The Texas Enterprise Fund provides tax write-offs for companies that promise to increase investment and job growth in local communities. Until now, no Houston companies have taken advantage of the fund. But now the Deloitte accounting firm has pledged to grow its impact on the local economy. Houston Public Radio’s Laurie Johnson reports.
Deloitte will invest $61.4 million and 500 new jobs at their Houston office. In exchange, they’ll get a maximum of $1.25 million in state tax refunds.
The company is required to make this investment within five years.
Councilmember Ronald Green says he supports the development. But he’s uncertain about the long-term impact on the local economy.
“I’m just concerned that we get people to agree to things on the front end in order to get the tax incentives and they don’t come to fruition.”
Now if Deloitte doesn’t keep up it’s end of the deal, the state will recapture those tax refunds and any interest accrued. There are also penalties for the company.
Several councilmembers, including Peter Brown, felt lower-income neighborhoods should benefit from the state enterprise program.
“We need assurances that the next project, the next five are really going to be targeted to helping job creation, businesses and capital investment that are seeking opportunities, economic development opportunities they do not presently have.”
Deloitte’s expansion is confined to Midtown and Downtown. Houston is eligible for up to five more Texas Enterprise projects.
Laurie Johnson. Houston Public Radio News.