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Public Policy Update: Regional Leaders Go to Washington, D.C.

June 24, 2024 | Public Policy

Regional leaders meet with Sen. Chuck Grassley on Capitol Hill

Last week, members of the Cedar Rapids Metro Economic Alliance and Greater Iowa City, Inc. traveled to Washington, D.C. to share regional priorities with our federal delegation. A coalition of 35 leaders from the region representing small businesses, large employers, higher education, non-profits, and our cities went to the Capitol to advocate for workforce solutions, infrastructure investment, and the future of our growing region.

The group had productive meetings with Senator Grassley, Representative Hinson, Representative Miller-Meeks, and staff from Senator Ernst’s personal and committee offices. While on the Hill, the group advocated for:

  • Increasing the number of visas for high-skilled workers and streamlining the process to help address gaps in the U.S. workforce where we are falling behind.
  • Increasing funding and expanding eligibility for the Pell Grant so more students can access post-secondary degrees and training in high-demand careers, including the trades.
  • Support for a Federal Aviation Administration workforce grant application from the Eastern Iowa Airport, Kirkwood Community College, and Coe College.
  • Additional funding for completing crucial infrastructure projects along I-380, including Tower Terrace Road and Forevergreen Road, and The Burlington Street Bridge project in Iowa City.
Reception on Capitol Hill for Iowa leaders, Congressional staff and professionals living in D.C. with a connection to Eastern Iowa

In addition to these meetings, the D.C. Fly-In provided an opportunity for local leaders – public and private, from throughout Linn and Johnson counties – to spend time together and learn from one another. The group attended the Congressional Baseball Game for Charity at Nationals Park and a reception for D.C. residents with an Iowa connection, including Iowa transplants, Coe College and University of Iowa alumni, and staff from the Iowa federal delegation. Thank you to the reception’s presenting sponsor, the Eastern Iowa Airport, and supporting sponsors, Collins Aerospace and Van Meter.

We are grateful for the spirit of collaboration here in Eastern Iowa, and it will continue to position us to achieve even more. Thanks to all who made the trip a success.

Group photo on the Capitol steps
Having a little fun at the Congressional Baseball Game for Charity