Tax Phase-ins (Abatement) Program
Tax phase-ins are available for new buildings and substantial improvements to existing buildings. In the case of substantial improvements to existing buildings, only the value of the improvement is eligible for the tax phase-in. Real property may qualify for a 3-year, 5-year, 7-year or 10-year phase-in, depending on the amount of qualifying investment, total number of jobs (created and retained), benefits package, and targeted industry. Tax phase-ins are generally higher in the first few years, then taper off in later years (see schedule below).
Tax phase-ins are available for manufacturing, logistical, distribution and information technology equipment. Personal property may qualify for a 3-year or 5-year phase-in, depending on the amount of the qualifying investment, total number of jobs (created and retained), benefits package, and targeted industry. Tax phase-ins are generally higher in the first few years, then taper off in later years (see schedule below).
Façade Restoration Program
The City of Elkhart, through its Community Development Block Grant (CDBG) program, can provide up to 50% of eligible costs (maximum award $20,000) for exterior rehabilitation of commercial/retail buildings located within the Downtown Commercial Historic District.
Riverfront Development District
In 2017, the City of Elkhart expanded the Riverfront Development District, which allows eligible dining, entertainment and cultural establishments within the district to obtain a three-way license (beer, wine and liquor) for $1,000.
Aurora Capital Loan Fund
The Aurora Capital Loan Fund can be used to finance the rehabilitation and construction of commercial real estate in downtown Elkhart. The objective of the loan pool will be to stimulate physical improvements to small businesses in downtown Elkhart.
Downtown Elkhart offers historic storefronts and fashionable interiors to locate unique shops, professional offices, eateries and more. DEI partners with local commercial real-estate brokers to provide current information about available properties within the Gateway Mile corridor.
Available Redevelopment Properties
The City of Elkhart has a number of commercial and industrial properties available to interested buyers for redevelopment. Staff can assist interested buyers with navigating the City processes, including submitting a proposal to the Redevelopment Commission and obtaining necessary Planning/Zoning approvals.
Elkhart Urban Enterprise Association
Job Readiness and Employer Engagement Services
The Elkhart Urban Enterprise Association has contracted with Goodwill Industries of Michiana to provide job readiness training and employer engagement services to businesses and residents within the Elkhart Urban Enterprise Zone. Residents within the Zone can receive free job training and placement services at businesses within the Zone. Employers within the Zone can utilize Goodwill for pre-employment job training.
Credits and Deductions
There are four state tax incentives and one local property tax incentive available to businesses located within an Urban Enterprise Zone. The state income tax incentives include:
The employee tax deduction;
The employment expense credit;
The loan interest credit; and
The investment cost credit.