East Central Iowa News

East Central Iowa News

Tuesday, March 31, 2020

Program hopes to connect veterans and businesses in Hardin County

Business

By Tabitha Peterson | Feb 27, 2020

Vet
Wikimedia Commons

A program called Home Base Iowa works to connect local businesses with qualified veterans and their spouses to provide job opportunities to those who have served the country. 

Mark Buschkamp, executive director for the Iowa Falls Area Development Corporation, and Angela De La Riva, Hardin County Economic Development director, have been visiting city council members in Hardin County to discuss the program. 

The Home Base program has now connected with over 2,000 different businesses across the state and has helped 16,000 veterans and their families, according to timescitizen.com.

In 2013, former Iowa Gov. Terry Branstad and Maj. Gen. Tim Orr, the adjutant general of the Iowa National Guard, worked together to form the Home Base Iowa program. At that time, a website was designed to allow military families and veterans to upload their resumes in search of employment. Businesses can then scout the website for potential candidates. 

Buschkamp said he and De La Riva are working hard to try and get the surrounding counties and communities to join in and start a similar program. Buschkamp first learned of the program in Cherokee County, when he was working there a few years ago. At the time, Buschkamp said that a few city council members knew about the program and what it offers.

The unemployment rate in Iowa is at a great low of 2.6 percent, according to timescitizen.com. Even at such a low rate, businesses face challenges with trying to expand their own personal operations. 

Buschkamp said he wants to help businesses by finding quality workers. He said Hardin County runs closely with Iowas unemployment rate of 2.6 percent, as it came in at 3 percent in December. 

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