WEST DES MOINES, Iowa --- Iowa is no longer life changing.
The newly revamped Iowa Economic Development Authority has scrapped the "Iowa life changing" theme of the old department in favor of a new brand and a new website URL that also drops mention of the life changing wording.
It is the first changing in the state's marketing logo since former Gov. Tom Vilsack's administration formulated a marketing campaign built around the Grow Iowa Values Fund program approved in 2003, said IEDA spokeswoman Tina Hoffman.
"That's all gone," IEDA Director Debi Durham said of the life changing motto. "I don't know what that means. Nobody knows what it means. It's all gone. It's just simply the brand is Iowa. I think it's very now."
Hoffman said the rebranding and the authority's web site "face lift" were undertaken as part of a fresh start that came with the end of the state Department of Economic Development and the creation of the new public-private partnership that Gov. Terry Branstad proposed and got approved by the split-control Legislature last session.
The authority is changing its stationary and all its marketing materials to reflect the new approach.
The new brand features the state's name with the "O" in Iowa a colored pair of parenthesis, with the materials playing off that image to highlight or showcase various messages, Hoffman said.
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Durham told attendees at the Iowa Association of Electric Cooperatives' annual meeting that the new brand was created internally by EDA staff and went through a focus-group testing process where it was viewed as "modern, fresh and attention-getting."
She said the authority didn't make a big deal about the logo change because "we're just about doing business" given the governor's directive to create 200,000 new private-sector jobs and raise personal income for Iowans by 25 percent in five years.
To that end, Durham said her agency will request $25 million for state business incentives during the 2012 session to carry on efforts to attract and retain jobs once the Values Fund money runs out on June 30, 2012.
The agency's legislative package also will seek to preserve research and development tax credits but to end the ill-fated film tax credit program that has been suspended through fiscal 2013 after significant problems were uncovered that have led to several criminal prosecutions of filmmaker participants.
Durham said she has seen estimates that for every dollar invested in film tax credits, the state recouped about 60 cents that was spent by film projects shot in Iowa.
"That is not a good return. I think most people can agree with that," she said. "We should get rid of the film tax credit."