BUSINESS SUPPORT AND INCENTIVE POLICY

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					                                   BUSINESS SUPPORT AND INCENTIVE POLICY
                                                                            Controlled Document
                                                            GDS Category; Economic Development
                                                                          Public Document? YES
                                                                                  Date: July 2006
                                                                                     Page 1 of 4
                                                                                       Version: 2


POLICY

Background

From time to time, the City of Whyalla Council is approached by businesses seeking assistance to
enable them to establish, extend or operate in the Whyalla region.

Principles for provision of specific support and incentives to individual businesses

In order for Council to consider future requests from businesses for support and incentives to
establish, expand and operate within the City, the following principles should be applied:
     The provision of incentives to business should be the exception rather than the rule.
     The City should consider each proposition on its individual merits.
     Any existing Whyalla business should be treated in an equal way to new business.
     The business must be able to clearly demonstrate how its activity will add to the sustainable
     employment base and economy of Whyalla.
     Businesses should be able to demonstrate examples of sound financial and trading records
     for at least three (3) years and have shown that there is a well prepared Business Plan in
     place. As a general rule, Council would not support a new start up business unless it was
     satisfactorily operating elsewhere.
     Businesses should add to the diversity of the City’s economic base and should not generally
     compete directly with an established Whyalla business.
     Businesses must be able to operate and grow on a profitable, viable basis in the long term in
     Whyalla.
     Any incentives given to a local business should not give that business an unfair competitive
     advantage over its local competitors.
     If a business has received past assistance from the City, then the provision of further
     incentives should not constitute provision of on-going incentives to that business proponent
     to:
            either support past investment decisions for which assistance was provided or;
            support the ongoing viability of the business.
     The City should not become involved in an ongoing bidding process. Once a package is
     developed, it should be adhered to, except for minor refinements.

Criteria by which to judge businesses when considering provision of support and incentives
It is recommended that the following criteria should be applied to businesses seeking support from
the City:

     The extent to which the business is flexible as to location.
     Number of sustainable long term jobs created or retained.
     Level of long term, viable business investment.
     Increase in exports from the region.
     Replacement of imports into the region.
     Potential to lead to further business activity or investment.
     The degree to which the proposal fits and will assist in the implementation of Council’s and
     WEDB’s economic strategies.
                                    BUSINESS SUPPORT AND INCENTIVE POLICY
                                                                              Controlled Document
                                                              GDS Category; Economic Development
                                                                            Public Document? YES
                                                                                    Date: July 2006
                                                                                       Page 2 of 4
                                                                                         Version: 2


Specific areas that the City can offer as support and incentive to businesses

A number of specific areas where the City has potential to support businesses have been
identified. The role of these incentives is to act as the catalyst and not the driver of the business
investment decision. The incentives are intended to help cause the investment decision to be
taken in Whyalla, but not to be the key financial variable upon which the investment’s viability is
based. As a catalyst, the provision of incentives must be deemed to be able to influence an
investment decision in favour of Whyalla, with commensurate favourable economic outcomes for
the City.

It is considered that once a business is identified as being worthy of support, an appropriate mix of
the following points be tailored to best suit the business and its proposal:

      Development Approval Fees

      The City can consider waiving building and planning fees associated with the establishment
      or expansion of the business, or making a grant to offset some or all of these fees.

      Rates and Charges

      The City can consider the provision of a rebate for a relevant rate and/or service charge
      where the business can demonstrate that at least 40 new long-term sustainable jobs will be
      created as per the following criteria:

            no rates to be levied until the plant is commissioned;
            Council rates to be phased in over a 5 year period at :
            Year 1      20%
            Year 2      40%
            Year 3      60%
            Year 4      80%
            Year 5     100%

      Temporary Accommodation

      The City can, where it is appropriate, assist financially and organisationally with the provision
      of appropriate business and residential accommodation for the principles of the company
      during establishment. As a general rule, this would not extend beyond two (2) years.

      Establishment Costs

      The City can assist in appropriate circumstances with the provision of local government type
      infrastructure.

      Lease of City owned buildings

      The City could consider leasing premises to businesses so as to enable them to establish or
      expand. Such leases could be discounted below market value to act as an incentive to the
      business.
                                    BUSINESS SUPPORT AND INCENTIVE POLICY
                                                                               Controlled Document
                                                               GDS Category; Economic Development
                                                                             Public Document? YES
                                                                                     Date: July 2006
                                                                                        Page 3 of 4
                                                                                          Version: 2


     Involvement of Councillors, WEDB and Senior Management

     Meetings should be set up very early in the process of assisting a business to expand or
     establish. These meetings should involve appropriate Councillors, particularly the Mayor,
     Chair of Economic Development Committee, Chair of WEDB and senior management,
     involving the Chief Executive Officer and Chief Executive Officer of WEDB, where
     appropriate. Such meetings will establish the interest and commitment of Council and
     WEDB with regards to the business.

     Nomination of a specific “facilitation officer” for the project

     It may be appropriate to nominate a WEDB representative to work with the company during
     the establishment phase of the business. This officer would be responsible for looking after
     the business representatives, introducing them to Whyalla and local businesses and
     coordinating development approvals, to maintain contact with the business so as to ensure
     that they know what is happening at every stage of the process.

     Involvement of WEDB

     WEDB is very well placed to assist new business people settle into Whyalla, introducing
     them to useful associations, networks, assisting the family to settle in Whyalla, taking new
     business people to local sporting and cultural events and generally making them feel
     welcome. Business people will feel more comfortable being with other business people
     rather than City officials.

     State and Federal Government Liaison

     Council and WEDB should seek to assist the business in its dealings with State and Federal
     Government. Meetings should be arranged as appropriate and local politicians should be
     approached to assist in lobbying for support from State and Federal Government.

     Information

     Council and WEDB should provide appropriate and timely information to business so as to
     make the decision making process as easy as possible.


Administrative Arrangements

The nature of requests for business support requires that they be dealt with expediently through a
“Business Support Group”, with the authority to determine appropriate areas of support within limits
of budget and delegated authority of Council Officers and WEDB. It is essential that this group be
able to be called together at short notice so as to ensure an efficient handling of the request. The
membership of this group is as follows:

     Mayor (Chair)
     Chairperson of Council’s Economic Development Committee
     Chairperson of WEDB
     Chief Executive Officer
     Chief Executive Officer of WEDB
                                   BUSINESS SUPPORT AND INCENTIVE POLICY
                                                                       Controlled Document
                                                       GDS Category; Economic Development
                                                                     Public Document? YES
                                                                             Date: July 2006
                                                                                Page 4 of 4
                                                                                  Version: 2


All assistance measures must be reported in confidence to the Economic Development Committee.



RESPONSIBLE PERSON

Chief Executive Officer and Group Manager Development Services


PROCEDURES

Incorporated in the policy statement


AUTHORITY

Adopted by Council: 17 July 2006


DOCUMENTATION

Previously filed in Council Policy Manual

				
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