Funding and Incentives

State and Local Funding Sources:

Ohio Department of Development:

The Ohio Department of Development offers a range of tax credits, incentives and loans for businesses that create jobs and strengthen the local economy. Athens County takes full advantage of these resources to help our businesses grow and thrive. They include:

Transformational Mixed-Use Development Program

The Transformational Mixed-Use Development Program provides a tax credit against Development costs incurred during the construction of a project that will be a catalyst for future development in its area. A Development includes new construction and/or improvement of vacant buildings that will have a major economic impact on the site and the surrounding area. This Development must be a combination of retail, office, residential, recreation, structured parking, and other similar uses into one mixed-use Development.

Invest Ohio Project

InvestOhio is a tax incentive program benefiting small businesses and investors in the state of Ohio. The program encourages investors to directly support small business ventures by providing the small business with cash or equity by offering tax credits to the investors. The program is administered by the Ohio Development Services Agency and the Ohio Department of Taxation. Visit the link above to learn more.

New Market Tax Credits

The Ohio New Market Tax Credit Program provides investors incentives to fund businesses in low-income communities by awarding tax credit allocation authority to the economic or community development entity serving as the project intermediary (Investors gives 39% of investment claimed over 7 years).

Ohio Enterprise Zone Program

The Ohio Enterprise Zone Program is an economic development tool that provides tax abatements on a portion of the value of new real and personal property for businesses making investment in Ohio that in conjunction with job creation.

Local Job Creation Tax Credits

The Local JCTC is a payroll tax incentive that reduces business tax obligations for companies that commit to job creation and a certain payroll threshold in the form of refundable tax credits.

Regional 166 Direct Loan

Regional 166 Direct Loan Program (Regional 166 Direct Loan) promotes economic development, business expansion and job creation by providing financial assistance for allowable costs of eligible projects in the State of Ohio. This program provides low-interest loans to businesses creating new jobs or preserving existing employment opportunities in the state. Application collection and review, along with initial program approvals are handled by certified local economic development agencies.

Roadwork Development (629) Funds

Roadwork Development (629) funds are available for public roadway improvements, including engineering and design costs. Funds are available for projects primarily involving manufacturing, research and development, high technology, corporate headquarters, and distribution activity. Projects must create or retain jobs. Grants are reimbursable and provided to a local jurisdiction and require local participation.

Historic Preservation Tax Credit

The HPTC provides a tax credit to owners and long-term lessees of historically designated buildings who undertake a rehabilitation project in order to leverage the private redevelopment of historic buildings.

Community Reinvestment Areas

CRAs are areas of land in which property owners can receive tax incentives for investing in real property improvements. The program is administered by municipal and county government and provides real property tax exemptions for property owners who renovate existing or construct new buildings.

Tax Increment Financing

An economic development tool that incentivizes redevelopment through a tax abatement on the increased assessed property value due to improvements. This captured tax can then be reinvested in the district for infrastructure improvements.

Downtown Redevelopment Districts

DRDs are similar to the TIF, but more flexible in how service payments can be spent within the district for economic development purposes.

Ohio Statewide Development Corporation 504 Loan Program

OSDC is a private, non-profit corporation that offers the 504 loan program, which provides funding for up to 40% of the total cost of commercial real estate and equipment for longer loan terms at fixed, below-market interest rates.


ACEDC Revolving Loan Funds:

The ACEDC offers three different RLF programs that provide minimum gap financing to compliment conventional methods of financing. Each RLF aims to grow the Athens economy by helping new or existing companies finance expansion and growth projects. Learn more about eligible projects and requirements on our Revolving Loan Funds page.

Athens City and County RLFs

The City of Athens and Athens County Revolving Loan Funds provide minimum “gap” financing of the portion of the project required to complement conventional financing resources. These funding sources will provide only the amount necessary, in the form of a loan at favorable rates and fixed terms, to induce other financial institutions to complete the financing package.

Small Business Micro RLF

The Micro Revolving Loan Fund that provides funding in the form of small loan amounts ranging from $10,000-$50,000 at favorable rates and fixed terms to assist rural business development in Athens County.


JobsOhio Incentive Programs:

Ohio’s state economic development entity, JobsOhio, offers a full range of benefits for businesses looking to grow and expand in Ohio, including loans, grants and tax abatements. The ACEDC will help your company maneuver the JobsOhio program database, and help you determine which programs are most appropriate for your company’s needs. For additional information on each of these JobsOhio programs, visit


JobsOhio Inclusion Grant

The JobsOhio Inclusion Grant exists to provide financial support for eligible projects in designated distressed communities and/or for businesses owned by underrepresented populations across the state. Learn more at the JobsOhio website:


JobsOhio Grants

  • Growth Fund
  • Economic Development Grant
  • Revitalization Program
  • Inclusion Program
  • Research & Development Grant
  • Pilot Program

JobsOhio Loans

  • Research and Development Investment Loan Fund
  • Ohio Enterprise Bond Fund
  • Innovation Ohio Loan Fund
  • Roadwork Development

JobsOhio Tax Credits

  • State Job Creation Tax Credit
  • DataCenter Tax Abatement



Other Funding Organizations:

The ACEDC always makes a point to communicate closely with  local, state and regional partner agencies to secure funding for viable economic development projects that promote economic development, business expansion, and job creation. Entities we work closely with to craft funding packages include:


Why Ohio?

Ohio offers a business environment that attracts global investment and fosters growth. Ohio’s simplified tax structure, central location and affordable cost of doing business are catalysts for past and future economic diversification and prosperity. JobsOhio is the state’s economic development entity and offers several grants, loans and tax incentives that support business growth, workforce and talent, innovation, and critical infrastructure.


We’ve eliminated corporate profit and franchise taxes. Zero tax on corporate profit means reduced operating costs and enhanced profit margins for your business.


We want your profits to soar, so when you invest in greater productivity, your business will have zero tax liability surrounding that investment.


Operating costs can drop significantly as a result of Ohio’s inventory tax policy. If your business holds inventory in Ohio, it’s completely tax free.


Ohio doesn’t impose a tax on goods or services sold outside of our state. If you ship 100% of your product outside of Ohio, your Commercial Activities Tax (CAT) is zero.


Entrepreneurs will love this: Your first $1 million in gross receipts can be tax-free in Ohio.


Simply pay the flat CAT corresponding to your taxable gross receipts; flat tax amounts increase at each level of $150,000, $1 million, $2 million, or more.


Why Athens County:

Athens County is uniquely poised to offer lower costs to start-ups alongside a highly skilled workforce. Athens also offers numerous advantages for both existing and new businesses including a growing economy, development of regional energy sources, and a large pool of advanced services and technology graduates from Ohio University and Hocking College.

Need help recruiting employees? The Area 14 Workforce Development Board procures, monitors and assists local providers of workforce development services to align human resources in our area with the needs of employers. They work closely with the Ohio Means Jobs Center and offer on-the-job training, career fairs and incumbent workforce training among other services to connect businesses with top talent.

The ACEDC also takes advantage of USDA programs and funding for rural business developments. Learn more at