Climate change and Iowa: Swenson

December 16, 2020

David SwensonDavid Swenson, research scientist, was quoted in the Dec. 14 Quad-City Times story, "Climate change is making Iowa and Illinois hotter, wetter and more humid. Do you know what that means for your business?"

"Over that period of time the benefits will erode as the heat gets higher and creates stress, and the weather becomes more dry, creating stress for both corn and soybeans and livestock," Swenson said. "By mid-century, it’s expected we’ll slowly transition to more dry — less moisture, more heat and more arid situation," with parts of Iowa conducive to farming drying out and becoming more prone to drought.

Research by Swenson and Liesl Eathington was quoted in a Dec. 16 Bellevue Herald Leader story, "Urge Bellevue City Council to vote no on Offshore TIF increase."

TIFs are proven not to work. David Swenson, an ISU economist has studied TIFs for over 25 years.  He stated in his TIF research*, “exisiting taxpayers, its householders, wage earners, and retirees are aggressively subsidizing business growth and population via this practice.”  He further states, “We found virtually no statistically meaningful economic, fiscal, and social correlates with this practice in our assessment [of TIF]; consequently, the evidence that we analyzed suggests that net positions are not being enhanced – that the overall expected benefits do not exceed the public’s costs.” 

*Swenson, David and Liesl Eathington, “Do Tax Increment Finance Districts in Iowa Spur Regional Economic and Demograhic Growth or Squander Public Resources.” Department of Economics, Iowa State University, April 2002.

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