1. A business which is not located in an enterprise zone is eligible to receive incentives and assistance under section 15E.196 if the business has not closed or reduced its operation in one area of the state and relocated substantially the same operation in a location which qualifies the business under this section and if the business meets all of the following criteria:
a. Satisfies the requirements in section 15E.193, subsection 1, paragraphs "a", "b", "d", and "e".
b. Is or will be located in a city with a population between eight thousand and twenty-four thousand as determined by population estimates by the United States bureau of the census for the year of 1995.
c. Is or will be located in a city which is not more than thirty-five miles from an existing enterprise zone in this state or an equivalent zone in an adjacent state.
d. Satisfies the requirement in section 15.329, subsection 1, paragraph "d".
e. Is or will be located in an area which meets two of the criteria listed in section 15E.194, subsection 2.
f. Receives approval by ordinance or resolution from the city in which the project is located.
2. After approval of a project by ordinance or resolution, the city shall submit an application for incentives and assistance to the department of economic development. As part of the application, the city shall submit information relating the requirements listed in subsection 1 and in section 15E.193, subsection 2. The department may approve, defer, or deny the application.
3. If a business has received incentives or assistance under section 15E.196 and fails to maintain the requirements of subsection 1 to be an eligible business, the business is subject to repayment of all or a portion of the incentives and assistance that it has received. The city shall have the authority to take action to recover the value of taxes not collected as a result of an exemption provided by the community to the business. The department of revenue and finance shall have the authority to recover the value of state taxes or incentives provided under section 15E.196. The value of state incentives provided under section 15E.196 includes applicable interest and penalties. The department of economic development and the city shall enter into agreements with the business specifying the method for determining the amount of incentives or assistance paid which will be repaid in the event of failure to maintain the requirements of subsection 1. In addition, a business that fails to maintain the requirements of subsection 1 shall not receive incentives or assistance for each year during which the business is not in compliance.
4. In making its decision regarding an application, the department of economic development shall consider the impact of the eligible business on other businesses in competition with it and compare the compensation package of businesses in competition with the business being considered for incentives or assistance. The department shall make a good faith effort to identify existing Iowa businesses within an industry in competition with the business being considered for incentives or assistance. The department shall also make a good faith effort to determine the probability that the proposed incentives or assistance will displace employees of existing businesses. In determining the impact on businesses in competition with the business seeking incentives or assistance, jobs created as a result of other jobs being displaced elsewhere in the state shall not be considered direct jobs created.
However, if the department finds that an eligible business has a record of violations of the law, including but not limited to environmental and worker safety statutes, rules, and regulations, over a period of time that tends to show a consistent pattern, the eligible business shall not qualify for incentives or assistance under section 15E.196, unless the department finds that the violations did not seriously affect public health or safety or the environment, or if it did that there were mitigating circumstances. In making the findings and determinations regarding violations, mitigating circumstances, and whether an eligible business is eligible for incentives or assistance under section 15E.196, the department is exempt from chapter 17A. If requested by the department, the business shall provide copies of materials documenting the type of violation, any fees or penalties assessed, court filings, final disposition of any findings, and any other information which would assist the department in assessing the nature of any violation.
5. A business that is approved to receive incentives or assistance shall, for the length of its designation as an enterprise zone business, certify annually to the department of economic development its compliance with the requirements of this section.
98 Acts, ch 1175, §10
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