Development Incentives & Financing Tools
Enterprise Zone Tax Incentives
Lucas County permits companies that are expanding or creating jobs in the County to obtain a tax exemption on real property taxes. Interested companies must invest a minimum of $100,000 and create 5 jobs that pay at least 150% of minimum wage. Eligible firms may receive an exemption for 10 years of up to 75% in municipalities and 60% in townships. Similar programs are also available in Toledo, Maumee, Berkey or Richfield, Washington, and Harding townships.
Community Reinvestment Area (CRA)
CRAs provide local real property tax incentives for residents and businesses that invest in designated areas in Ohio. The program provides up to a 100% exemption of the improved real property tax valuation for up to 15 years, depending on the project. Rates and terms are established by local legislative authorities and in some cases local school board approval is required. Incentives are available for residential, commercial, and industrial projects that involve renovation or new construction.
Lucas County Builds
Lucas County Builds is a revolving loan fund designed to assist in providing gap financing to further economic development and job creation activities in Lucas County. This fund is designed to be responsive to the needs of businesses in Lucas County and has funded 3 projects to date that have created 370 jobs and over $20,000,000 of investment.
Tax Increment Financing
The Tax Increment Financing (TIF) program permits Service Payments-in-Lieu of real property taxes to be used to finance public infrastructure improvements directly supporting an improvement project declared to have a "public purpose." Lucas County offers up to 75% exemption of real property taxes for up to 10 years. However, an annual service Payment-in-Lieu of taxes is required. The Payment-in-Lieu of taxes cannot exceed the annual debt services of the notes or bonds used to finance the specified public infrastructure improvements. The Lucas County Board of Commissioners must approve the TIF contract.
Roadwork Development (629) Grants
Roadwork Development Grants are awarded for public roadwork improvements through the Ohio Development Services Agency that supports the expansion or attraction of businesses. Eligible costs include widening, paving, road construction and reconstruction, and right-of-way infrastructure improvements such as sewer or utility lines. Local governments, port authorities, or companies may apply for these grants. The Regional Growth Partnership serves as the initial point of contact for potential applicants in Northwest Ohio. JobsOhio and their regional partners market these funds and manage the application process through grant approval. Approved grants are managed by ODSA’s Office of Strategic Business Investments. The program responsibilities include: drafting grant agreements, post-approval project/agreement servicing, disbursement of funds, upholding the terms and conditions of the grant agreement, reviewing annual jobs reports, and providing technical supports to existing grantees.
The State Infrastructure Bank (SIB)
The Ohio Department of Transportation (ODOT) maintains the SIB as a direct loan and bond financing program to develop transportation facilities throughout Ohio. The SIB is used to fund highway, rail, transit, intermodal, and other transportation facilities and projects which produce revenue to amortize debt. Projects considered are those that will contribute to the connectivity of Ohio’s transportation system and further goals such as corridor completion and economic development that enhances Ohio’s competitiveness in a global economy. ODOT is the primary decision maker for eligible projects and the approval process is managed by the ODOT SIB Loan Committee.
Joint Economic Development Districts (JEDD), Joint Economic Development Zones
These are special purpose districts created by contract between a combination of municipal corporations and townships. JEDDS allow for the levying of a district-wide income tax and the provision of municipal services in unincorporated areas to facilitate economic development. JED-Zones allow for the levying of a zone-wide income tax on individuals working within the zone and on businesses located there for the purpose of facilitating new or expanded growth. There are two JED-Zones in Lucas County.
Workforce Development Solutions
Hiring workers can be a time-consuming, expensive process and Lucas County, through our partnership with OhioMeansJobs Lucas County, can assist companies by posting open positions, matching qualified candidates to those opportunities, and referring them directly to the employers. In addition, businesses can access meeting rooms at the one-stop center for group application sessions, interviews, and orientations. These, and other free services, are available to all companies, regardless of size or industry.
Growing companies often need to grow their workforce as well and Lucas County can assist by sharing the costs related to training new and existing employees. New hires need new skills that can often be learned on-the-job but training these workers has a cost. Through On-the-Job Training, up to half the wages earned by the new employee can be reimbursed to the company. Current workers, those needing to upgrade skills to keep the business competitive, can also be trained through the Lucas County Incumbent Worker Training Program which will reimburse a portion of the costs related to training these employees.