Manufacturing Incentives Encourage Economic Growth

Beth Kirkland, Executive Director, EDC

Having a well-defined target audience is important for any business or organization, and the Economic Development Council of Tallahassee/Leon County is no exception. Although in our case, we have six. While we seek out and follow-up with all opportunities to enhance local business and attract innovative companies to our area, there are a half dozen specific industry sectors that match up particularly well with our community goals and resources.

These sectors are: Health Sciences & Human Performance Enhancement, Information Technology, Renewable Energy and the Environment, Aviation and Aerospace, Transportation & Logistics, and Engineering & Research (which includes Manufacturing).

Over the years, the EDC has been leading the charge in developing opportunities associated with these sectors by creating industry roundtables for each area and aligning with state and national advocacy groups for information and sector-dependent resources. Several roundtables have either evolved into an independent organization or become a chapter of larger group.

Such is the case with the Capital Region Manufacturers, a member of the Manufacturers Association of Florida (MAF), an advocacy organization that serves to improve the business climate for manufacturers in the state.

As reported by Tallahassee Democrat Business Editor Dave Hodges, MAF Executive Director Nancy Stephens addressed the Capital Region Manufacturers Roundtable last week, and encouraged attendees that manufacturers of all sizes will play a significant role in getting us through the remnants of the recession. “The public is depending on manufacturers to pull us out of this down economy,” she told the gathering at the Advanced Manufacturing Training Center at Tallahassee Community College.

To help make that happen, Capital Region Manufacturers and MAF supported the passage of a new incentive program that encourages capital investment and job creation in manufacturing (as well as spaceport activities) in Florida.

The program, which was passed in this year’s legislative session, provides a tax refund of up to $50,000 on the state Sales and Use Tax paid for eligible equipment purchases. Applications are being accepted through June 30, 2012, so there is plenty of time for manufacturing companies already in our community, as well as those considering a move here, to take advantage of the tax break.

Of course, there are restrictions, but simply put, if a company manufactures, processes, compounds, or produces items for sale that are of tangible personal property and the purchase cost exceeds the business’ total expenditures on eligible equipment purchased and placed into service in this state during the 2008 tax year, then they are eligible for the refund.

Incentives like this are great, but are too often underutilized. Every year, the EDC helps area businesses take advantage of thousands of dollars in tax refunds and credits, training grants and Enterprise Zone incentives. But there is more out there.

This is no time to leave money on the table. Call us and let our staff research the possibilities for you. You may be pleasantly surprised.

For details on the manufacturing incentive program, go to and click on the news section or contact Kara Palmer at