Incentives

The Town of Smyrna wants to make it easy for businesses to locate, expand or remain here.  Here is a list of the current incentives.

  • Chapter 70 – Utilities
    Article IV – Discount of Electric Utility Charges for Qualifying Projects
    Sec. 70-190
    The monthly metered electric utility charge shall be discounted 50% for a period of six months.

  • Chapter 32 – Impact Fees
    Sec. 32-2. Waiver of Impact Fees for Qualifying Projects
    The impact fees shall be fully waived, provided that the rehabilitation, renovation, reconstruction, restoration or replacement of the existing building structure is (1) similar in kind, use or intensity; and (2) does not cause a significant increase in “municipal and/or public services” as defined in Section 32-2, as reasonably defined by the town manager.

  • Chapter 18 – Building & Building Regulations
    Article I – In General
    Division 2. Cap on permit fees for qualifying projects – Sec. 18-29
    Qualifying projects in commercially-zoned areas or in the historic preservation overlay district are eligible for a cap on building permit fees. The maximum building permit fee shall be $40.00 for the first $1,000.00 of value and $11.00 per each additional $1,000.00 of value, not to exceed $1,129.00 regardless of the total cost of the project

  • Chapter 18 – Building & Building Regulations
    Article XII – Redevelopment Authority
    Division 4. Waiver of Town Taxes, Charges and Fees – Sec. 18-801
    The town council may waive, in whole or in part, by resolution, any tax, charge, fee, obligation and/or duty owed to the town if such waiver is necessary to effectuate the purposes and intent of this article. The waiver shall include, but is not limited to, fees property taxes, impact fees, building permit fees and the monthly metered electric utility charge (excluding any public utility tax, state and/or federal tax/surcharge, purchase power adjustment and/or transmission/distribution fees).

Technical Assistance – The Town has engaged the annual professional services and technical assistance of Retail Market Answers, LLC (RMA). RMA’s services are available to current and prospective investors in the following areas of focus:

  • Business Recruitment Assistance to Property Owner and Real Estate Brokerage – targeting specific business prospects for recruitment pursuant to the Town plan including:
    o Value added strategies that compliment economic and sense of place goals
    o Gathering market data
    o Researching/providing site selection criteria and contact information

  • Business Retention – providing one-on-one assistance to targeted businesses in an effort to stabilize or improve business performance, succession planning, sale and disposition of businesses or real estate assistance to retain categories of business (if not the current business operator/owner)
  • Business Expansion Assistance
  • One-on-One Business Owner Technical Assistance
    o Strategic business development planning
    o Developing financial projections for redevelopment and development projects
    o Small business plan development
    o Retail merchandising assessments
    o Product mix
    o Signage
    o Store-layout assistance
    o Debt restructuring
  • Loan Assistance – supporting access to capital needs (recommending providers and articulating the needs of the business in the context of the lenders requirements)
  • Site Selection Assistance – access to the Town’s inventory of available land and buildings through Smyrna’s work with organizations like the Kent County Chamber of Commerce, Smyrna Business Development Committee, Smyrna Downtown Renaissance Association, and the RSA
  • Grand Writing Assistance
  • Primary and Secondary Marketing Research
    o Market demographics
    o Gap Analysis
  • Marketing and Event Assistance
  • Business Outreach/Mixers/Meetings Assistance
  • Ongoing Implementation Assistance

Design and Code Review – The Town regularly engages in design and code review activities with prospective new businesses as a means of streamlining cost, scope of work, expediting the regulatory process and to demonstrate its practices that the Town genuinely supports new business growth and values their interest

Supports and Responsive Town Council Practices That Facilitate New Business– To attract and secure the commitment of new and compelling downtown businesses, Town Council is able to adapt town practices.  The most recent examples of this incentive include:

  • Council agreed to amend a Town Ordinance to allow a manufacturing use in the downtown, provided utility (water, sewer and electric) abatements (2013-14, Painted Stave Distillery)
  • Council agreed to convey Town owned property to a private party at a deeply discounted rate in an effort to transform a central part of downtown
  • Council agreed to undertake the purchase of a property and lease this property to a craft brewery (Warlock Brewing Company, opening 2015)

Guidance Assistance: Economic Development Committee and its sub-committees – In addition to the detailed description of the EDC mission, role and assistance in the District Plan Section of this application, the Outreach Sub-Committee provides the following incentive:

  • Business-to-Business Networking Opportunities – This service extends the “Mixer” concept to new levels that will include sponsoring and cultivating business-to-business activities (economic summits, seminars, etc.)

Guidance Assistance: Redevelopment Authority Resources (RDA) – The RDA is in the process of establishing a revolving loan fund, funded by the USDA RDLEG program. This fund will be used to foster and assist commercial and residential development, renewal, improvement of busineses and the creation of jobs. This fund would allow the Town of Smyrna to offer investors access to capital at more competitive rates than traditional lending institutions and provide opportunity for specific economically viable businesses to locate, expand or remain in the Town.  Loans are anticipated to fund the targeted categories of businesses in the following areas:

  • Vacancy Treatment Initiative – a financial incentive for property and business owners to mitigate the negative impact of vacancy
  • Façade Improvement Incentive – a means of stimulating new interest in addressing storefront conditions and elevating the visual appeal of the Downtown Development District (DDD)