TAVARES – With economic and job development taking center stage across the country, the Lake County Office of Economic Development and Tourism is doing its part to boost local business growth.
In an effort to facilitate economic growth and development, the County offers a number of business incentive programs. Some of the more popular Lake County-sponsored business incentive programs are:
• Review Appropriate to Priority in Development (RAPID): Offers expedited plan reviews and inspections affecting the construction of a facility in a time frame that meets the goals/deadlines of the applicant’s organization.
• Business Assistance Program (BAP): Provides matching funds to new and expanding business to offset development costs (building permit fees, impact fees and/or infrastructure improvement costs).
• High Value Job Creation Program (HVJCP): Provides a cash award for the creation of jobs paying a minimum of 115% of the County’s average annual wage (AAW).
• Artist Relocation Program (ARP): To encourage arts and culture in downtown art districts, this program provides matching funds to new or relocating art businesses to offset building improvement costs.
As an example of the impact Lake County’s incentives programs can have on small business, First Green Bank, a traditional community bank based in Mount Dora with a focus on positive environmental and social responsibility, received a High Value Job Creation incentive from the County in 2009 soon after opening its doors. Since 2009, First Green Bank has experienced tremendous growth, having now created over 40 jobs within the County and posting 22 straight months of profitability.
“When the County invests in local businesses, it pays off with the growth of the business and ultimately the creation of jobs for Lake County residents,” said Scott Blankenship, Director of Lake County’s Office of Economic Development & Tourism. “The incentive programs we offer make doing business in Lake County easier and more attractive.”
For more information about the business incentive programs and detailed descriptions of what they offer, call the Lake County Office of Economic Development and Tourism at 352-742-3918.