garrett

CUMBERLAND — The Maryland Department of Commerce has designated a new Enterprise Zone in Garrett County to include the Keyser’s Ridge Business Park and redesignated the U.S. Route 220 South Enterprise Zone in Allegany County.

A joint effort between state and local governments, the Enterprise Zone program provides real property and state income tax credits for businesses that create jobs and make capital investments.

“Our Enterprise Zone program is one of the best tools commerce offers to help our local partners bring growth, new jobs and increased prosperity to their regions,” said Commerce Secretary Kelly M. Schulz. “The requests for new designations, redesignations and expansions of these zones show how effectively the program supports the revitalization of many local jurisdictions.”

The new Garrett County zone includes about 122 useable acres, including the county-owned business park. The zone is located in a federal opportunity zone and includes another 140 acres that are considered unusable due to topography.

Garrett County has invested in several infrastructure improvements around the business park area, and the business park designation will be an important, additional tool to attract businesses, officials said.

“We are grateful to the Maryland Department of Commerce for designating the Keyser’s Ridge Business Park as an Enterprise Zone,” said Kim Durst, economic development specialist with the county’s Department of Economic Development. “Together with other available incentives and Garrett County’s central location to major markets, the Enterprise Zone designation will be an additional tool in our efforts to recruit, retain and attract businesses.” 

The redesignated zone in Allegany County includes 404 acres south of Bel Air, an area that includes the Barton Business Park. The continued Enterprise Zone incentives will help the county attract more businesses, particularly in light industrial sectors such as advanced manufacturing.

“The Barton Business Park is one of many locations within Allegany County primed for growth and development,” said Allegany County Administrator Brandon Butler. “The redesignation of the Enterprise Zone, and more importantly the county’s fantastic working relationship with the Maryland Department of Commerce, are just two of the many reasons why businesses are finding their home in Allegany.”

Businesses located in the state’s 38 Enterprise Zones will receive $52 million in property tax credits in fiscal year 2020 based on more than $3.7 billion in investments made in FY 2019.

Commerce approves the state’s Enterprise Zones, while local governments are responsible for their administration. Businesses operating within an Enterprise Zone may be eligible for a tax credit toward their state income tax filings based upon the number of new jobs created, and a tax credit on their local real property taxes based upon their overall capital investment into a property.

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