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      Branstad, Reynolds stop in Bloomfield on tour of Iowa manufacturers

      Governor Terry Branstad and Lieutenant Governor Kim Reynolds stopped in Bloomfield Thursday morning to tour Davencorp Welding and Fabrication Inc.

      The morning's stop was just one on a tour around the state visiting local businesses. Branstad and Reynolds said they're trying to get a better grasp on the challenges facing engineering and manufacturing workers, then trying to see how the state can help.

      One common theme across Iowa is finding and maintaining a solid workforce. Reynolds said legislation passed in Des Moines is trying to help with that.

      "With workforce, we're working on that right now with the Skilled Iowa Initiative, the Governor's STEM -- science, technology, engineering and math -- Initiative, as well as the Home Base Iowa, where we're encouraging, as we draw down the military, veterans, not only existing Iowa veterans, but other veterans to come to Iowa and match them up with existing jobs," Lt. Governor Reynolds said.

      Davencorp employees also talked to Reynolds and Branstad about the local impact of raising the gas tax and how it reflects on their paychecks.

      They also asked for state assistance and consideration for improving roads and infrastructure, including make the expansion of Highway 63 from Ottumwa to Bloomfield a priority.