On August 25th, Go-Biz announced that it had received 341 applications for the 2nd round of California Competes tax credits to be awarded for 2015. On November 10th, Go-Biz posted that 89 applicant companies received California Competes awards. This roughly translates as a 1 in 4 award rate for applicants. Awardees consisted of 30 small businesses and 59 non-small business entities. In the typical process, each applicant business proposes a target award. As has been the case previously, accordingly, awards ranged in size from $20K to $4M.
The California Competes FAQ as well as the Application Guide are both helpful in understanding the entire application and award process. In short, the process consists of a two-phase application wherein the business provides specific information about the nature of the company as well as a business case for a specific award amount.
From the Go-Biz Application Workshop Presentation, credit awards are based on 11 factors:
- Number of jobs created or retained
- Compensation paid to employees
- Amount of investment
- Extent of unemployment or poverty in business area
- Other incentives available in California
- Incentives available in other states
- Duration of proposed project and duration of commitment to remain in this state
- Overall economic impact
- Strategic importance to the state, region, or locality
- Opportunity for future growth and expansion
- Extent of the benefit to the state exceeds the amount of tax credit
Application assistance is available through Go-Biz. There are also several private consulting firms which offer California Competes application assistance services.