SS/SCS/SB's 1234 & 1270 - This act creates a new type of project under the enhanced enterprise zone tax benefit act known as mega-projects. A taxpayer who establishes a mega-project within an enhanced enterprise zone will be allowed an income tax credit equal to a percentage of the taxpayer's new annual payroll for employees located at the project. In order to be approved as a mega-project, the new capitol investment must be projected to exceed three hundred million dollars and the project must be projected to create at least one thousand new jobs over a period of eight years. The new jobs created must have an average wage in excess of the county average wage and the taxpayer must offer health insurance to all new jobs and pay at least half of the premiums for such insurance. The taxpayer must provide an acceptable plan for repayment of tax credits received. Prior to final approval of a mega-project, the department and the taxpayer must enter into a binding contract which: sets out the taxpayer's repayment plan; obligates the taxpayer to construct the facility; and provides specific internal rates of return.
The Department of Economic Development is prohibited from approving any mega-projects after December 31, 2008, and from issuing any tax credits prior to July 1, 2010. The Department of Economic Development is prohibited from issuing more than forty million dollars in tax credits for all mega-projects annually. A taxpayer who receives approval for a mega-project may receive tax credits for up to twenty-two years to be used to offset income tax liabilities. No taxpayer may receive more than forty million dollars in mega-project tax credits annually. Any taxpayer who receives mega-project tax credits must provide an annual report to the department of economic development containing the number of new jobs at the project site and the new annual payroll. A taxpayer who has been approved for issuance of mega-project tax credits will not receive tax credits in any year in which such taxpayer fails to meet eligibility requirements.