New business incentive programs proposed to Galesburg Council

Representatives of the Knox County Area Partnership for Economic Development met with Galesburg Aldermen Monday night detailing some ways to overcome local businesses’ obstacles to growth. KCAP President Ken Springer proposed, after collaborating with city administration, four new potential incentive programs that could help businesses expand.

The first focuses on wage growth.

It works in some ways like it’s predecessor, the CDAP Revolving Loan Fund.

But whereas CDAP would finance a loan for a flat $15,000 per job created, this new system is tied to the area’s per capita wage.

For a business to qualify the jobs they create have to be at least 125 percent of this area’s per capita wage.

That means any job creation financed through the city in this program would have to be a $31,250 a year job, with that number in theory increasing as local wages grow.

Retail and restaurants would not qualify except for those in downtown because these businesses are the “heart of downtown.”

Then there’s the Major Incentive Program that essentially work the way city grants for Midstate and Pegasus Manufacturing this past year.

Large employers looking to expand can qualify for up to $200,000 based on $2,000 per full-time job, but they must be creating at least 50 jobs and making a capital investment of at least $1 million.

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