Business & Occupation Tax Credits
An ordinance of the Council of the City of Fairmont enacted, in part, pursuant to the provisions of West Virginia code §8-1-5a Municipal Home Rule Pilot Program, and the City of Fairmont’s Home Rule Plan approved October 6, 2014, to provide relief from the provisions of West Virginia code §8-13-5 which limit the City of Fairmont’s authority to offer tax credits from its Business and Occupation Tax to business expansion credits and to provide authority for expanded and additional tax credits from said tax to promote the re-occupation of vacant or dilapidated structures throughout the city, to foster the rehabilitation and preservation of contributing structures in the city’s downtown historic district; and to encourage longevity of business operation in the corporate limits by providing an anniversary credit.
Historic District Tax Credits
In order to encourage rehabilitation and preservation of contributing historic structures in the City’s Downtown Historic District, City Council passed an ordinance allowing for a NEW B&O tax credit for cost of improvements made by a taxpayer relating to the rehabilitation and preservation of a contributing structure. The cost of any rehabilitation or preservation work on a contributing structure can result in the cost amount being received in tax credits, after required information is provided to the City of Fairmont. The amount of your B&O tax credit cannot exceed the total Cost of Improvement or tax liability.
Opportunity zones were created as a means to offer tax relief in exchange for investment in low-income areas, thus theoretically increasing economic growth and interest in the area. The zones are determined by low-income census tracts. Once designated an opportunity zone, the incentives include a temporary tax deferral for all capital gains that are reinvested into an Opportunity Fund, a step-up in basis (readjustment of the value) for all capital gains reinvested into an Opportunity Fund, and a permanent exclusion from taxable income of all capital gains made from the exchange or sale of any investment in a qualified Opportunity Zone Funds after the investment has been held for a 10-year period. As of 2018, two Fairmont locations have been designated as Opportunity Zones; the Downtown City Center District and the Speedway Avenue District.
Tax Increment Financing, or TIF, is a tool that state lawmakers gave local governments to help communities restore their most run-down areas or jumpstart economically sluggish parts of town. With this tool, financially strapped municipalities can make the improvements they need, like new roads or new sewers, eliminate blighted buildings, and provide incentives to attract businesses or to help existing businesses expand without tapping into general funds or raising taxes. Click here for more information on Tax Increment Financing.
Development Review Committee (DRC)
DRC, also known as Development Review Committee, offer individuals aspiring to develop within city limits an opportunity to obtain preliminary feedback and comments from the various departments within the city such as Planning, Fire, Utilities, Water, Code Enforcement, and the City Manager. Each applicant will be fiven 30 to 40 minutes for discussion. This includes a 15 to 20 minute presentation and an additional 15 to 20 minutes for questions and comments from the DRC. An intial DRC is free of charge.