Vernon council OKs Enterprise Zone changes

Published: Tuesday, September 24, 2013 at 01:59 PM.

VERNON — The Vernon City Council took about 30 seconds Monday to approve adding a mile to the city’s Enterprise Zone.

The Enterprise Zone extension was discussed in length at last week’s council workshop, where Washington County Chamber of Commerce Executive Director Ted Everett proposed expanding the city’s Enterprise Zone down Moss Hill Road.

An Enterprise Zone is a state-created area for industrial or commercial development that offers incentives to businesses in order to create jobs. Those incentives include jobs creation tax credits, electrical energy tax credits, sales tax refunds for jobs creation and building materials, property tax credits for jobs creation and sales tax refunds for business equipment and machinery.

Last year the state Legislature passed a new law allowing counties to expand their Enterprise Zones, and Washington County will be allowed to expand its areas by three miles, which Everett plans to divide evenly between Ebro and Vernon.

Everett visited the Vernon council’s workshop on Sept. 16 to discuss possible expansion plans for Vernon’s Enterprise Zone.

Currently the city has its Enterprise Zone located mainly along Highway 79. Everett suggested the city council consider extending the zone an additional 1 ¾ mile, the amount by which he hopes to expand the zone, along Mossy Hill Road toward the high school.

The council was told that the school district owns property behind the school’s campus, which could potentially be purchased by the city and used as an industrial site.

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