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Tax Incentives for Moving into Blighted Areas

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By Stephanie Rabiner, Esq. on May 04, 2011 6:43 AM

One of the bigger stories out of San Francisco of late is Twitter's planned move into the Tenderloin--a blighted area riddled with shuttered restaurants, graffiti, and crumbling facades.

Considering a move into the suburbs, Twitter managed to brokerage a deal with the city wherein it promised to move into the Tenderloin if the city would provide tax breaks.

While the majority of the debate in San Francisco was about gentrification, the fact of the matter is that sometimes, if it cleans up an area and increases safety, gentrification is a good thing.

It can also be good for business.

Twitter is a large company with a decent amount of pull, but that doesn't mean that you can't benefit from moving into a blighted area as well.

Cities and states across the country are trying to figure out how to increase economic development in areas that have been hit hard, and many of them are turning to tax incentives.

Some states, such as Missouri, have programs in place, while others leave it up to cities and counties to offer local tax abatements. There are credits for income and employee taxes, equipment purchases, and even insurance.

If you think that you might be willing to move your business into a blighted area, get in contact with your state and local redevelopment agencies.

And if there aren't any programs, it doesn't hurt to negotiate. Twitter did, and it netted the company a five year reprieve on city employee taxes.

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