After the passage of the 4A Economic Development Sales Tax in 1992 by the citizens of Brownsville, came the subsequent funding of the Greater Brownsville Incentives Corporation (GBIC), which was formed to oversee the disbursement of a ¼ cent sales tax collected in Brownsville. The GBIC board, appointed by the Brownsville City Commission approves funding for job creation incentives and various grant programs related to infrastructure and education.
A qualifying company could expect Job Creation Incentives from the GBIC and these incentives normally range from $2,000 to $10,000 per job. The Job Creation Incentives are performance based and usually paid after anniversary date reviews and the program seeks to reward those companies that pay wages in excess of $10 per hour and provide benefits to their employees.
To qualify for incentives the applying company must be willing to provide financial data on their company, including and not limited to audited financials and federal tax returns for the previous three years and all information is handled confidentially. Once due diligence is completed on the company and an economic impact analysis is completed, an incentives offer is prepared and submitted for approval by the GBIC.
Job Creation Incentives are used to support new companies to Brownsville and established local companies that are considered to be primary job creators. Due to the nature of the incentives and the due diligence required, startup companies are not normally considered for incentives under the Job Creation Incentives program. Other programs may be more suitable in support of startups.
Other incentive type programs may also be considered in Brownsville, such as Tax Abatements, both five and ten years, that abate property taxes over the life of the abatement agreement normally at a rate of 50%. Entities that have traditionally supported tax abatements and that can legally do so are:
- City of Brownsville
- Cameron County
- Brownsville Navigation District
- Independent school districts do not abate property taxes.
Additional local programs that could be considered include (contact the BEDC for additional information):
- CHAPTER 380
- CHAPTER 313
- IRB Bonds
The State of Texas also has a chest of incentives available, although not all may apply to a given company, such as:
- Texas Enterprise Fund
- Emerging Technology Program
- Texas Enterprise Zone Program
- Texas Capital Fund Infrastructure Program
- Texas Capital Fund Real Estate Development Program
- Rural Municipal Finance Program
- State Sales and Use Tax Exemptions
- Texas Industry Development Program
- Texas Leverage Fund
- Section 108
- Texas Economic Development Act
- Ad Valorem/Property Tax Exemption
- Property Tax Rule 9.105
- Renewable Energy Incentives
- Permit Assistance
- Moving Image Industry Incentive Program
- Economic Development and Diversification In-State Tuition for Employees
For additional information on these state incentives, contact the BEDC or visit www.texaswideopenforbusiness.com