The Qualified Target Industry (QTI) Tax Refund is available to Florida communities for encouraging quality job growth in targeted, high value-added industries. Pre-approved applicants creating jobs in Florida receive refunds on the taxes they pay including corporate income, sales, ad valorem, and certain other taxes.

Eligible applicants pay an average annual wage that is at least 115 percent of the state, metropolitan statistical area (MSA), or the local average wage – a minimum average annual wage of $47,204 ($22.69 per hour) for Polk County. The amount of the refund is equal to $3,000 per new job created. An additional $1,000 “per job” bonus is available for businesses paying 150 percent of the local or statewide average annual wage ($61,571 for Polk County).

In order to participate, the company must apply to Enterprise Florida prior to making a decision to locate in Florida. The community must provide a resolution from the city or county commission recommending the applicant for the incentive, and commit to provide a local match equaling 20 percent of the total tax refund.



The Urban Job Tax Credit is an incentive for eligible businesses located in a designated urban area to create new jobs. The credit is $500 per qualified job and can be taken against either the Florida Corporate Income Tax or the Florida Sales and Use Tax.




Quick Response Training (QRT) offers partial reimbursement to relocating or expanding businesses for expenses related to training new or existing employees after jobs have been created or retained and the training has occurred.

This business-friendly program is flexible to respond quickly to corporate training objectives. If approved, the company provides a match of cash or in-kind contributions. The company chooses what training is needed, who provides it and how it is provided.


Incumbent Worker Training (IWT) provides training to currently employed workers to keep Florida’s workforce competitive in a global economy and to retain existing businesses.

The program is available to all Florida businesses that have been in operation for at least one year prior to application and require skills upgrade training for existing employees. All IWT funds are subject to availability of funding and contingent on training needs. Awards are made on a first come – first serve basis.



The Veterans Florida Business Training Grant is available to Florida businesses seeking to train and hire military veterans. The program helps businesses meet workforce demands in a competitive environment by facilitating access to training and education in high-demand fields for veterans through matching training grants up to $8,000 per veteran employee trained.



Florida companies may be able to receive local funding assistance for skills upgrade training for their employed workers. Employed Worker Training (EWT) Grant is a locally funded resource with guidelines established by each of Florida’s individual regional workforce board.

EWT may be used to meet many industry or company-specific training requirements. Businesses may become more competitive by providing their employees new skills that may lead to greater productivity. New skills for employees may also result in career advancement opportunities for the individual.


Tax Abatement

Polk Co. E.D. Ad Valorem Tax Exemption

The Polk County Economic Development Ad Valorem Tax Exemption (“Exemption”) is an exemption of taxes to encourage quality job growth in targeted high-value added businesses.

The program was implemented to support economic growth and enhance the county’s ability to be competitive. The exemption was designed to encourage new business development and retain local business with planned expansions.


Bonus Incentive Program

In an effort to augment the State QTI program and establish a competitive posture both statewide and nationally, Polk County offers the following Polk County Bonus Incentive Program (PCBI) grant in addition to the State QTI incentive.

The original intent of the grant is to help to offset the new road impact fees and to provide a more competitive posture for Polk County when competing on close deals.

This incentive is based on a like calculation of the average private sector wage as used in the State QTI program, and adds an incremental capital investment requirement to determine the number of jobs eligible for the PCBI incentive.


Impact Fee Mitigation


The Economic Development Impact Fee Mitigation (EDIFM) is a reduction of impact fees to encourage quality job growth in targeted high value added businesses. The EDIFM was designed to encourage Build to Suit and Speculative Building Development.



The Economic Development Impact Fee Mitigation (EDIFM) is a reduction of impact fees to encourage quality job growth in targeted high value added businesses.  The EDIFM was designed to encourage new and existing industry expansions.

You must be a Qualified Targeted Industry, creating 10 new jobs minimum. The mitigation amount increases based on average wage and total capital investment.



The Foreign Trade Zone (FTZ) was created to enhance U.S. production and job opportunities by allowing companies to defer, reduce and/or eliminate placement of U.S. Customs duties depending on the range of activities to be conducted in the zone. Simplify and reduce the cost of formal custom entry procedures.

The zone expedites the movement of goods to and from zone sites. Additional benefits may apply to goods subject to federal excise tax and imported production equipment for use in the zone. Lakeland/Polk companies are in the service area of FTZ 79. Qualified companies can obtain FTZ designation by applying to the U.S. Foreign Trade Zones Board for usage driven site designation. The Grantee of FTZ 79 is the City of Tampa. 


Revenue bonds

Industrial Revenue Bonds (IRB) are tax free, below-market rate, long term financing of fixed assets for qualified manufacturers and 501c3 non-profits. IRB’s are issued by the Polk County Industrial Development Authority on behalf of private companies to finance land, buildings and equipment. IRB’s can not be used for inventory or working capital. Bonds are issued from $1 million to $10 million.


Lakeland Electric ED RIDER

The Lakeland Electric ED Rider Program is available for load associated with initial service to new General Service Customers or the expansion of existing General Service Customers and taking service under one of the following rate schedules: GSD, GSX-2, GSLD, GSX-3, ELDC, or ELDCX-1.

General Service Customers who desire service under Rider EDR must enter into a Service Agreement with Lakeland Electric. The New Load applicable under this Rider must be a minimum of 350 kW at a single delivery point. To qualify for service under this Rider, the General Service Customer must employ an additional work force of at least 25 full-time employees per 350 kW of New Load and comply with all provisions in the Service Agreement.

The load and employment requirements under the Rider must be achieved at the same delivery point. The General Service Customer shall be responsible for Facilities Charges for additional metering equipment that may be required to qualify for this Rider.

CRA Incentives

The City of Lakeland Community Redevelopment Agency works with businesses, developers, and property owners in specific geographic locations to improve the quality of life for residents. Learn more about the area and incentives below: 




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