I grew up in Iowa, and I was a big Evangelist in Iowa as far as helping to bring small businesses to Iowa. Mike sent me an email, asking what I thought about Iowa enticing Microsoft into building a DataCenter in DesMoines … especially in light of the recent Class Action Lawsuit against Microsoft.
I think it’s a great idea for any business to go into a location that is stateside which doesn’t necessarily have… well. Maybe DesMoines isn’t as “sexy” as San Fransisco, LA or Chicago. However, that weakness is also the strength. The costs are much lower for nearly everything. The people are more down-to-earth in general. This makes it easier to attract and keep good employees for the long-term.
Microsoft has said it must have a good supply of energy, water, workers and certain fiber optics. So the location would have to be near a power plant, have an available network of “dark fiber,” have a substantial water supply, and be along an interstate. Iowa lawmakers are trying to fast-track a set of tax breaks for Microsoft through the Iowa House this week. The legislation would offer a state sales and use tax exemptions on purchases of computers, equipment and electricity necessary for use in a Web portal business with an investment of at least $200 million in Iowa. And the technology equipment inside the building would be exempt from property taxes. The tax breaks are the same as the ones lawmakers passed last year to lure high-tech giant Google.
Overall, I think ANY big business would benefit greatly by opening up off-shoots in smaller communities.
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