Business & Tax Incentives

Lee County maintains a stable tax environment and offers attractive incentives to new and existing businesses to encourage the creation of new jobs and investment. Additional assistance is available for qualified businesses. For Economic Development information contact Winston Oxford at 229-759-2422 or email Winston at winstono@lee.ga.us.

Georgia's Corporate Income Tax

Georgia's corporate income tax rate of 6% has remained unchanged since 1969. For all tax years beginning on or after January 1, 2008, manufacturing, sales and service companies doing business in Georgia are to use a "Single Factor Gross Receipts" apportionment formula. This new method of apportionment results in a substantial reduction of Georgia income taxes for companies that manufacture products within the state of Georgia, sell goods from a Georgia base, or render services from a Georgia base, but sell those products or services to customers in other states. This change was designed to encourage manufacturing, distribution and service companies to invest or expand in Georgia.

Incentives for Job Creation and Investment

Job Tax Credit Program

Georgia's Business Expansion Support (BEST) Act provides qualified businesses in -Lee County job tax credits of $1,750 each year for five years for each new full time job created. Companies can qualify for this credit if they create 15 new jobs in a year and are engaged in manufacturing, processing, and distribution or headquarters activities.

Example: $1,750 x 20 new jobs x 5 years=$175,000 in tax credits

Additional information on the Job Tax Credit Program, including regulations and forms, may be found on DCA’s Job Tax Credit web page at: http://www.dca.ga.gov/economic/TaxCredits/programs/taxcredit.asp.

Port Job Tax Credit Program

Georgia's Port Job Tax Credit Bonus is a $1,250 per job bonus for businesses that already qualify for the regular job tax credit and have an increase in shipments into or out of a Georgia Port.

Example: $3,000 x 20 new jobs x 5 years = $300,000 in tax credits

Job Tax Credits and the Port Job Tax Bonus Credits earned in Lee County may be used to offset up to 50% of a company's Georgia corporate income tax liability in any taxable year following the year in which the credits are earned. Credits not used may be carried forward and applied for up to 10 years.

Strategic Industries Tax Credit

In 2005, the Georgia Legislature approved a Strategic Industries Tax Credit that allows for a $500 per job tax credit bonus for each new full-time position created by existing business enterprises that have been headquartered in the state for three or more years.

Additional credits are available for equipment, capital investments, retraining employees, childcare, R&D, and small business growth companies.

Inventory Tax Exemption (Freeport)

All Lee County taxing entities allow a 100% Freeport tax exemption (ad valorem) for the following classes of inventory:

  • Raw materials and goods in process of manufacture
  • Finished goods produced in Georgia
  • Finished goods destined for shipment out-of-state.

Industrial Revenue Bond (IRB) Financing

Tax exempt bond financing is available for companies seeking to finance the purchase of land, buildings and equipment for eligible manufacturing projects. Rates for tax-exempt bonds are market-based and established on the credit and strength of the individual company and projects. Tax-exempt IRB financing can be used for projects with capital investment between $1 million and $10 million.

Sales and Use Tax and Exemptions

Lee County and State of Georgia Sales Tax totals 7%. Georgia Law provides a 100% sales and use tax exemption for qualified purchases including:

  • raw materials
  • goods intended for resale
  • qualified machinery used directly in the manufacture of tangible personal property
  • material handling equipment used in qualified distribution businesses.