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Economic Development Transition Policy Committee Report

Economic Development Transition Policy Committee Report

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Published by Timothy Gibbons

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Published by: Timothy Gibbons on Aug 08, 2011
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08/08/2011

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 MAYOR-ELECT BROWN– RECOMMENDATION FORM1.
 
Committee:
Economic Development
 2. Presented to Mayor Brown on August 8, 2011
 
2.
 
Recommendation(s):
 
Improve the current incentives and create new incentives to make Jacksonville morecompetitive
4. Brief Description (describe the recommendation, issues it will address and why itdeserves implementation – e.g. program activity; need addressed; who and how many served; number of jobs created or sustained; other organizations’ roles or partnerships; measurable outcomes to be achieved; benefits to community:
In order to address the ever-changing needs of businesses, the city’s investment policy should be re-evaluated to determine if there are changes that can be made to make Jacksonville even more competitive. The Public Investment Policy should be a tool toincentivize business growth that is appealing to policy makers. The following are among themost critical changes that should be considered.
 
Develop more creative public-private partnership structures with companieslooking to invest large amounts of capital in new facilities.
 
Create a local closing fund to help the city win more projects.
 
Create an incentive for companies that are increasing their importing or exporting through JAXPORT
 
Create more aggressive incentives for targeted industries to locate downtown.
 
Eliminate self-imposed restrictions on using state Enterprise Zone and Brownfieldincentives in downtown.
 
Create incentives for retailers to locate downtown.8/5/2011 11:40:58 AM
 
 
 
Develop a revolving loan program and/or grant program for façade improvementsdowntown.
 
Encourage the rehabilitation of buildings through a permit assistance program that will reduce 50% of the permit cost for the rehabilitation of empty and/ordilapidated commercial buildings. The public investment policy and strategy (in effect, our total tool kit) should be reviewed inthe process of the transition in order to focus on those things that create the most jobs inthe shortest period of time and help Jacksonville return to full employment. Also, otherchanges in the ease of use of the Enterprise Zone and Brownfields in line with the statestatues would be helpful. Jacksonville suffers from some of the highest electricity rates in the state and southeast which raise the cost of doing business for manufacturers. Local government can assistmanufacturers who's electric rates, including taxes, make them uncompetitive. The rates in Jacksonville are estimated to be 50 percent higher than all other 11 southeastern states. JEA'snew discounted rate for manufacturers is key to a more aggressive approach to grow thissector of business in Jacksonville. Mayor Brown should explore the elimination, for a periodof time, or a reduction or ceiling for manufacturing customers, regarding the 10 percent localoption public service tax paid to the JEA. The 10 percent is paid on the base charge and noton the fuel charge. This will have a negligible effect on tax revenue with a substantial up-tick in competitiveness for this targeted business group.
5. Organizations or agencies that will implement and coordinate program:
 
Cornerstone Regional Development Partnership
 
 Jacksonville Economic Development Commission
 
City of Jacksonville
 
 JEA
6. Budget: Total program cost:
Undetermined at this time
 Amount of capital investment:
No fiscal impact
Initial operating investment:
No fiscal impact
 Annual budget for maintaining recommendations with annual percentage of increase anticipated:
Undetermined at this time- 2 of 3 -

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