The Office of Economic Development is here to help make your business plans a reality. Our experienced staff can help you take advantage of city and state incentive programs and guide you through the process of finding loans, grants, investments, or other sources of funding.
Property Tax Assessment Deferral Program
When a property is rehabilitated or improved by new construction, the assessed value may increase because of the investments made in the property. In order to encourage the fullest development of property, the City offers two Property Tax Assessment Deferral Programs that freeze the property tax assessments on certain eligible properties at pre-construction or pre-rehabilitation values. Taxes assessed on the improvements are phased in over a period of five or seven years. You can find the application here. For more information, contact Clay Williams at 203-946-7093 or at email@example.com.
Façade Improvement Grant Program
New Haven’s Façade Improvement Grant Program supports façade improvements to commercial and mixed-use properties that benefits the business(es) occupying the property as well as the community at large. Approved applicants can receive a reimbursement grant of up to 50% of the total pre-tax façade construction cost up to a maximum of $30,000 per façade. An additional reimbursement grant of up to $1,500 may be available to support facade-related architectural/design costs. For more information, contact Clay Williams at 203-946-7093 or at firstname.lastname@example.org
Enterprise Zone and Urban Jobs Program
Connecticut’s Enterprise Zone and Urban Jobs Programs provide property tax exemptions and corporation business tax credits for the expansion, renovation, construction, or acquisition of facilities in distressed municipalities. Benefits include abatement of 80% of assessed valuation of a newly constructed or acquired facility for five years, abatement of 80% of assessed value added to the Grand List of machinery and equipment for five years, and tax credit on 25% to 50% of the portion of the corporation business tax allocable to the improvement for ten years. For more information, click here. For assistance applying, contact Helen Rosenberg at 203-946-5889 or at email@example.com.
The State also offers many targeted, more specific tax incentives relating to manufacturing, industrial reinvestment, film production and media, research development, financial services, angel investing, and more. A full list can be found here.
Alternative Debt Financing and Grants
Business debt capital is plentiful and available for businesses that may seek alternatives to a traditional bank loan:
- The Community Investment Corporation (CIC) is a small business lender that provides SBA 504 loans for major assets and real estate, community advantage loans (up to $250,000) for underserved communities and start-ups, and microloans for borrowers with few assets.
- The Community Economic Development Fund (CEDF) is a non-profit that provides loans and assistance in low-to-moderate income towns and cities in Connecticut. They provide term loans and lines of credit (up to $250,000), commercial real estate loans (up to $500,000), and microloans (up to $50,000). CEDF pairs their loans with advisors and educational resources and also offers a Women and Minority Loan Guarantee Program.
- The Connecticut Center for Advanced Technology (CCAT) runs the Connecticut Manufacturing Voucher Program, which provides vouchers worth up to $50,000 to help businesses keep pace with state-of-the-art technological advancements.
- Connecticut Innovations (CI) has several grants and loans available to help small businesses innovate. Perfect for growing IT, Biotech and high-tech businesses.
- The Connecticut New Venture Competition runs a business plan competition for college students that provides $20,000 in start-up support services and cash grants.
- CTNext, as Connecticut’s innovation ecosystem, supports companies and entrepreneurs with guidance, resources, networks, and funding. Their grants include the Entrepreneur’s Learners Permit (up to $1,500 reimbursement), Entrepreneur Innovation Awards (up to $10,000), Growth Company Grants (up to $25,000), and the Technology Talent Bridge (funding to hire student interns, up to $25,000). In addition, CTNext can help you apply for federal SBIR/STTR grants.
- HEDCO offers small business and non-profit organizations in Connecticut flexible and affordable loan options with terms from 1 to 10 years, interest rates from 4% to 7%, and amounts up to $400,000. Additionally, HEDCO’s Business Resource Center provides technical assistance from their business counselors, attorneys, accountants, and insurance and banking professionals.
For some start-up ventures, debt financing may not be a viable option because the business is young or lacks stable revenue. When debt is not an option, explore equity from:
- The Angel Investor Forum invests in promising opportunities whose potential rewards are commensurate with recognized risks. The organization provides $100,000 to $2 million in capital to companies that offer a high return potential to investors.
- Connecticut Innovations (CI) invests in Connecticut’s promising high tech companies. CI invests up to $1.5 million per round and up to a maximum of $7 million in a single company. After investing, CI provides advice, support, and introductions to their networks of mentors and investors.
- Crossroads Venture Group (CVG) is a professional organization that serves the investment community by bringing investors together with start-ups and growth-stage companies in Connecticut. CVG hosts monthly networking and pitch events and provides resources for entrepreneurs and innovators.
- Elm Street Ventures is a seed and early stage venture fund based in New Haven, Connecticut and funded predominantly by Yale University. Elm Street Ventures focuses on the life sciences, but also invests in software, materials, sustainable technology, and other industries.
- The National Venture Capital Association is comprised of more than 450 member firms, and is the premier trade association representing the U.S. venture capital industry.
- The Small Business Investment Company is dedicated to improving and stimulating the national economy and small businesses by stimulating and supplementing the flow of private equity capital and long term loan funds.