Frederick authorizes new tax incentives to attract business -- Gazette.Net







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As part of its ongoing efforts to attract business, Frederick will roll out three new or reauthorized tax incentive programs aimed at several different areas of the city.

The five-member Frederick Board of Aldermen Thursday night unanimously approved three programs that consolidate all of the city’s tax incentives within the municipal code in one section, instead of being part of the city charter or scattered throughout the code.

In addition to reauthorizing an incentive program for the economically troubled “Golden Mile” stretch of Md. Route 40, two new programs were added, including the New Jobs and Enhanced New Jobs Property Tax Credit and the Historic Preservation Property Rehabilitation Tax Credit Program.

The new jobs credit has two tiers: a property tax credit for businesses expanding by 5,000 square feet and adding 25 jobs over two years, and one for large employers that occupy 250,000 square feet of newly-constructed space and employ more than 2,500 workers.

The preservation credit covers 10 percent of the documented expenses for exterior renovations of historic properties.

Griffin said most of the incentives last for seven years, but that the city continues to see tax revenue in each year, with the amount of credit decreasing each year. He said the city would not lose tax revenue under the incentives, which are only for significant upgrades that would add property value, such as rewiring a building or an addition.

The three levels of projects eligible for the programs are those costing less than $1 million, between $1 million and $4 million, and more than $4 million.

“This is an encouragement to invest, on a project hanging on a cliff to see if it will more forward or not, this could be the impetus. It comes at no expense of existing tax revenue to the city,” Griffin said at the meeting.