Champaign tax incentives for jobs remain in place

Officials in Champaign County recently voted to continue incentives for several local companies that have met investment and job creation goals.

Champaign County’s Tax Incentive Review Committee recently made recommendations to Urbana City Council and Champaign County commissioners to continue with the incentives.

TIRC members voted to continue all enterprise zone agreements and community reinvestment area agreements on this year’s list, said Marcia Bailey, economic development coordinator for the Champaign Economic Partnership.

An enterprise zone agreement for Parker Trutec also expired at the end of last year. The manufacturing firm met its commitment to retain close to 90 jobs and create at least two new positions, Bailey said.

The TIRC meets annually to review agreements between local companies that have qualified for the incentives in both Urbana and Champaign County. The TIRC’s job is to make sure companies are fulfilling their obligations under the agreement.

Bailey cited Parker Trutec’s recently completed expansion as an example of how the incentives can help area companies grow under the right conditions. The company has received a 45 percent reduction in real property taxes as part of a 10-year enterprise zone agreement that expired at the end of last year. In return, the company committed to retaining at least 88 jobs and creating two new positions, which the company met.

But the Honda supplier also recently finished a roughly $8 million expansion to add a third line to its Urbana facility, she said. The company did not need to apply for an abatement for that expansion.

“They’re going to go ahead and do the investment with no strings attached,” Bailey said.

Under the agreement, Parker Trutec’s abatement amounted to $289,830, she said. But the company paid $356,234 in taxes and invested about $2.1 million over that period.

The TIRC committee also recommended continuing incentives for several other companies. KTH Parts Industries Inc., in St. Paris, will continue with a 100 percent abatement over 10 years and has exceeded its pledge to retain 92 employees.

Several other companies — including Ultra-Met Co., White’s Service Center, American Pan Co. and property owner Gerald Shiffer — have also met or exceeded their commitment to create or retain jobs under the agreements, and the TIRC recommended their incentives continue, Bailey said.

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