Grandview Heights City Council's economic development committee Thursday discussed various policy elements that could be part of the economic incentive guidelines for the Grandview Yard project.

Grandview Heights City Council's economic development committee Thursday discussed various policy elements that could be part of the economic incentive guidelines for the Grandview Yard project.

Patrik Bowman, director of administration/economic development, presented a set of potential tax credit incentive percentages based on the city's revenue needs for Grandview Yard.

The assumption is the city will offer its usual amount of around 25 percent as the minimum amount, Bowman said. The negotiations to date have targeted up to 50 percent after the first phase of the project, with the understanding that more could be negotiated for a large deal.

Bowman presented minimum and/or maximum amounts for several determinants, including payroll, purchased or leased office space, investment, growth and target companies.

For payroll, the model assumption is four employees and payroll of $210,000 for every 1,000 square feet of office space, Bowman said.

A business meeting that target could get a 25 percent tax abatement, he said. A business that doubles that mark could get 50 percent.

The minimum desired office space in the development is projected to be about 1.1 million square feet, or about 110,000 square feet averaged over 10 years, Bowman said. A business that takes 50,000 to 110,000 square feet may get a 50 percent tax incentive or more especially if it means a new building gets started, he said. A business that takes 25,000 to 50,000 square feet may get 25 percent.

A combination of payroll and space may result in a greater incentive, Bowman said.

Companies that will need to invest more in such elements as equipment, computers or lab space may also receive a larger incentive, he said.

Firms that commit to employee growth may gain a greater incentive as targets are reached, Bowman said. A firm that anticipates doubling its payroll could see its incentives doubled if those marks are met.

The city will also need to work with the developer to determine what type of industry clusters would have a synergy in Grandview and the development, he said.

The city's previous economic strategy identifies those industries are likely to be tech corridor, life science and creative, Bowman said.

He was painting a picture using a "pretty broad brush," he acknowledged. "I wanted to throw it out to see if it makes any kind of sense."

During the committee discussion, which included input from other council members, consensus was reached regarding some provisions that should be included in the economic incentive policy.

The committee agreed legislation declaring the city does not want big-box development should be created and forwarded to the planning commission for its review.

Big-box developments involve a large amount of square footage for the amount of tax dollars it generates, council member Steve Von Jasinski said.

Council member P'Elizabeth Koelker suggested to general agreement that the city should make clear it will not provide incentives for development that does not fit in with the community plan for the Grandview Yard area.

The committee also agreed that businesses moving to Grandview from outside the central Ohio area will be given more consideration for incentives.

Such a policy would help in the effort to discourage "poaching" among central Ohio communities, council president Steve Reynolds said.

The city should also make clear it intends to not only encourage companies to move into Grandview, but also encourage firms to stay and retain their employees in the community, he said.