State Incentives

High Quality Jobs

The High Quality Jobs (HQJ) program provides qualifying businesses assistance to off-set some of the costs incurred to locate, expand or modernize an Iowa facility. This flexible program includes loans, forgivable loans, tax credits, exemptions and/or refunds. The Iowa Economic Development Authority (IEDA) offers this program to promote growth in businesses, which employ Iowans in jobs defined as high-quality by state statute.

  • Actual award amounts based on the level of need; quality of the jobs; percentage of created or retained jobs defined as high-quality; and the project’s economic impact.
  • Local property tax exemption of up to 100% of the value added to the property to a period not to exceed 20 years may be available.
  • Investment tax credit equal to a percentage of qualifying investment.
    • amortized over 5 years, which offsets Iowa income taxes owed.
    • tax credit earned when corresponding asset is placed in service.
    • credit can be carried forward for up to 7 additional years or until depleted, whichever occurs first.
  • Refund of state sales, service or use taxes paid to contractors or subcontractors during construction.
  • Refund of sales and use taxes paid on racks, shelving and conveyor equipment for distribution projects.
  • State's refundable research activities credit may be increased while participating in the program.


  • Must apply prior to the beginning of the project.
  • Priority to projects with significant local economic impact.
  • Must meet wage threshold requirements:
    • Created jobs must pay at least 100% of the qualifying wage threshold at the start and 120% of the qualifying wage threshold by project completion and through the maintenance period unless in a distressed area.
    • Retained jobs must pay at least 120% of the qualifying wage threshold by project completion and through the maintenance period.
  • Must provide a sufficient benefits package to all full-time employees, which includes at least one of the following:
    • Business pays 70% of medical premiums for single coverage plans with qualifying deductible, OR
    • Business pays 60% of medical premiums for family coverage plans with qualifying deductible, OR
    • Business pays for some level of medical and dental coverage and provides the monetary equivalent value through other employee benefits.

How to Apply

  • Complete the Iowa Project Questionnaire (IPQ) pre-application so IEDA staff are able to provide individual assistance and guidance to ensure access to programs that best fit your needs. Upon completion of the IPQ, applicants invited to apply for financial assistance may complete the Application for Financial Assistance.
  • Visit wage requirements to view the requirements for wage thresholds.


Alaina Santizo

Iowa Economic Development

Phone: 515.348.6162

Iowa Economic Development High Quality Jobs program


Maicie Pohlman

Iowa Economic Development

Phone: 515.348.6161

Iowa Economic Development High Quality Jobs program

Category: State Incentives

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