Economic challenges in the past decade have forced communities to adopt innovative measures to help businesses remain competitive or even survive. As we slowly recover from the fiscal doldrums, municipalities may wish to revisit these programs to ensure maximum cost-effectiveness, ample job creation in our commercial districts, and strengthening of the overall tax base.
One such community, the Town of Kent, has amended its “Business Investment Exemption” in a significant move to entice new business construction and existing business alterations and improvements. Real property “for the purpose of commercial, business or industrial activity” will now be exempt “of 50% of the increase in assessed value thereof attributable to such construction, alteration, installation or improvement” in the first year and then extending for 9 (increased from 4) additional years on a declining scale of 5 % each year. This extends a meaningful welcome to new and existing businesses while adding to the town’s economic vitality with approved growth and local employment opportunities. Henry Boyd, President of the Carmel-Kent Chamber of Commerce, stated in a letter of support that “this kind of forward-thinking approach to motivate businesses and attract investors is truly welcome”.
The Putnam EDC and IDA are working to attract new businesses into our County and the IDA can also offer state authorized incentives to new and expanding businesses. Additionally, Putnam County with its towns and villages is organizing an over-all feasibility study that will guide effective planning for the projects necessary to develop and enhance tourism, arts and recreation efforts that have been recognized as our County’s great assets. If done in a coordinated manner, these measures should provide the resources necessary to drive business forward and build a stronger economy for all. The Putnam County Chambers of Commerce is working with its local participating organizations to evaluate these ideas and formulate plans with elected officials.
– Jennifer Maher, Chairwoman, the Putnam County Chambers of Commerce