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Rural Area of Opportunity

Holmes County is a Rural Area of Opportunity (RAO) designated by the Florida Legislature. Florida encourages growth throughout the state by encouraging incentive awards and lower wage qualifications thresholds in its rural counties. The Holmes County Development Commission takes advantages of special RAO incentives when promoting new and expanding business opportunities.

Florida Sales & Use Tax Exemptions

• Machinery and equipment used by a new or expanding Florida business to manufacture, produce or process tangible personal property for sale
• Labor, parts and materials used in repair of and incorporated into machinery and equipment
• Electricity used in the manufacturing process
• Certain boiler fuels (including natural gas) used in the manufacturing process
• Semiconductor, defense and space technology-based industry transactions involving manufacturing equipment
• Machinery and equipment used predominantly in research and development
• Labor component of research and development expenditures
• Commercial space activity — launch vehicles, payloads and fuel, machinery and equipment for production of items used exclusively at Spaceport Florida
• Aircraft parts, modification, maintenance and repair, sale or lease of qualified aircraft
• Production companies engaged in Florida in the production of motion pictures, made for television motion pictures, television series, commercial music videos or sound recordings.

Local Incentives

Ad-Valorem Tax Exemption
• Available to qualified new, expanding and existing businesses
• The length of time that the exemption will be in effect will be based on the number of permanent full time jobs created by the project. Jobs must be created and employees hired within the first year the exemption is in effect.
• Application must be approved by the Holmes Co. Board of County Commissioners

State Incentives

Florida Personal Income Tax
•Unlike other states, Florida has NO personal income tax.

Qualified Target Industry Tax Refund (QTI)
• Available for companies that create high wage jobs in targeted high value-added industries.
• Includes refunds on corporate income, sales, ad valorem, intangible personal property, insurance premium, and certain other taxes.
• Pre-approved applicants who create jobs in Florida receive tax refunds of:
• Available for companies that create high wage jobs in targeted high value-added industries.
• $3,000 per net new job; $6,000 in an Enterprise Zoneor Rural Community (county).
• For businesses paying 150 percent of the average annual wage, add $1,000 per job.
• For businesses paying 200 percent of the average annual salary, add $2,000 per job.
• Businesses falling within a designated high impact sector or increasing exports of its goods through a seaport or airport in the state by at least 10 percent in value or tonnage in each year of receiving a QTI refund, add $2,000 per job.
• Projects locating in a designated Brownfield area (Brownfield Bonus) can add $2,500 per job.

Qualified Defense and Space Contractor Tax Refund (QDSC)
• Gives Florida defense, homeland security, and space business contractors a competitive edge in consolidating contracts or subcontracts, acquiring new contracts, or converting contracts to commercial production.
• Pre-approved applicants creating or retaining jobs in Florida may receive tax refunds of $3,000 per net new Florida full-time equivalent job created or retained.
• $6,000 in an Enterprise Zoneor rural county.
• For businesses paying 150 percent of the average annual wage, add $1,000 per job.
• For businesses paying 200 percent of the average annual salary, add $2,000 per job.

Capital Investment Tax Credit (CITC)
• Used to attract and grow capital-intensive industries in Florida.
• Annual credit, provided for up to twenty years, against the corporate income tax.
• Eligible projects are those in designated high-impact portions of the following sectors: clean energy, biomedical technology, financial services, information technology, silicon technology, transportation equipment manufacturing, or be a corporate headquarters facility.
• Projects must also create a minimum of 100 jobs and invest at least $25 million in eligible capital costs. Eligible capital costs include all expenses incurred in the acquisition, construction, installation, and equipping of a project from the beginning of construction to the commencement of operations.
• Annual credit determined by the level of investment and the project’s Florida corporate income tax liability for the 20 years following commencement.

High Impact Performance Incentive Grant (HIPI)
• A negotiated grant used to attract and grow major high-impact facilities in Florida.
• Grants are provided to pre-approved applicants in certain high-impact sectors designated by the State of Florida. Grant requirements:
• Operate within designated high-impact portions of the following sectors– clean energy, corporate headquarters, financial services, life sciences, semiconductors, and transportation equipment manufacturing.
• Create at least 50 new full-time equivalent jobs (if a R&D facility, create at least 25 new full-time equivalent jobs) in Florida in a three-year period.
• And make a cumulative investment in the state of at least $50 million (if a R&D facility, make a cumulative investment of at least $25 million) in a three-year period.
• Once approved, the high impact business is awarded 50 percent of the eligible grant upon commencement of operations and the balance of the awarded grant once full employment and capital investment goals are met.

Local Government Distressed Area Matching Grant Program (LDMG)
• Stimulates investment in Florida’s economy by assisting local governments in attracting and retaining targeted businesses.
• Applications are accepted from local governments/municipalities that plan on offering financial assistance to a specific business in the area.
• Targeted businesses are required to create at least 15 full-time jobs and the project must either be new to Florida; expanding operations in Florida; or leaving Florida unless it receives local and state government assistance.
• The amount awarded by the State of Florida will equal $50,000 or 50% of the local government’s assistance amount, whichever is less, and be provided following the commitment and payment of that assistance.