Heartland spokesman questions Mid-Iowa tax breaks

Terry Frahm from Heartland Cooperative questioned the incentives that Mid-Iowa would receive for its expansion project (pictured above) north of Grundy Center at Monday morning's board of supervisors meeting. The companies are direct competitors with each other. 

Heartland Cooperative Vice President of Administration Terry Frahm inquired about what incentives Mid Iowa Co-Op would receive on its expansion project north of Grundy Center and bemoaned what he considered a potential unfair advantage for his competitors during Monday morning’s Grundy County Board of Supervisors meeting.

           

“It’s not about competing with Mid-Iowa… if they’re offered a (Tax Increment Financing) out there, it creates an unlevel (sic) playing field for us and other grain elevators in Grundy County,” Frahm said. “I always have problems with government bodies picking winners and losers, and it seems like we have more of that all the time.”

           

Frahm freely admitted that Heartland, which operates locations in Grundy Center, Holland and Reinbeck locally, has benefited from TIF, a system that abates a percentage of taxes on new developments for a set number of years, on several of its own projects but claimed that the communities had also reaped the rewards of the company’s presence. He later referenced the deal that provided a total of $213 million in incentives to Apple for a data center in Waukee as a prime example of governments going overboard in pursuit of economic development.

           

“I think Iowa is a great place, but I think we as taxpayers give way too much money away to corporations to bring them to Iowa,” Frahm said. “How much do we really need to incentivize a company to build in the middle of a cornfield when what they do is take grain?”

 

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