Dept. of Commerce: Governor Outlines Proposal to Make Available $120 Million in Enterprise Development Zone Tax Credits

Tony Hozeny, Department of Commerce, 608/267-9661

Ethnie Groves, Office of the Governor, 608-261-2156

Tax Credits Help Businesses Retain and Create Jobs

GREEN BAY – Governor Jim Doyle today outlined his proposal to expand the Enterprise Development Zone Program, making available $120 million in existing tax credits to help create and retain jobs and investment in Wisconsin. The Governor made the announcement during a visit to Tufco Technologies, Inc., in Green Bay.

The Enterprise Development Zone program provides tax credits to businesses that expand or locate in designated economically distressed areas. Businesses earn tax credits for jobs they create or preserve, and must meet their projected job creation and investment levels in order to receive the tax credits.

“The Enterprise Development Zone Program has proved to be a valuable tool for promoting economic development,” Governor Doyle said. “Projects already underway have created more than 17,000 new jobs, retained more than 27,000 jobs and generated over $1.8 billion in private investment. By expanding the program and creating additional zones, we can put to work more than $120 million in tax credits already authorized for economic development projects.”

Through legislation passed in 1995, the Department of Commerce was granted the authority to designate 81 Enterprise Development Zones (EDZs) and allocate $243 million in tax credits. Ten zones were reserved for environmental remediation projects, and the department has either used or committed the remaining 71 EDZs. However, the department has allocated only $122.8 million of the originally authorized tax credits. The creation of additional EDZs requires legislative approval.

“I made it clear in my “Grow Wisconsin” economic development plan that I am committed to helping all businesses grow and prosper,” Governor Doyle said. “These tax credits will enable small and medium sized businesses remain competitive, and will help create good jobs in the areas that need them most.”

Tufco Technologies, Inc. provides converting services and packaging solutions such as disposable table covers, gift wrap, and disposable surface cleaning cloths for the home, baby, and medical care industries. It moved its headquarters to Green Bay in 1992, and currently employs 250.

In 2004, Gov. Doyle announced that Tufco Technologies, Inc. was investing $3.6 million in new equipment, and would receive a $161,600 Customized Labor Training grant to train 61 existing employees and 15 new employees on the equipment. The project leveraged $161,685 in additional private investment.