Economic Development Resource Fair Re-Cap

The 2019 Economic Development Resource Fair was held on September 18 at the Eastern Shore Land Conservancy’s Conservation Center. The event consisted of four presentations on newly launched incentives, tax credits, and financing programs the business and commercial real estate community can leverage here in Talbot County. More than 40 people attended the event, including real estate professionals, business owners, lawyers, accountants, and other economic development stakeholders.

Download conference materials below

Program Overview

Maryland Commercial PACE: Jessa Coleman, Programs Manager at Pace Financial Servicing, delivered the first presentation. PACE (Property Assessed Clean Energy) financing provides 100% up-front capital to commercial property owners to implement building upgrades that save energy and lower operating costs. Improvements are repaid through a long-term surcharge on the property tax bill that transfers with the sale of the property.

Enterprise Zone: Abigail McKnight, Tax Specialist with the Maryland Department of Commerce, was next and delivered a presentation on the Enterprise Zone. The Enterprise Zone program is an economic development program established by the Maryland General Assembly to provide tax incentives to eligible businesses that are locating or expanding their facilities within designated zones. Talbot County offers two enterprise zones–one in Easton and one in Tilghman Island.

Opportunity Zone: Frank Dickson, Director of Strategic Business Initiatives at the Maryland Department of Housing and Community Development, took the stage next and presented on the Opportunity Zone program. The Opportunity Zone program is a nationwide initiative administered by the U.S. Treasury and created under the 2017 Tax Cuts and Job​s Act. The program provides federal tax incentives for investment in designated communities over the next 10 years. Much of downtown Easton has been designated an Opportunity Zone and investors will be able to reap the benefits of new capital investment to help redevelop the community.

Arts and Entertainment District: Ross Benincasa, Director of Discover Easton, capped the event with a presentation on the Arts and Entertainment District. Maryland’s A&E Districts help develop and promote community involvement, tourism, and revitalization through tax-related incentives that attract artists, arts organizations, and other creative enterprises to towns and cities across the State. Easton has an A&E district.

View and download photos here

Event Presentations and Contact Information

Maryland Commercial PACE: Download Presentation Here | Jessa Coleman, Programs Manager, PACE Financial Servicing | | 202-844-9504 |

Maryland Enterprise Zone: Download Presentation Here | Abigail McKnight, Tax Specialist, Maryland Department of Commerce | | 410-767-7234 |

Opportunity Zone: Download Presentation Here | Frank Dickson, Director of Strategic Business Initiatives, Maryland Department of Housing and Community Development | |  301-429-7425 |

Arts and Entertainment Districts: Download Presentation Here | Ross Benincasa, Director,Discover Easton | | 410-690-4395 |

Download our brochure on PACE here

Download our brochure on Enterprise Zone here

About Talbot County Department of Economic Development and Tourism

The Office of Economic Development and the Office of Tourism were merged in 2016 by the Talbot County County Council to fully leverage the synergy and common interest of the two offices. The mission of the Department of Economic Development and Tourism is to enhance and promote a business-friendly environment for current and prospective enterprises and to advocate for policies that support and strengthen the economic vitality of Talbot County. The vision the department sees for Talbot County is simple: Strong Communities. Empowered Businesses. Innovative Solutions.

If you own or operate a business here in Talbot County, or want to start one, you are encouraged to contact the Department of  Economic Development and Tourism at 410-770-8058 or visit their office at 215 Bay Street, Suite 5, Easton, MD.