Discretionary Incentives

Job Development Credit

A Job Development Credit (JDC) is a discretionary, performance-based incentive that rebates a portion of new employees' withholding taxes that can be used to address the specific needs of individual companies. JDCs are approved on a case-by-case basis by the S.C. Coordinating Council for Economic Development. To qualify, a company must meet certain business requirements and the amount a company receives depends on the company's pay structure and location.

Economic Development Set-Aside Program

The Economic Development Set-Aside Program assists companies in locating or expanding in South Carolina through road or site improvements and other costs related to business location or expansion. Overseen by the Coordinating Council for Economic Development, it is the Council’s primary business development tool for assisting local governments with road, water/sewer infrastructure, or site improvements related to business location or expansion.

Enterprise Zone Retraining Credit Program

The Enterprise Zone Retraining Credit Program helps existing industries maintain their competitive edge and retain their existing workforce by allowing them to claim a Retraining Credit for existing production employees. If approved for the Enterprise Zone Retraining Credit, companies can reimburse themselves up to 50% of approved training costs for eligible production workers (not to exceed $500 per person per year). This program is also overseen by the Coordinating Council for Economic Development.

Rural Infrastructure Fund

The Rural Infrastructure Fund (RIF) assists qualified counties in the state's rural areas by providing financial assistance for infrastructure and other activities that enhance economic growth and development. It can be used for job creation and/or product development. Qualified counties are designated as “Tier III” or “Tier IV” by the Department of Revenue and have received approval for an economic development strategic plan by the Coordinating Council for Economic Development.

Port Volume Increase Credit

South Carolina provides a possible credit against income taxes or withholding taxes to entities that use state port facilities and increase base port cargo volume by 5% over base-year totals. To qualify, a company must have 75 net tons of non-containerized cargo or 10 loaded TEUs transported through a South Carolina port for their base year.

The Coordinating Council has the sole discretion in determining eligibility for the credit and the amount and type of credit that a company may receive. The total amount of tax credits allowed to all qualifying companies is limited to $8 million per calendar year. A company must submit an application to the Coordinating Council to determine its qualification for, and the amount and type of, any tax credit it will receive.

Tourism Infrastructure Development Grants

The Tourism Infrastructure Development Grant supports new or expanding tourism or recreation facilities or designated development areas primarily through infrastructure projects. This program is generated from a share of the state admissions tax on qualified tourism and recreation establishments and is overseen by the Coordinating Council for Economic Development.

The Coordinating Council for Economic Development

The Coordinating Council for Economic Development, established in 1986 by the General Assembly, was formed in response to a general need for improved coordination of economic development efforts by those state agencies involved in the recruitment of new business and the expansion of current enterprises throughout the state. The Council consists of the heads or board chairs of 11 state agencies concerned with economic development: S.C. Department of Commerce, State Ports Authority, S.C. Department of Parks, Recreation & Tourism, S.C. Department of Agriculture, S.C Technical College System, S.C. Research Authority, S.C. Department of Employment and Workforce, S.C. Department of Revenue, Jobs for Economic Development Authority, S.C. Department of Transportation and Santee Cooper.