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165 jobs, $110 million in aid

The Des Moines Register
9/4/12

Iowa economic development leaders today will consider boosting tax credits for a proposed fertilizer plant to $100 million over four years to attract the $1.3 billion project to southeast Iowa, said Debi Durham, the state’s economic development director.

Durham said the added tax credits are needed to keep the project from being lured to Illinois, which has aggressively recruited Egypt-based Orascom Construction Industries to locate the project there….

The cost per job would be about $600,000.

“That’s a huge investment for a small number of jobs in one place. It’s several times even the most generous packages,” said Peter Fisher, research director of Iowa Policy Project, a nonprofit research group in Iowa City. “At some point, we have to ask, ‘What is the limit? Is there a limit on what we will pay for a good job?’ ”