Iowa Senate candidate Petersen releases plan to revitalize rural Iowa
C.J. Petersen, the lone Democrat running in Iowa Senate District 6, discussed his motivation for seeking office and the COVID-19 pandemic in a Facebook Live broadcast Friday.
TEMPLETON: C.J. Petersen, Democratic nominee for Iowa Senate District 6, has released his Homecomers Initiative, a plan that builds upon a range of bipartisan ideas to help strengthen existing businesses and spark new entrepreneurship throughout rural Iowa.
“In small towns across Iowa, too many storefronts are closing forever. When they do, it’s not just the owners that hurt, it’s all of us,” Petersen said. “As a kid, I saw my family’s own business in Atlantic close when my grandparents reached retirement age. That storefront still stands empty.”
Senate District 6, which includes Audubon, Buena Vista, Carroll, eastern Crawford and Sac Counties, has plenty of closed storefronts and young people fleeing the region in search of higher-paying jobs and healthcare benefits. Petersen dismisses the wisdom of current political leaders who say that reality can’t be changed.
“Like a lot of states, Iowa spends a lot of money trying to attract big, out-of-state entrepreneurs,” Petersen said. “The Homecomers Initiative is different. I’m proposing reallocating just a small percent of the funds we typically spend on corporate incentives and reinvesting that money into home-grown talent.”
Petersen’s comprehensive plan addresses the technological, social and economic challenges that entrepreneurs face when trying to start a new business or improve their existing main street or farm operation. He borrows from best practices other states and integrates elements of Gov. Kim Reynolds’ existing strategy as well.