As discussed in the previous post, Texas is unique from other states. Not only are the majority of our incentives offered at the local level but our state incentives match the grandeur which everyone has come to expect from Texas. The following is an overview of the most common economic development incentives offered at the state level.
TEXAS ENTERPRISE FUND
Texas is known for going big, a characteristic that carries over into the Texas Enterprise Fund, the original ‘deal closing’ fund. The Texas Enterprise Fund is a cash grant used as a financial incentive tool for projects that (a) offer significant projected job creation and capital investment and (b) are actively considering another state.
The Texas Enterprise Fund began in 2004 and has since awarded over 140 grants amounting to nearly $600 million. Additionally, grants have gone to multiple industries and projects that have committed to create more than 80,000 jobs.
Several tick boxes must be checked before a business is eligible to receive a Texas Enterprise Fund grant.
- Local Involvement – Companies must first qualify for a local incentive.
- Application – Companies must submit an application; the SEDC can assist with the application process.
- Competition – grants are reserved for those projects where a single Texas site is in competition with a site in another state.
- Job Creation & Capital Investment – significant job creation and capital investment matters (75+ jobs and $33.8M are good benchmarks based on past recipients)
- High Paying Jobs – jobs by themselves are not enough. The company’s wages must surpass the average wage of the county where the project is located – in Schertz this means in either Comal, Guadalupe, or Bexar county.
- Rate of Return – projects must demonstrate a significant rate of return on public dollars.
Hulu recently benefited from a Texas Enterprise Fund grant, receiving $1.3 million when they opened a new customer service center in San Antonio. The project created 300-500 new jobs and began operations in November 2017.
Caterpillar, which has operations in Schertz, received $8.5 million in August 2009 from the Fund. The company’s project created over 1,500 jobs. These are just some of the recipients in the Schertz region that have benefited from this unique resource.
SKILLS DEVELOPMENT FUND
A well trained workforce is key for all companies, but keeping up with evolving on-the-job skills can be challenging. The Skills Development Fund, overseen by the Texas Workforce Commission (TWC), aims to address this concern. The Skills Development Fund provides state-funded skills grants focused on customized employee training.
The Skills Development Fund works thanks to a collaboration between several partners: the employer, a college partner, who provides the training; the TWC, who provides the funding, and the SEDC, who assists with filling out the application.
To give a better idea of the financial contribution provided through the Skills Development Fund, from 1996 to 2017, the Alamo region, where Schertz is located, received almost $56 million in funding according to TWC’s ‘Legislative Annual Report: Fiscal Year 2017’.
TEXAS AND SCHERTZ – BUSINESS READY
Texas is wide open for business and both the Texas Enterprise Fund and the Skills Development Fund demonstrate this commitment.
Navigating the incentive environment can be tricky, but we are here to help. If you are interested in having a more in-depth conversation about how these programs apply to your business, contact our office at (210) 619-1070.