Deciding to relocate your business requires careful consideration for you, your employees and your family. Not only does this economic climate need to nurture your business, but the surrounding community and physical environment must nurture your lifestyle.
We know you’ll find north Idaho not only beautiful, but you’ll also find that we’re a terrific location for your business. Our primary focus in this region is the growth of all industries, with an additional focus on healthcare and information technology, where we have seen recent growth and want to continue to help drive those industries.
Coeur d’Alene (CdA) MSA consists of the main communities of Coeur d’Alene, Post Falls, Hayden, and Rathdrum which combined, makes up a population of over 160,000 people. The whole region (combined CdA/Spokane), has a population of over 730,000 and has grown by 9.8%. This change outpaced the national growth rate of 6.9% by 2.9%. The region is projected to continue its population growth trend, which is one of the highest in the nation. Population projections for the next 5 years are 40,500 for the whole region and 12,000 for the CdA MSA.
We are one of the nation’s fastest-growing metros, outpacing our surrounding states, and the nation, in both job and population growth. In the last 5 years, our region has grown 11.3%, with projections of 7.5% in the next five years. Running your business here means you’ll have access to a highly-skilled workforce of 350,000+ within a 30-40 minute drive, and it’s projected to grow by 38,000 in the next 5 years. Amidst all this growth, you’ll be happy to know that our communities have retained their friendly, ‘home town’ feel, where you can still make a difference in people’s lives.
Idaho is pro-business, providing a variety of tax and business incentives to help both existing and new businesses equally. In Idaho, you can count on a stable tax environment.
State incentives include:
Reimbursement up to $3,000 for costs of training a new employee or retaining one facing permanent layoff
State skills training programs tailored to corporate needs
On-site consultations from state workforce experts
Tax credits for investments, new job creation, real property improvement, and research; exemptions; and tax caps for large businesses
Investment Tax Credit: 0% on all new, depreciable, tangible personal property placed in Idaho
Research and Development Tax Credit: 0% tax credit on qualified research expenses
Sales Tax Exemption on Utilities & Industrial Fuels: Standard exemption for all business in state
Production Sales Tax Exemption: Businesses purchasing equipment and raw materials used directly in manufacturing, processing, mining, fabrication, logging, or semiconductor may earn a sales tax exemption
Real Property Tax Credit: 5% on investments in new plants, buildings, and structural components placed in service in Idaho
Idaho Business Advantage: Enhanced tax credits and rebates for companies investing $500K, with at least 10 jobs paying over $40,000/year and additional jobs averaging $15.50/hour
Tax Reimbursement Incentive (TRI): Businesses that create a minimum number of jobs (50 new jobs in urban communities), with an annual wage equal to or above the county annual average wage (currently at $16.30) may be eligible to receive a refund of up to 30% of their income, sales and payroll taxes for up to 15 years. Other rules apply
For additional information and a complete listing of tax incentives, please visit: Idaho Commerce
Idaho’s governor and legislature are decidedly pro-business, with a consistent record of tax and business incentives, a healthy state rainy day fund to avoid raising taxes (unlike other states during recessionary times), and no “hidden” taxes in addition to income tax which make corporate tax burdens heavier than at first they may appear.
One “plus,” which few other states have in this national and global economy, is a balanced budget. That’s right; Idaho is debt-free. It’s state law.
What People Say
The state agencies have been very business-friendly. We looked at a lot of places – New Hampshire, Colorado, and we had been located in California. Idaho is by far the best choice. It’s been the reason we’ve been very successful,”
Dr. Lorna Finman, Stanford physicist and owner of LCF Enterprises in Post Falls
Local incentives are by statute and come in the form of tax exemptions or assistance with public infrastructure via tax increment financing. Other local and state incentives are offered in the form of credits, exemptions or resources, and are available for both new and existing businesses.
Personal Property Tax Exemption: Businesses are allowed an exemption on the first $100,000 of “personal property,” such as equipment and furnishings
Property Tax Exemption on Motor Vehicles: Standard exemption for all businesses in the state
Property Tax Exemption: A full or partial property tax exemption up to 5 years (renewable annually) can be granted by the Kootenai Commissioners, awards are dependent on total capital investment, type of jobs created, how much wages are above the county average, and the company’s long term commitment to the county
Idaho Department of Labor Support Services: Available to qualified businesses from the regional office.
