What is an Enterprise Zone?
Oregon’s Enterprise Zones offer a unique resource to local communities, unmatched by any other business incentive. Besides this short-term property tax abatement, an Enterprise Zone lends visibility and focus to local economic development efforts.
The Enterprise Zone, through a short-term tax exemption, induces eligible business firms to make additional investments that will improve employment opportunities, spur economic growth, diversify business activity and contribute to competitiveness in economically distressed areas of the state.
These zones offer a 100% abatement for three consecutive years from the property taxes assessed on new capital of private companies seeking to start or enlarge operations. By forgiving the local property taxes on new buildings and equipment for three years, enterprise zones have led to thousands of new jobs through investments by eligible business operations. Local jurisdictions may also extend the property tax exemption up to five consecutive years for especially high paying jobs, and if additional local requirements are met by the business firm.
Sponsored by local city and/or county governments, an enterprise zone is a discrete area or areas no larger than 12 square miles in total size. The maximum number of zones allowed in Oregon is 37. Each Enterprise Zone terminates after 10 years of existence. Subject to local economic hardship and potential competition among applicants for available zones, the Director of the Oregon Economic Development Department designates zones to replace those that have terminated. County assessors and local zone managers handle the day-to-day oversight of their Enterprise Zones and business assistance, with support and coordination from state agencies.
The incentive for new private investment and employment may be critical for healthy employment growth and business diversification.
Eligible business firms must "pre-certify" prior to commencing construction. Such firms include manufacturers, processors, shippers and other operations that serve businesses. Retail, construction, financial and certain other activities are not eligible. Qualified property is limited to new buildings, additions, equipment and machinery.
Besides being engaged in an eligible operation/activity, requirements in order for a business firm to receive an Enterprise Zone exemption are as follows:
- New full-time jobs within the zone (minimum 10% increase)
- Maintenance of employment levels during exemption period
- Restrictions on job losses outside the zone
- First-source hiring agreement with local job training providers
- Local additional conditions in urban zones.
About the Redmond Enterprise Zone
The Redmond Enterprise Zone was established in 1988. Since September 2006, there have been 99 businesses approved into the Redmond Enterprise Zone, creating over 1600 new jobs, with total improvement valuations of $91,343,499. On June 30, 1998, the Redmond Enterprise Zone was due to sunset. Through a competitive process, Redmond qualified and was approved for continuance of the Redmond Enterprise Zone until the year 2008.
Eligible business firms provide goods, products or services to other business operations. This includes not only conventional manufacturing and industrial activities, but also processing plants, distribution centers, maintenance facilities, warehouses, and even some operations that handle bulk clerical tasks or after-sales technical support.
Regardless of whether they are performed for other businesses, the following and similar activities are NOT eligible: entertainment, tourism, health care, child care, serving meals, finance, housing, property management, leasing space, construction and sales of goods or services at the retail level.
The Local Incentive Package
The City of Redmond offers a substantial local benefit package. The program waives entirely the following permit and user fees for eligible businesses:
- Water deposit, Water hook-up fee for sprinkler systems*, Water hook-up and meter fee for domestic water*, Sewer hook-up fee*, Rock excavation deposit;
- Conditional use fees, Partitioning fees, Plan amendment fees, Site and design review, Sign Permit fees, Solar access permit fees;
- Street dedication fees, Street vacation fees
- Annexation fees, P.U.D. fees, Sidewalk permit fees
- Driveway permit fees, Public improvement plan checks and inspection fees(does not include engineering fees), Tie down fees for corporate aircraft for three years (limit two registered aircraft per firm)
* The City waives administrative, labor and overhead costs. The Applicant is responsible for all hardware costs.
Additionally, the City of Redmond will discount the following fees as follows for eligible businesses:
- 25% reduction in monthly water and sewer user charges for a three year period.
- 2% per FTE (full time employee) job created in the cost of building permits up to a maximum 40% discount.
- 1% per FTE job created in the cost of Systems Development Charges up to a maximum 25% discount.
The City of Redmond has adopted a streamline process with limited hearing and notification requirements to expedite all building and land use permits. The City will give processing priority to eligible employers that are locating or expanding in the Enterprise Zone.
Links & Forms
State of Oregon Enterprise Zone Information and Forms
Oregon Enterprise Zone Guidebook 4th Edition (Rev. 10-03)
Authorization Application Form 150-303-029 (Rev. 03-06)
Exemption Claim Form 150-310-075 (Rev. 03-06)
Property Schedule Form 150-310-076 (Rev. 03-06)
Construction-in-Progress Form 150-310-020 (Rev. 03-06)
|These forms are replicas of the Oregon Department of Revenue´s official forms. They may be printed, filled out, and filed with the Oregon Department of Revenue. You must have Adobe Reader to download the forms to your computer.
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For more information, please contact Jon Stark, Economic Development Manager, Redmond Economic Development 411 SW 9th Street, Suite 203 Redmond, Oregon 97756, 541-923-5223 or email Jon@edcoinfo.com