Ohio Enterprise Zone Program
The Enterprise Zone (EZ) program allows companies to locate a facility in certain municipalities or townships and receive a partial property tax exemption on new investments in new or significantly improved buildings. Most of Muskingum County is designated as an EZ. The term and percent of exemption are negotiated. The term and percent cannot exceed 75% for 10 years in municipalities or 60% for 10 years in townships without school board approval. Historically, Muskingum County has offered higher exemption percentages in exchange for payments in lieu of taxes directly to school districts. The EZ program requires completion of an application, which must be approved by local officials prior to beginning construction. Over the last 10 years, Muskingum County has provided exemptions for 30 projects that resulted in an investment of over $343 million, the creation of over 1,300 jobs and the retention of over 1,000 jobs.
Community Reinvestment Area
In portions of the City of Zanesville, the Community Reinvestment Area (CRA) program can provide up to 100% real property tax exemptions on new industrial or commercial properties or the increased value of building improvements. The CRA Program is a direct incentive tax exemption program benefiting property owners who renovate existing or construct new buildings. This program permits municipalities or counties to designate areas where investment has been discouraged as a CRA to encourage revitalization of the existing housing stock and the development of new structures.
Job Creation Tax Credit
The Job Creation Tax Credit is a refundable tax credit to companies generally 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 withholding’s for all new employees hired under the program, and is applied toward the company’s commercial activity tax liability. Should the amount of the credit exceed the company’s commercial activity tax 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.
Research and Development Investment Tax Credit
The Research and Development Investment Tax Credit is a non-refundable Ohio commercial activity tax credit for all investment in qualified research expenses incurred in Ohio. Qualified research expenses are based on Section 41 definitions in the United States Internal Revenue Code and include expenses for both in-house and contract research expenses. The amount of the credit is based on 7 percent of the amount of all qualified investment in a specific year. The credit can be carried forward for up to seven years.