- Urban Enterprise Zone (UEZ) Information
Urban Enterprise Zone (UEZ) Information
The Urban Enterprise Zone Program is a tax incentive program to facilitate commercial and business development in designated commercial zones. The State Department of New Jersey's Department of Community Affairs administers the program. The City of Long Branch received UEZ designation in 1994 and the program is operated out of the City's Office of Community and Economic Development and is overseen by a UEZ Coordinator. Long Branch's Zone is one of the 37 across the State of New Jersey.
How Does It Work?
A business that is located in designated Urban Enterprise Zones must show proof of being registered with the NJ State Commerce and Economic Development Office and have a viable NJ State, tax identification number. The business must also be tax compliant, and that means not having any discrepancies with the required annual filings of taxes with the NJ State Division of Taxation. An application for UEZ Certification must then be submitted to the NJ State UEZ Office and upon the review of the Trenton Office, certification is awarded to the applying business. The local UEZ staff will assist the business in this process. However, the application is submitted online. Contact the UEZ NJ State office at 609-292-1912 for more information. There is no fee involved and once certified, a business is entitled to specific tax exemption benefits.
Long Branch UEZ Program Membership Benefits
Belonging to the City of Long Branch UEZ Program, which is administered by the NJ State Department of Community Affairs (DCA) entitles members to:
- Low-Interest Loans to be used for investments in fixed assets.
- Reduced Sales Tax, currently at 3.5%.
- Tax-Free Purchases on certain items such as capital equipment, facility expansions, and upgrades.
- Financial Assistance from agencies such as the New Jersey Economic Development Authority.
- Subsidized Unemployment Insurance costs for employees who earn less than $4,500 per quarter.
- Energy Sales Tax Exemption for qualified manufacturing firms with at least 250 employees, 50% of whom are working in manufacturing.
- Tax Credit Options of up to $1,500 for new permanent full-time employees hired; or up to an 8% Corporate Business Tax credit on qualified investments.
Status of the UEZ Program
While the UEZ Program is presently being run by the Department of Community Affairs it allows businesses to make applications for certification to receive the aforementioned benefits. The present administration has reinstated the Program and has made available funds to participating municipalities for business growth and economic development initiatives.
There are a few merchant groups that hold monthly meetings. New members are always welcome and encouraged to attend. Come and find out what's new and exciting in your area and take an active role in decisions and ideas that affect your business.
Meetings for the Uptown area take place on the third Tuesday of each month at 9 am Call or email Robert Goodman at 732-923-2041 for more information.
The Downtown (Lower Broadway) merchant meetings take place on the third Wednesday of each month at 8:30 am at the Brookdale Learning Center, 213 Broadway. This group includes merchants from the Eastern and midtown areas. Call or email Rosie Rogers at 732-923-2043 for additional information.
Businesses in the Uptown, Midtown, West End and Lower Broadway areas are all eligible for this grant (up to $10,000 in matching funds) and many applications are currently awaiting approval.
If any merchant or business owner in the areas specified above would like to apply for this grant, please contact Jacob L. Jones, the UEZ director at 732-923-2040. Specific guidelines must be adhered to, and businesses requesting this assistance must be members of the UEZ program.
It's never too late to become a UEZ member, even if you've been an established business. Please call the Urban Enterprise Zone Secretary, Rosie Rogers at 732-923-2043. Tonya will provide you with the necessary information and forms regarding membership. Upon acceptance by the state, businesses may charge a discounted sales tax (3.4375% as of January 1, 2017) to customers and also may purchase business equipment tax-free. There are additional tax relief benefits if your business hires employees who reside within the zone and who have recently been unemployed or on public assistance.
The benefits of this program far outweigh the paperwork involved and it is definitely worth finding out if your business is eligible to obtain this designation. Historically, these funds have helped to improve parking areas, and sidewalks, make available facade improvement grants and offset the expense of many events and programs throughout the year. This is truly a program that lets you see firsthand our tax dollars at work.