Metal Machining & Fabrication

Key industry advantages

  • Dubuque is a transportation hub. Our central location provides companies with low-cost trucking options, a large network of four-lane highways and close proximity to Interstate 80 & 35 providing coast-to-coast access.
  • There are many steel suppliers stationed in Dubuque including Kloeckner Metals and Steel Mart.
  • Local businesses are accustomed to working closely with large manufacturers’ supply chain management teams.
  • Our area offers a variety of large shovel-ready industrial sites.


  • Our regional laborshed includes an estimated 120,983 people in manufacturing fields. To learn more about the region’s workforce, please view our laborshed information.
  • The Greater Dubuque region offers a unique and proven employee recruitment tool for the tri-state market called
  • Businesses can take advantage of our innovative workforce solutions including Opportunity Dubuque. This program trains individuals in Computer Numerical Control (CNC), welding, and advanced manufacturing—free of charge to participants.
  • The State of Iowa New Jobs Training Program, administered by Northeast Iowa Community College, provides funding for various costs associated with new worker training and education, as well as incumbent worker training and skills upgrades.

State Business Advantages

  • Iowa is a right-to-work state.
  • Businesses receive a 50 percent deduction of federal corporate income tax from the state income tax.
  • Iowa is one of only a few states in the nation to consistently offer a refundable research and development activities tax credit.
  • Iowa’s workers’ compensation costs are among the nation’s lowest. The average cost of workers’ compensation insurance for manufacturers in Iowa is 16 percent lower than the national average. Iowa law provides for employers choice of doctor.
  • In the State of Iowa, there is:
    • No corporate income tax on profits from sales made outside of Iowa. (Manufacturers selling all products outside of Iowa pay no Iowa corporate income tax.)
    • No sales or use tax on purchases of machinery, equipment, or computers used for manufacturing.
    • No sales tax on the purchases of electricity or natural gas used directly in the manufacturing process.
    • No sales tax on materials used in the manufacturing process.
    • No personal property tax for corporate inventories of goods-in-process, raw material, or salable goods.