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Ohio Incentives and Workforce Development Guide

Visit Real Street's website to learn more about this event. The updated Ohio incentives guide is brought to you by Real Street Expo, a new event sponsored by Business Facilities and Today’s Facility Manager magazines.

For a list of Ohio economic development agencies that can help with the site selection process, visit our Online Site Seekers’ Guide.

Ohio’s competitive and profitable business environment makes it easier for companies to expand or relocate in the state with solid financial footing. Their strategic location and pro-business climate brings together a full range of benefits from low-cost access to customers, and a comprehensive supply chain to streamlined regulatory processes and assistance programs that align with a growing company’s financial needs.

Financing

JobsOhio Loan and Grant Programs:
JobsOhio focuses its efforts on nine industry sectors that drive Ohio’s economy. These include: Advanced Manufacturing, Aerospace and Aviation, Agribusiness and Food Processing, Automotive, Biohealth, Energy, Financial Services, Information Technology, Polymers and Chemicals and Business Functions. It is funded with the profits from the State’s wholesale liquor enterprise. This source provides dedicated, flexible and sustainable funding to support Ohio business growth and job creation. Program decisions are based on a number of project factors, including but not limited to job creation, additional payroll, fixed-asset investment commitment, project return on investment and project location.
  • JobsOhio Growth Fund Loan: Provides capital for expansion projects to companies that have limited access to funding from conventional, private sources of financing. JobsOhio will consider loans to companies that are in the growth, established or expansion stage, and that have generated revenues through a proven business plan.
  • JobsOhio Economic Development Grant: Created to promote economic development, business expansion and job creation by providing funding for eligible projects in the State of Ohio.
  • JobsOhio Workforce Grant: Created to promote economic development, business expansion and job creation by providing funding for the improvement of worker skills and abilities.

For additional information on JobsOhio programs please visit jobs-ohio.com.

Research and Development Investment Loan Fund:
Provides loan financing between $500,000 and $5 million for projects primarily engaging in research and development activity. Rates are fixed (at- or below-market rates) with other loan terms similar to those of commercial bank financing. Companies receive a dollar-for-dollar, non-refundable Ohio commercial activity tax credit for principal and interest payments made during the year up to $150,000 during the loan term.
Ohio Enterprise Bond Fund:
Provides revenue bond financing through an S&P rated fund, whereby proceeds from the sale of bonds are loaned to companies for fixed-rate, long-term capital asset financing. Rates are market-driven and fixed prior to funding. Loan terms range between seven to 10 years for equipment and 15 to 20 years for real estate. Up to $10 million in financing is available through the program for eligible projects.
166 Direct Loan:
Provides loans for land and building acquisition, construction, expansion or renovation, and equipment purchases for eligible businesses. The program provides low-interest loans up to 40% not to exceed $1.5 million.
Regional 166 Direct Loan:
Provides loans for land and building acquisition, construction, expansion or renovation, and equipment purchases for eligible businesses. Regional economic development agencies administer the program. It provides low-interest loans up to 75% collateral value, not to exceed $500,000.
Innovation Ohio Loan Fund:
Provides loans for acquisition, construction and related capital costs of technology, facilities and equipment purchases. The fund was created to assist existing Ohio companies in developing next-generation products and services within the state’s Industry Sectors up to 75% ranging from $500,000 to $1.5 million.
Roadwork Development (629):
Roadwork Development (629) funds are available for public roadway improvements, including engineering and design costs. Funds are available for projects primarily involving manufacturing, research and development, high technology, corporate headquarters and distribution activity. Projects must create or retain jobs. Grants are reimbursable and provided to a local jurisdiction and require local participation.

Tax Incentives

Job Creation Tax Credit:
A refundable tax credit to companies creating at least 10 new jobs (within three years) with a minimum annual payroll of $660,000 that pay at least 150% of the federal minimum wage. The tax credit is measured as a percentage of the state income tax withholdings for all new employees hired under the program, and is applied toward the company’s commercial activity tax liability (CAT). Should the amount of the credit exceed the company’s CAT liability for any given year, the difference is refunded. A business must apply for the credit before committing to the project. Applicants must be approved through the Ohio Tax Credit Authority before hiring begins.
Ohio Enterprise Zone Program:
Provides real property tax incentives for businesses that expand or relocate in Ohio. To establish an Enterprise Zone, a municipality or county must apply to the Director of Development for certification. To secure benefits, businesses must apply to the local community. Certain qualifying businesses may be eligible for additional benefits.
Community Reinvestment Areas:
The Community Reinvestment Areas provide companies locating in a designated Community Reinvestment Area an exemption of up to 100% of improvement value for up to 15 years on real property taxes. To be eligible, a company must make an agreement with the local community prior to going forward with the qualifying project.
Research and Development Investment Tax Credit:
Provides a non-refundable tax credit up to 7% for qualified research and development expenses. Qualifying expenses fit into two categories: in-house research expenses, and contracted research expenses. Any unused portion of a tax credit may be carried forward for up to seven years.
Volume Cap:
Provides a federal tax benefit by allowing eligible issuers to issue tax exempt Private Activity Bonds up to a state limit known as the “Volume Cap.” The State of Ohio’s allocation of Volume Cap is determined annually by the Internal Revenue Service on a per capita basis, and may be used for projects consisting of multi-family housing, single-family housing, exempt facilities, manufacturing and student loan bonds.

For additional information on state programs please reference the Ohio Development Services Agency at development.ohio.gov.

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About The Author

Schwartz joined Group C Media in April 1989 as managing editor of Today's Facility Manager. In September 2012, she transitioned to a new role dedicated to developing online content for Business Facilities and Today's Facility Manager. Schwartz can be reached at [email protected]

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