-Customized Recruiting Services, including one-on-one assistance to help find, screen and hire the right employees, along with access to the local office to conduct interviews or hold a job fair
-Customized Training Services, including on-the-job training programs that develop skills customized to a company’s specific processes
-Customized on-site consultations to assess workforce needs from state workforce experts
-Workforce Development Training Funds as reimbursement for employers who are expanding or trying to retain at least five positions
TAX INCREMENT FINANCING
In 1985, the Idaho state legislature adopted the Local Economic Development Act authorizing the use of tax increment financing. There are currently three cities in Kootenai County which provide tax increment financing to help with public infrastructure construction, with a total of 12 districts located throughout the area. Financing for development within these districts is available through Coeur d’Alene’s Redevelopment Agency known as LCDC. This agency can provide businesses relocating their facility within these districts some attractive financing opportunities that will help pay for the required infrastructure.
Here’s an example: The Mill River development team, with LCDC partnership funding, has reclaimed an old forest product mill site and is creating a 100-acre mixed-use live, work and play development along the Spokane River. In January 2005, LCDC entered into an owner participation agreement with the Mill River development team to aid with the establishment of project-related public improvements including public roadway construction, traffic signalization, water & sewer mainline extensions, streetscaping, and creation of a public beach and park on 1,500 feet of Spokane River water frontage.
Local economic development agencies are:
Defer capital gains tax with Opportunity Zones under the Tax Reform Act.
The recently passed Tax Reform Act included a potential tax break for investors. An investor may defer capital gains taxes on the sale of any Opportunity Zone asset. These taxes can potentially be deferred until December 31, 2026, or the date of a sale (whichever is earlier). This original capital gains tax is reduced over time, and if held long enough, new appreciation on the investment can be realized tax-free.
How does the Opportunity Zone program work?
An investor sells an asset and generates a capital gain. The capital gains from that investment must be reinvested within 180 days into a designated Opportunity Zone (OZ). An OZ is a specially designated census tract. Large parts of the U.S. are eligible for designation, including many commercial, industrial and residential areas. If the investment is held, the capital gains liability on the original investment will be reduced by 10% after five years and by 15% after seven years. After 10 years, the new capital gains taxes generated from the opportunity fund investment are reduced to zero.
NEW MARKETS TAX CREDIT
The New Markets Tax Credit (NMTC) Program was established in 2000 as part of the Community Renewal Tax Relief Act of 2000. Essentially, the New Markets Tax Credit Program incentivizes business and real estate investment in low-income communities of the United States via a federal tax credit. The program is administered by the US Treasury Department’s Community Development Financial Institutions Fund and allocated by local Community Development Entities across the United States
EDUCATION & WORKFORCE
Kootenai County is home to four educational institutions, providing a variety of professional technical certifications, stackable credits, academic degrees and continuing education programs. North Idaho College, Lewis and Clark State College, and branches of both the University of Idaho and Boise State University are in a joint campus providing programs terminating in an Associate of Arts to executive MBA degrees. Program curriculum ranges from aerospace composite fabrication to CNC operation, CDL Certification, computer science, technicians and everything in between. Moreover, customized workforce training is available through North Idaho College Workforce Training Center, whether it’s for soft skills or specific technical skills. In an effort to inspire the next generation, the region promotes early childhood education through third grade reading programs and STEM-based summer camps.
For additional information:
North Idaho College (NIC)
NIC Career and Technical Education Center-CTEC
Kootenai Technical Education Center-KTEC (for 11th/12th graders)
NIC Workforce Training Center
Lewis and Clark State College
University of Idaho, Cd’A Branch
Boise State University, Cd’A Branch
The combined Coeur d’Alene and Spokane MSA’s draw from a rich, diverse population of over 750,000 people, with 346,000 highly-trained and readily available workforce – 37 percent of whom have an Associate’s Degree or higher and another 27 percent with some level of higher education. Local business owners cite productivity, work ethics, low absenteeism, and low turnover rates as examples of workforce excellence. Additionally, Idaho is a “right to work” state, with only a small percentage (8%) of the workforce unionized.
Spokane is uniquely positioned to train the next generation and meet the advanced manufacturing industry’s workforce demands of the future. In fact, the Spokane region has developed a comprehensive multi-sector strategy in which the development of human capital is a key component.
Companies throughout the aerospace supply chain rely on the 25 colleges and universities to provide comprehensive and targeted training programs in aerospace, high-tech and advanced manufacturing. There are over 100,000 students earning technical certifications and advanced degrees providing a well-trained and work-ready employment resource.
