April 27, 2012: The City Commission unanimously voted to establish the Delray Beach Economic Development Fund to support citywide economic opportunities (i.e., financial incentives) to attract and/or retain jobs as well as to increase the City’s tax base. This Fund has been set up to serve as the funding mechanism to provide the required financial match to leverage State and County financial incentives for the retention and recruitment of businesses to Delray Beach. Further, the Economic Development Fund will enable the City to “level the playing field” with regards to offering financial tools similar to those that are utilized by the most competitive communities - locally, regionally and around the state.
Funding to support citywide economic opportunities through the Economic Development Fund will be provided from the City's unrestricted General Fund reserves - up to a total of one million dollars ($1,000,000). However, this funding will only be available for distribution to qualified targeted businesses and industries that meet the City’s economic development goals:
• Improve the perception of Delray Beach as business friendly and a viable corporate destination
• Grow sustainable & livable wage jobs (retention and creation)
• Encourage entrepreneurship (new and existing)
• Increase the Delray Beach tax base
The Economic Development Fund will help the City to support the local match (generally 20% of total state and/or county financial incentive awarded) that is required to receive State and/or County funding (generally providing the remaining 80%).
Funds from this new Economic Development Fund are not expected to be utilized “at one time” or “within a short period of time.” Instead, the process of receiving a commitment from an existing and/or new business to expand and/or relocate to the City of Delray Beach and create new jobs and tax base is an extended process. Thus, funds are not expected to be authorized immediately or all at once. In addition, all expenditures from this fund will only be authorized following review and approval by the City Commission.
By creating the Delray Beach Economic Development Fund and ensuring that funding is available, the City is now providing an opportunity to actively compete with other local, regional and statewide communities for expanding job and economic opportunities within our City while at the same time increasing the City’s tax base.
“This has been needed for quite some time,” stated Mayor Nelson “Woodie” McDuffie. “The City could not afford to miss an opportunity to allocate funding that will assist in creating new jobs in Delray Beach while helping to support our economy. The new Delray Beach Economic Development Fund, along with the recently created Delray Beach Innovation Corridor along Congress Avenue, is a great step forward to making our City more sustainable and a better place to live, work and play.”
For more information on the City’s Economic Development Fund and/or applying for citywide financial incentives, contact the City’s Economic Development Director at 561.276.8640 or by E-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org and/or the City’s Public Information Office at 561.243.7190 or E-mail email@example.com.
The State of Florida offers various financial incentive programs through the Department of Economic Opportunity (www.floridajobs.org) and Enterprise Florida, Inc.(www.eflorida.com) that would require a local match from the City’s Economic Development Fund include, but are not limited to, the Qualified Target Industry Refund Program (QTI), the Governor's Quick Action Closing Fund and the Economic Development Transportation Fund Road Fund. The Palm Beach County Department of Economic Sustainability also provides numerous financial incentives that may require a local match (www.co.palm-beach.fl.us/edo). Following approval by the Commission to establish the Delray Beach Economic Development Fund to support the local match for State and County financial incentive programs, staff will immediately begin to develop specific program guidelines for a local (citywide) financial incentive program.
Nelson S. "Woodie" McDuffie, Mayor
Thomas Carney, Vice-Mayor
Adam Frankel, Deputy Vice-Mayor
Angeleta Gray, Commissioner
Al Jacquet, Commissioner