The Michigan Economic Development Corporation approved tax breaks Tuesday in exchange for new investment and jobs.
MEDC spokesman Joseph Serwach says one of the four projects receiving tax breaks includes a much-needed grocery store in the City of Detroit.
“We just approved a Whole Foods earlier this year for Midtown Detroit,” Serwach said. “Now Meijer is also coming into Detroit – this is something that the city’s been looking for for a long time.”
Detroit has been labeled a “food desert,” because of its lack of grocery stores with fresh produce. The $3.3 million state tax incentive will help cover the demolition of the former Redford High School in order to build a new Meijer store.
A $4.7 million tax break goes to a project in downtown Grand Rapids. The Grand Rapids Urban Market will operate a seasonal farmers market and a year-round indoor market.
While Governor Snyder’s administration has reduced the number of tax incentives, Serwach says they’ve focused more on the state’s major urban centers.
“Those are both examples of our cities growing again, our urban core growing again and that’s good for the whole state,” Serwach said.
From the press release today:
Effective October 1, the $100 million Michigan Business Development and Michigan Community Revitalization Programs replaced the state’s previous MEGA, Brownfield and Historic tax credit programs that were features of the Michigan Business Tax that was eliminated under business tax restructuring legislation approved and signed into law by Governor Rick Snyder in May.
Serwach says those limitations will not be in place until the end of this calendar year.
Another project in downtown Kalamazoo will get $3.1 million tax break. The Exchange Project will turn “a surface parking lot into an eight-story mixed-use development that will include residential, office, commercial and retail space.”
The fourth project is in the Village of Dexter in Washtenaw County. Tax incentives will help pay to demolish a light industrial park and make way for the Dexter Wellness Center.
Combined, the projects are expected to create around four-hundred new, permanent fulltime jobs.