employees’ skill set and improving productivity of employers.
    • Collaborative efforts between the community colleges and Iowa Wesleyan University to enhance appropriate educational skills and abilities for preparation for both higher education and the workplace.
  • Education

    It is vital that Iowa has an educational system that prepares students to succeed in a very competitive economy. With the cost of education increasing and standards decreasing it is important that Iowa’s educational system have a strong core curriculum to make sure students are prepared for both higher education and/or the workplace.

    Legislative Priorities

    • Action on K-12 funding that allows schools to certify budgets on time, is equitable across the range of Iowa’s diverse school districts and is at a level that is both appropriate and sustainable.
    • Extend the Secure an Advanced Vision for Education (SAVE) sales tax to 2049.
    • Policies to aid rural areas that are faced with high transportation costs for busing children to and from school.
    • Continued emphasis on STEM fields and Career and Technical Education.
    • Funding for the Iowa Tuition Grant and PSEO.
    • Reinstate the mission of public higher education to avoid duplication of majors and to ensure the curriculum matches the skill sets needed in Iowa.
  • Healthcare

    The trends in healthcare are a growing concern at every level of government.  One reason for this concern is that healthcare is a growing sector with increased cost in all states, including Iowa.  We encourage the state to address the challenges facing the healthcare industry.

    Legislative Priorities

    • Programs and incentives to attract and retain medical staff in rural areas.
    • Non-partisan oversight of Iowa’s privatized Medicaid system with transparent reporting.
    • Competition in insurance availability and review of unnecessary regulations on healthcare providers.
    • Funding for preventative programs to address the growing problems such as alcohol, opioid, substance abuse and mental health.
  • Transportation and Infrastructure

    The Mount Pleasant Area Chamber Alliance understands the vital importance of an established transportation system that connects Southeast Iowa within the region and beyond. Addressing transportation and infrastructure concerns is necessary to continue everyday business and attract new developers to the area.

    Legislative Priorities

    • A concerted effort to attract public and private investment to rural areas to ensure broadband infrastructure for our economic future.
    • Funding at the Iowa Department of Transportation for rail service into industrial parks and sites appropriate for rail projects.
    • Address a long-term, equitable solution to Iowa’s water quality challenge.
  • Tax Policy

    The Chamber believes Iowa’s tax code should encourage business growth, limit the size and costs of government and reflect the principles of equity, neutrality, simplicity and predictability. Accordingly, we support continued exploration of income tax reform and opposes efforts that would increase the tax burden on Iowa employers.

    Legislative Priorities

    • Simplifying the overall tax code to make it more competitive and equitable.
    • Efforts to simplify and reduce corporate income taxes.
    • Allowing states to collect sales tax from out-of-state establishments on internet purchases.
    • Oversight of tax credits and programs that have a documented Return on Investment with clear objectives for growing the economy.
    • Fully funding existing budget obligations including tax credits and promised to backfill to local governments.
  • General Business

    To be positioned for growth, Iowa must maintain forward thinking business practices within state government.

Menu