Enterprise zones are designed to encourage business investment through property tax exemption in designated areas of Clackamas County. Locating or expanding into an enterprise zone provides eligible businesses property tax exemption on new construction and equipment for a period of three to five years.
Eligible business includes manufacturers, processors, shippers and a variety of operations that serve other organizations, as well as call centers and headquarter-type facilities. Hotel/resort businesses are also eligible in the Sandy Enterprise Zone. Retail, construction, financial and certain other defined activities are ineligible.
Criteria for Qualifying Projects
The 3-Year Tax Abatement Program
A company will not pay taxes on its new investment if it can:
- Increase full time, permanent employment by 10% and maintain it for 3 years;
- Pay the new employees at least 150% of the state minimum wage or $13.20 per hour for 2012 (benefits can be used to reach this pay level);
- Enter into a First Source Hiring Agreement with local job training providers; and
- Pay an application fee of 0.1% of the proposed total investment.
The 5-Year Tax Abatement Program
A company must meet all of the requirements of the 3-year program as well as the following to receive 2 additional years of tax abatement.
- Compensation of new workers must be at or above 150% of the County average wage for 2012 of $30.40 per hour/$63,230 annual (benefits can be used to reach this pay level);
- The increased employment level and higher wages must be maintained for 5 years;
- There must be local approval by written agreement with the local zone sponsor;
- The company must meet any additional requirements that the local zone sponsor may reasonably request.
Clackamas County Strategic Investment Zone
The Clackamas County Urban and Rural Strategic Investment Zone provides a compelling business recruitment tool designed to attract large capital intensive traded sector businesses. The program provides consistent criteria and a streamlined approval process.
- 15 year property tax abatements on facilities and equipment to any "traded-sector" business. Examples include production, manufacturing, high tech, among others.
- Applies to large capital investments—$25 million minimum in the rural zone and $100 million in the urban zone.
- Requires the company to pay a community service fee equal to 25% of the tax savings per year to local public service providers to offset community impacts. The community service fee is capped at an annual maximum of $2 million in urban areas or $500,000 in rural areas.
The Clackamas County Urban Zone: unincorporated urban Clackamas County and the cities of Lake Oswego and portions of Happy Valley.
The Clackamas County Rural Zone: unincorporated rural Clackamas County portions of Happy Valley and the cities of Sandy, Molalla, Estacada and Canby.
Clackamas County Rural Revolving Loan Program
Businesses located outside the Portland Metro urban growth boundary are eligible for loans up to $150,000. This money can be used on land, building acquisition, new construction, machinery and equipment. The requirements are one job for each $25,000.
Mt. Hood Economic Alliance Grants & Revolving Loan Fund
Regional and Rural Investment Funds (grants & loans) focusing on economic development. Priority will be given to projects that create or retain jobs, leverage outside capital investment for business development, demonstrate ongoing sustainability, support minority and women owned companies, and projects that achieve an average wage level at or above the county minimum average wage.
Rural Community Loan Program
The Mid-Willamette Valley Council of Governments provides assistance to area small businesses with all of the commonly used government finance programs. These federal, state and local resources are designed to be used in partnership with private lenders such as banks to provide the financing needed by companies to expand or start new venture and create more jobs for the area.
Please contact the Business & Economic Development office at 503-742-4BIZ (4249) for more information.
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