- Economic Development
- Innovative Incentive Programs
Innovative Incentive Programs
The City of Hanford is a business friendly community. Business incentive programs are obtainable through City, county and state sources. These incentives are for use by Hanford's existing businesses and for use by new businesses looking to locate in the City of Hanford.
City of Hanford Incentives
The City of Hanford has been extremely successful working with businesses and streamlining the development process. In addition, we will expedite any development in the Enterprise Zone and Redevelopment Area by holding special meetings as necessary to discuss the project to assure development progresses smoothly.
Development Fee Payment Deferral Program
The City offers a 3-year payment deferral for development impact fees. The interest rate is currently 3%. This requires meeting specific guidelines and requires City Council approval.
Downtown Business Incentives:
New and existing businesses can take advantage of the downtown business incentives:
- No additional parking requirements for businesses at existing buildings.
- Three parking options for new construction and additions to existing buildings. These include installing parking on-site as required by the zoning ordinance, paying the current in-lieu fee per space, or a combination of the two.
- Public sidewalk enhancements and improvements provided by the city when required by the development review process.
- Traffic impact fee for new construction and additions reduced by 20%.
- No traffic impact fee required for reuse of existing buildings that do not increase traffic over the previous use
Recycling Market Development Zone (RMDZ)
This designation allows businesses to obtain loans at below market rated from the California Integrated Waste Management Board if they reduce their waste to the landfill or utilize a recycled material in the manufacturing process. The loans extend up to $2 million, or a maximum of 75% of the total project cost. The term is 10 to 15 years and the interest rate is around 4.25%.
A variety of training programs is available to assist the business. Within the city, local and state programs can assist with job referral, placement and training. The Kings County Workforce Development Board is the single point of contact for job creation, referral, placement and training. It includes the Kings County Job Training Office, Employment Development Department, and the marketing arm of Kings County Economic Development Corporation. These programs can be combined and overlapped to maximize training benefits.
Kings County Job Training Office (JTO)
JTO provides assistance to employers with several programs: Vocational Counseling and Assessment, Vocational Training, On-the-Job Training, Screening for Enterprise Zone and other tax credits, and Coordination of Services for other Employment and Training Providers. For example, the On-the Job Training program, which can be combined with the Enterprise Zone Hiring Credit provides a 50% reimbursement for each employee's hourly wage during the training period. For a 60-day training program for 10 employees at $7.50/hour, an estimated $18,000 direct reimbursement would be available to the business.
Employment Development Department (EDD)
EDD works with the business to access the state's entire workforce or coordinate recruitment activities with JTO, Proteus or KingsWorks. EDD works with the business to focus recruitment and placement of pre-qualified workers to match the business' requirements and maximize available tax credits. The Job Match system provides employers with quick access to the largest available pool of job ready applicants.
Other Local Agencies
Other local agencies such as KingsWorks and Proteus have programs to assist employers in hiring and training potential employees. KingsWorks is a program that provides recipients of cash assistance with job search, training, education and support. Wage subsidies are available to employers of up to 50% of the wages paid to a KingsWorks referred employee during an on-the-job training program. GAIN also provides recruitment, screening and referral services to all employers. For a 30-day training period for 10 employees at $7.50/hour, the business would realize a subsidy of approximately $9,600.
The College of the Sequoias offers several standard training programs for employees and will customize training programs to meet the specific needs of the employer. The College of the Sequoias recently completed construction of a Vocational Training Center.
A variety of financing programs are available through Kings County Economic Development Corporation. Kings County Economic Development Corporation can package loans of all sizes including SBA 504 and 7A loans. The State gives top priority to loans made in the Enterprise Zone.
Façade Improvement Grants
Main Street Hanford offers matching façade improvement grants for businesses in the downtown.
State of California Incentives
California has made a concerted effort to encourage new investment and reduce the cost of starting and operating a business through the creation of various incentives and programs available to businesses operating in the state. See California Governor's Office of Business and Economic Development website.
Research and Development Tax Credits
Designed to encourage companies to increase their basic research and development activities in California, the research and development tax credit allows companies to receive a 15% credit against their corporation's tax liability for qualified in-house research expenses and a 24% credit for basic research payments to an outside organization. This is the highest Research and Development tax credit in the nation. To qualify, the research must be conducted within California and must not include research for the purpose of improving a commercial product for style, taste, cosmetic, or seasonal design factors.
Small Business Development Center
The local Small Business Development Center in Visalia can provide technical expertise and marketing and counseling support. The Small Business Loan Program helps companies secure low-interest loan guarantees up to $350,000.
Foreign Trade Zone
Kings County is part of the Central San Joaquin Valley Foreign Trade Zone (FTZ), which allows businesses to increase cash flow and lessen the cost of doing business internationally. Manufacturers that import and export products may eliminate, reduce, or defer the duty payments that they pay on those items.
California Employment Training Panel (ETP)
This state program assists businesses in acquiring and retaining a highly skilled work force with expertise in very specific fields in order to increase competitiveness and productivity. The company must produce products or services sold out-of-state, or have in-state sales, which compete with products sold out-of-state, and meet the wage requirements. ETP will enter into a performance-based contract that will include a customized training curriculum, for new or existing employees, that is performed by either an approved training agency or the company itself. As the training is completed, the costs for developing, implementing, and completing the training are reimbursed. ETP reimburses employers $26 per training hour for employee training. Reimbursed training can range from 8 to 100 hours for most employers. The average reimbursement per employee is roughly $1,200, and is dependent on the number of hours in training. For 10 employees trained, this can total up to $20,000.
Industrial Development Revenue Bonds
The California Infrastructure and Economic Development Bank offers Industrial Development Revenue Bonds to manufacturers. These low interest rate, tax-exempt bonds can be used to finance manufacturing or processing facilities and/or equipment. There is a $20 million cap.
SBA's HUBZone (Historically Underutilized Business Zone) assists small businesses gain preferential access to federal procurement opportunities. Preferences go to businesses that obtain HUBZone certification by employing staff that live in the HUBZone and by being located in the HUBZone. See HUBZone program website.