Proposed Bill: TRI 2.0
As I’ve traveled the state over the last year as Director, I’ve met with many of you economic development professionals in rural areas who are proponents of the TRI but said that projects creating 20 jobs is unachievable.
This consistent feedback led us to our TRI “Micro” bill that would create a 3rd tier – a “micro” tier – for communities with less than 5,000 residents where a project could qualify for TRI by creating 10 or more jobs.
All the other parameters of TRI will remain the same – projects will still have to pay wages at or above the average county wage; require a community match; and declare TRI as a defining factor is relocating or expanding in Idaho.
We believe that by making TRI more accessible to Idaho’s smallest communities we’ll be able to positively impact Idaho’s rural economic development efforts.
Proposed Bill: IDAHO IT EQUIPMENT
The Idaho Information Technology Equipment Tax Rebate Bill would provide a sales tax rebate on eligible server equipment in data centers located in Idaho.
Idaho is already home to several small data centers and as we all know, the need to store data in our data-driven society is not going any way.
The goal of this legislation is to help Idaho’s existing data centers expand, as well as recruit new data centers to the state.
As you can imagine, it is extremely costly for these businesses to continually add to and upgrade their equipment. With much of the equipment priced in the tens of millions of dollars, these businesses are looking to locate in states willing to waive sales and use taxes in order to make this cost of doing business possible.
Like most industries, data centers tend to cluster, and many are in areas where they are running out of land to expand. Additionally, given its temperate climate, low natural disaster risk, and ample land, Idaho is an ideal location to house a data center.
To qualify for the rebate, existing Idaho data centers have to invest $5 million dollars in eligible server equipment in a year to qualify for 100 percent sales tax rebate on that equipment and anything purchased over that amount.
New to Idaho data centers have to invest $25 million in capital investment, including brick and mortar, and create 20 above county average wage jobs within 2 years of operation. Once these requirements are completed then they will be treated as an existing data center.
This bill has a sunset clause after 7 years and will be null and void in 2024.
We’re excited about the potential behind this bill. Idaho has had several big name data centers look to move here, but they ultimately chose not to because we do not have this kind of rebate in place.
The economic impact of data center construction and permanent jobs is substantial and being better able to attract this industry will help Idaho continue to grow its tech sector.