As the state's capital with no personal income tax, no sales tax and low professional business taxes, Concord offers your business a unique advantage benefitting your bottom line. The City government is committed to working closely with new and expanding businesses by offering a variety of economic development incentives.
Incentives & Tax Credits
Brownfields Tax Abatement
Under NH state law, RSA 76:19-a, the City may grant a brownfields tax abatement in order to encourage economic development projects. A brownfield site is defined by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency as “real property, the expansion, redevelopment, or reuse of which may be complicated by the presence or potential presence of a hazardous substance, pollutant, or contaminant.” Under RSA 76:19-a, the Concord City Council may approve a property tax abatement in an amount equal to “prior years' taxes and accrued interest…as it shall deem just and equitable.” To be eligible, the property must be enrolled in the State’s Brownfields Program, administered by the NH Department of Environmental Services.
CDIP Tax Credit Program
Eligible entities may apply to the NH Community Development Finance Authority for an allocation of Community Development Investment Program (CDIP) Tax Credits, to help finance a variety of projects which create economic and community development benefits. Maximum awards are $700,000. Approximately 80% of awarded funds are directly available to finance a project. Businesses may receive a 75% state tax credit against a donation made to any approved project, which may be applied against the state business taxes. Concord projects that have used this flexible form of financing include the League of New Hampshire Craftsmen for their new headquarters at 49 South Main Street, the Red River Theatre for digital projection equipment upgrades, and the Grappone Conference Center located at Horseshoe Pond.
Community Development Block Grants
The City of Concord is eligible to apply for Community Development Block Grant funds to support economic development, public facilities and affordable housing projects. Concord has received more than $19 million dollars in block grant funding over the past 40 years. The City has used economic development CDBG funding:
a) To build infrastructure to support the development of commercial and industrial properties;
b) To increase job capacity for two local manufacturers; and
c) To hire a staff and pay for expenses in the establishment of a local area bank pool for economic development within the Merrimack County.
Opportunities for creative partnerships with the City utilizing Community Development Block Grant funding are available.
Economic Revitalization Zone (“ERZ”) Tax Credits
Concord has two designated ERZ areas - one encompasses the Penacook Tax Increment Finance District and the other is the Whitney Road corridor. Businesses making a certain level of capital investment and creating new jobs are eligible to apply for ERZ Tax Credits, which can be used to offset tax liabilities against the state’s business profits and enterprise taxes.
Historic Tax Credits
Development projects which preserve and renovate a “historic” building may qualify for Federal Historic Tax Credits. A 20% income tax credit is available for the rehabilitation of historic, income-producing buildings that are determined by the Secretary of the Interior, through the National Park Service, to be “certified historic structures.” All renovations under the 20% program must comply with the Secretary of the Interior’s Standards for Rehabilitation of historic structures. The US Internal Revenue Service defines qualified rehabilitation expenses on which the credit may be taken. Owner-occupied residential properties do not qualify for the federal rehabilitation tax credit.
Land & Community Heritage Grants
Eligible communities and non-profit entities may apply to the NH Land and Community Heritage Investment Program (LCHIP) for matching grants up to $500,000 for the conservation and preservation of NH’s significant natural, cultural, and historic resources. Since the program’s inception, a total of $37 million has been invested.
New Market Tax Credits
Property within certain federal census tracts within the City of Concord may be eligible for the federal New Market Tax Credit Program. Implemented in 2000, projects utilizing this program are eligible for 39% tax credit on the total project cost over a seven-year period. For real estate development projects, the tax credit can be claimed directly by the developer of the project, or sold in order to raise equity for a project. These tax credits must be secured from “Community Development Entities” (“CDEs”) which have been awarded credits from the US Department of Treasury. Area CDEs having credits to invest in projects include the NH Business Finance Authority, Coastal Enterprises based in Portland Maine, the Mascoma Savings Bank, and the Massachusetts Housing Investment Corporation. Projects developed in Concord using New Market Tax Credits include the Smile Building at 45 South Main Street and Love Your Neighbor Building at 49 South Main Street.
REVOLVING LOAN FUND PROGRAM
Established in 1983, the City’s Revolving Loan Fund (RLF) program was capitalized with a Community Development Block Grant and as such, the City typically requires that loans are used to create economic development and improved housing opportunities to benefit low and moderate income residents. Today, the City’s RLF program has a portfolio of 20 loans totaling approximately $1million.
RSA 79-E COMMUNITY REVITALIZATION TAX RELIEF INCENTIVE
RSA 79-E is a local option statute designed to support revitalization of downtown and village centers by providing property tax incentives for qualifying development projects. Properties located outside of the downtown or village center must be an historic property as defined in RSA 79-E:2. The incentive allows for a property owner to forgo property taxes associated with real estate improvements for a period of up to 15 years. Projects located within the downtown or Penacook Village RSA 79-E District must have budgets which are at least 15% of the structure’s assessed value, or $75,000, whichever is less. Projects located outside either district must have costs which are 25% of the structure’s assessed value or $250,000, whichever is less.
TAX INCREMENT FINANCING
In accordance with state law, the City has the ability to create Tax Increment Finance districts to capture and retain all, or a portion of, property tax revenues generated by new real estate development within such districts. The revenues allocated to the districts are then used to support infrastructure construction and maintenance. Currently, the City has three TIF districts which combined encompass approximately 137 acres. Since their inception, the City has made a total investment of more than $25 million in infrastructure improvements within these districts, serving as a catalyst for $90,946,850 in new assessed value.
Access To Capital
One of the many advantages to doing business in Concord is that it is home to a variety of financial institutions:
New Hampshire Business Finance Authority (BFA)
Created to foster economic development and create employment in New Hampshire. Working with the state’s banking, business, and economic development sectors, the BFA develops and implements programs which expand the availability of credit in the state, continually updating and expanding its programs to meet the changing needs of New Hampshire’s business community.
U.S Small Business Administration (SBA)
The SBA offers several small business loan guarantees and assistance programs in cooperation with local banks that may increase the availability and reduce the costs of business financing for new and expanding small businesses.
Community Loan Fund
Provides self-employed and small business entrepreneurs with loans, training and support resources to help businesses succeed.
Vested for Growth (VFG)
Established New Hampshire-based businesses can obtain capital in the form of royalty, or mezzanine, financing through VFG’s portfolio companies. These companies can also offer access to industry contacts, human resource development and other business resources.
NH Small Business Development Center (SBDC)
The New Hampshire Small Business Development Center is the key link to business assistance in NH and to programs offered through the university system, the State of New Hampshire, the U.S. Small Business Administration and the private sector. The SBDC offers free, one-on-one, confidential business counseling, low cost training programs, and access to information and referral services. Specialized services include environmental counseling, manufacturing assistance, and innovative economic development initiatives.
NH International Trade Resource Center
The New Hampshire International Trade Resource Center's unique alliance of state, federal and private sector organizations - all conveniently housed in one single location - offers a full spectrum of information, programs and customized services. The Trade Center also offers an extensive international business library, the statewide hub of the International Trade Data Network, a worldwide network of Commercial Consuls, a European-based logistics center and overseas virtual offices
Capital Regional Development Council (CRDC)
CRDC is a non-profit economic development corporation offering a variety of economic development and business financing services. CRDC is an organization that partners with municipalities, bank, state agencies, other non-profits, and businesses in order to facilitate job creation and tax base-improving projects. Its mission is: to promote, support, and facilitate economic development by fostering the creation and retention of permanent quality jobs, enhancement in wages, and property tax base expansion; and to actively pursue these goals, consistent with the continued stability of the organization. The organization focuses on two core delivery areas: financing businesses and real estate development.