DuPont-Pioneer Applying for State Funding Assistance Program

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JOHNSTON, Iowa --The Dow-DuPont merger created the world’s largest chemical company but many feared it could also cost Iowans their jobs

Two special meetings Friday could help clear that fear.

The Iowa Economic Development Authority board holds a meeting Friday morning, where they will discuss financial assistance awards for half a dozen Iowa companies including DuPont-Pioneer in Johnston. Both will discuss a tax incentive program that could keep and even grow jobs in Iowa.

Marketing and communications director Tina Hoffman confirmed they are applying for the High Quality Jobs Program.

The Johnston City Council has also planned a special session Friday afternoon where they will consider the approval for the application of that same program.

The High Quality Jobs Program is administered by the IEDA and provides forms of tax incentives to eligible businesses that meet job creation and capital investment requirements.

Many city and state leaders have been hoping that Dow-DuPont chooses to station their agriculture headquarters at the pioneer plant. When coupled with a possible program that requires the creation of jobs, it could point to Friday’s meetings as a positive sign for Johnston and its employees.

“We do appreciate the fact that Governor Branstad, Senator Grassley as well as Debbie Durham, with the Iowa Economic Development Authority, have taken this so seriously and have worked so hard with us in order to make the best pitch that we can to keep Pioneer as a very important and integral part in this new merged company,” said Johnston mayor Paula Dierenfeld.

Past companies that have been approved for the High Quality Jobs Program include Microsoft in 2008, John Deere and Company in 2010 and Hewlett Packard in 2011.

The IEDA board will discuss Pioneer’s financial assistance application at 8:30 a.m. Friday and the Johnston City Council will meet Friday at 1 p.m. to take action on IEDA’s potential approval.