PDI Blog

PDI's Blog will include legislative news, economic development news headlines, messages from our PDI President and other topics contributed by our membership. Choose from the list of contributors and categories, listed to the right,  to find the type of articles you are interested in.

Convergent Growth Continues with ByrneAllen Merger

Convergent Nonprofit Solutions announced on January 22, 2013 it is merging with ByrneAllen Corporation. Established in 1995, ByrneAllen specializes in managing fundraising capital campaigns for chambers of commerce, economic development organizations, and Habitat for Humanity affiliates. 

Read more in the press release.


Written by PDI
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Presidential Post - January 15, 2012

Welcome to PDI’s New Website!

PDIowa.com is one of PDI's most important communication and member service tools, and over the past year, the association has invested significant financial and volunteer resources to fully overhaul and improve the site and its features. We've freshened the site's look, assimilated PDI social media resources into the experience, added important search functions and much more. Too, we've fully integrated PDI's member database into the site, meaning registration for events, contact information changes, receipt requests and more can be done in user-directed real time. As you review the site, we hope you'll notice more timely topical information delivery, better design and more efficient functionality. All this is not to suggest we don't have a bug or two to work out- we continue testing and appreciate any feedback you may have about the new site. And by 'we' I naturally mean 'Executive Director Lynn Harkin'.

Your login has been set up as your email address and your password is 1234567. Once you've logged into the site, you can click on 'My ACCT' and look for 'Login Credentials' in order to change your login/password.

I want to particularly thank Bruce Nuzum, Rob Williams, Shelly Turner, Darcy Watson and Lynn Harkin, who have managed this process from start to finish. This team has delivered to your association a fine product and contributed countless hours to see it through. Each of them deserves our gratitude.


Brent Willett
President, Professional Developers of Iowa

Written by Brent Willett
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The Presidential Post - January 13, 2013

PDIowa.com is one of PDI's most important communication and member service tools, and over the past year, the association has invested significant financial and volunteer resources to fully overhaul and improve the site and its features. ...

Read more of this post & comment.

Written by Brent Willett
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The Cedar Vally to seek Skilled Iowa Community Distinction

The Cedar Valley recently pledged its commitment to becoming a Skilled Iowa Community, the first Iowa community to seek this distinction.

This move signals that the Cedar Valley, which includes the Waterloo-Cedar Falls metro area, is dedicated to growing a skilled workforce.

The Skilled Iowa Community initiative encourages local workers to earn a National Career Readiness Certificate, or NCRC.  This certificate highlights a worker’s skills and abilities to hiring businesses, helping them hire the right workers with the right skill sets. 

The Skilled Iowa Initiative also includes local high schools and community colleges in the effort to grow a labor pool that is ready to fill current and future positions.  By partnering with these outlets, individuals have the opportunity to gain the skills that will be required in their upcoming careers. 

But it’s not just younger workers who benefit from the program. Workers of all skill levels are necessary for the success of a dynamic workforce in any community, and Skilled Iowa intends to support and develop the skills of these workers to better serve the local economy.

The initiative aims to have 10 percent of businesses in a Skilled Iowa Community endorse the program by promoting the National Career Readiness Certificate and hiring certified workers. Another goal for a Skilled Iowa Community is having 5 percent of the current labor force earning an NCRC, making it a desirable place for businesses to locate or expand.

Skilled Iowa urges all communities in the state to take part in this program by encouraging the use of the NCRC by both workers and employers. Visit www.skillediowa.org to learn more about becoming a Skilled Iowa Community.

Follow Skilled Iowa on Facebook at http://www.facebook.com/SkilledIowa for the latest updates.

Written by PDI
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Benefits Change to High Quality Jobs and Enterprise Zones Programs

The Iowa Economic Development Authority (IEDA) Board has recently acted to change the benefit requirements for businesses to be eligible for direct financial assistance and tax benefits through the High Quality Jobs and Enterprise Zones Programs. The proposed requirements have been modified to more accurately reflect current market conditions.

Benefits specialist firm, David Lind and Associates, conducted the Iowa Employer Benefits Study. The study is a compilation of benefit plans offered by over 950 Iowa employers and provides a comprehensive marketplace analysis of benefits. The results of this study were utilized to help develop and enact the new policy that reflects “best practices” and the changes we’ve seen in the benefit trends.

The following is a brief overview of the changes that have taken effect January 1, 2013:

  • Requires only medical coverage. The requirement for dental coverage has been eliminated.
  • Three deductible levels have been established, each based on the total number of Iowa employees at time of application:

A 250+ Iowa employees

B 50-249 Iowa employees

C 2-49 Iowa employees

To be eligible to receive state financial assistance or tax credit benefits, applicants must offer sufficient benefits to each FTE permanent position. “Sufficient benefits” and “sufficient benefits credit” are defined in rule 261—173.2(15,15G,83GA,SF344). An employer may select one of the following options to meet the sufficient benefits requirement:

Option 1

80% Single Coverage

Option 2

50% Family Coverage

Option 3 

 Monetary Equivalent

Pay 80% of premium costs for a standard medical plan, single coverage.

A - $750 maximum deductible (250+)

B - $1,250 maximum deductible (50-249)

C - $1,750 maximum deductible (2-49)


Pay 50% of premium costs for a standard medical and dental plan, family coverage.

A - $1,500 maximum deductible

B - $2,500 maximum deductible (50-249)

C - $3,500 Maximum deductible (2-49)

Provide medical and pay the  monetary equivalent of Option 1 or Option 2 in supplemental employee benefits.


Benefits Counted Toward Monetary Equivalent

  • Medicl coverage
  • Dental coverage
  • Vision insurance
  • Life insurance
  • Pension
  • 401(k) (company's average contribution)
  • Short-/long-term disability insurance
  • Child care services
  • Other nonwage compensation


Written by PDI
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