Ziply Fiber, Spectrum, Time Warner, Intermax Networks, Syringa Networks, TDS Telecom and Fatbeam provide service to the area through advanced digital network with cutting-edge switching technology and fiber deployment. Diverse route capability is in place via sonnet-based fiber rings connecting Coeur d’Alene, Post Falls, Rathdrum, Hayden and Spirit Lake. Separate diverse fiber rings provide local network access to interexchange carrier points of presence (POPs), i.e., AT&T, Sprint, as well as redundancy. For more information, please visit:
Fatbeam (provides dark fiber)
POWER & GAS
Avista Utilities provides both power and natural gas services in the area. Commercial power rates are highly competitive at 10 cents per kWh (small commercial) and 6.2 cents per kWh (large commercial). Gas rates are 90 cents per therm. For more information, please visit the Avista website.
Avista Utilities provides both power and natural gas services in the area. Commercial power rates are highly competitive at 10 cents per kWh (small commercial) and 6.2 cents per kWh (large commercial). Gas rates are 90 cents per therm.
Kootenai Electric Cooperative is a not-for-profit electric utility and provides power to the area. Commercial power rates are competitive at less than 8 cents per kWh for small and medium commercial and less than 6.5 cents per kWh for large commercial. Service Availability and Demand Charges also apply. For more information, please visit kec.com.
WATER & SEWER
The City of Coeur d’Alene Finance Department provides billing for city utilities, which include water, sewer, garbage, streetlights, and stormwater. For reference, water rates are roughly $9.00-$10.00 for a 1” service per month, plus $1.05 to $1.50 per 1,000 gallons for commercial accounts. Sewer fees are also very reasonable –$9.30 base + $3.50 – $4.50 per Kgal in Coeur d’Alene and comparable in Post Falls.
The cities of Post Falls and Coeur d’Alene provide water and sewer services for the sites listed above. For reference, Post Falls and Coeur d’Alene water rates are roughly:
$9.00- $10.00 for a 1” service per month, plus $1.05 to $1.50 per 1,000 gallons for commercial accounts. Sewer fees are: $9.30 base + $3.50 – $4.50 per kilogallon in Coeur d’Alene and comparable in Post Falls.
Coeur d’Alene has several means of transportation, from trucking to shipping, rail, and air. Coeur d’Alene is 40 miles from Spokane International Airport, which provides convenient access to air cargo and package services. Next day air and forwarding services are available. Coeur d’Alene is 113 miles from the Port of Lewiston, which is at the head of navigation of the Columbia/Snake River system. Cargo moved through the Port of Lewiston accesses ocean shipping at Portland, Oregon. The Coeur d’Alene area is also served by several trucking firms locally and in Spokane.
Transportation access in the region is excellent! From trucking to shipping to rail & air service and even on a barge, transportation access abounds in the region. Seattle is 5 hours away via I90 (1 hour by air), with Portland and Vancouver, BC, 6 and 7 hours away (2 hours by air), respectively. Spokane International Airport is a 7,000-acre commercial service airport served by six airlines and two air cargo carriers. The airport processed nearly 3.6 million passengers and 72,376 U.S. air cargo tons in 2017. It is the second-largest airport in the State of Washington and recognized by the FAA as a small hub. The Airport employs over 3,000 people and has an important and expanding airfield aerospace industry cluster. There are more than 1,400 single stop connections from GEG to 229 unique destinations in the domestic US. GEG also offers 35 single stop connections to Canada to 6 unique destinations. Beyond the U.S. and Canada, there are 39 single stop international connections to 21 unique destinations in Europe, Asia, Mexico, and Central America.
Air Service. Spokane International Airport (GEG) provides access to all points across the globe and convenient access to air cargo and package service, with next day air and forwarding services readily available. GEG provides nonstop service to 12 cities and continuing (same plane, one-stop) service to another 15+ cities. Spokane International Airport is 20-30 minutes away from Post Falls and Coeur d’Alene.
Road/Highway Access. The region is at the intersection of I90 & US95. I90 is a major east-west route across the US, linking Seattle to Boston and giving the region easy access to the east and to the northwest and beyond through the ports of Seattle, Portland, and Vancouver. US95 links to I15, creating a north-south route across the western states from Mexico to Canada. Idaho Transportation Department
Rail Access. Burlington Northern Santa Fe and Union Pacific provide cross-country rail to all points in the US, extending north to Canada through Canadian rail service providers.
Port Service & Shipping. Port of Lewiston is only 113 miles south via US95 (or Washington State 904). The Port is the head of navigation for the Columbia/Snake River system, moving cargo from Lewiston to the Pacific seaports.