Tuesday, January 31, 2012

Ringling Bros. Circus Will Remain in Manatee County

Feld Entertainment announced that it is moving its production headquarters from the City of Palmetto to the City of Ellenton.  According to the article in the Herald Tribune (http://www.heraldtribune.com/article/20120130/article/120139968), the company is relocating to accommodate growth. With this move, Feld Entertainment will be able to retain 148 current jobs and create an additional 235 new jobs in Manatee County.  

Feld Entertainment will get some assistance from economic incentives like the QTI and Quick Action Closing Fund programs.

Wednesday, January 11, 2012

Skilled manufacturing jobs emerge in South Florida

I recently read an article written http://sunsent.nl/zevaZe.

Companies like these can benefit greatly from Florida's Workforce Training Grants.  These grants help defray the cost of training their workforce to increase their efficiency, competitiveness and ultimately their profitability.

Tuesday, January 10, 2012

QTI Compliance Reporting Process

Over the years, businesses have inquired about the economic incentive compliance process.  In this blog post, I wanted to provide you with a list of important dates and timelines associated with the Claims or Payment Process of Florida's economic incentive programs, like QTI.

Important Dates/Timelines

QTI Claim Process

October / November
Business Receives Claim Application from the State’s Agent - It is usually at this time that businesses are alerted about their incentive project.
December 31st
QTI Jobs and Wage Implementation date - Business has to meet its project goals by this date.
January 31st
Claim Application due - Businesses are required to submit their claim application to Sharpton, Brunson & Company (agent for Department of Economic Opportunity) for review and approval of the scheduled payment.

This is the most crucial part of the economic incentive compliance process.  In order to receive the scheduled payment, a business must prove to the State that the obligations set forth in its incentive agreement have been met.  The claim application must be supported by accurate data and reported in a format acceptable by the State.

Business have an opportunity to request a one-time 30 day extension.
March 1st 
QTI Claim Application due – if an extension was granted, a business has until this date to submit its claim application and ALL supporting documents to the State's agent for processing.
January - June
Sharpton, Brunson & Company (SBC) verifies that the compliance goals have been achieved.  Once SBC verifies that the business is eligible to receive its scheduled payment, a recommendation is prepared and submitted to the State for approval/denial of the payment.
July 1st
July 1st marks the beginning of the State's 2012/2013 fiscal year.  Funds for economic incentive programs, like Brownfield and QTI are appropriated by the State to begin processing payments. 

Once The Department of Economic Opportunity (DEO) receives the local match payments from local governments, they begin the payment approval process.  When a business' claim application and supporting documents are approved, the business is notified of either an approval or denial of its scheduled payment.  The payment is made within 21 business days if there are no disputes.

Remember that this process is similar for most claim-based economic development incentive programs as well.  So, if you are a participant of a Quick Action Closing Fund Program or the Brownfield Redevelopment and Qualified Defense and Space Contractor Tax Refund Programs, you will follow this process.

In order for your claim process to be as efficient as possible, you must be proactive with your project.  Do not wait until the payment request is due to begin analyzing your project goals.  To find out how we can help you maximize your payment, give me a call (850-727-0293) or email me at mt@marlynnconsulting.com.

Tuesday, January 3, 2012

Governor Rick Scott's Attempt at Job Creation is Graded

An article in the Orlando Sentinel titled, "Gov. Rick Scott's jobs agency gives itself good grades" (see full article - http://thesent.nl/vF3Pqg), Enterprise Florida evaluates the number of jobs created by businesses participating in economic incentive programs, like QTI, Closing Fund and Brownfield Redevelopment.  Florida's job creation agency noted that active participants in the QTI program during the fiscal year ended June 30, 2011, created 10 percent more jobs than their contracts required.

Likewise, The state's Department of Economic Opportunity also confirmed that 93 businesses with completed QTI agreements created 56 percent more jobs than they were obligated to create.

Now you may be curious as to what these numbers mean to Florida taxpayers?  These numbers mean that for the most part, many businesses who pursue the State of Florida for relocation or expansion opportunities have met the requirements of their economic incentive agreements.  Unfortunately, other businesses were unable to meet their job commitments due to the downturn of the economy. 

It is the hope of all Economic Development Professionals that 2012 brings a significant upswing in the economy to allow these businesses to recover.  This would give Florida business owners more confidence, and would encourage their ability to grow their workforce - thus creating quality Florida jobs.