Carolyn Honeycutt, Executive Director
Businesses pay taxes. It’s part of doing business. But how many get a say in what happens with that money once it goes to Olympia? The EDA can help you bring 75% of your excise taxes back to Ellensburg. Read on.
Over the years, the EDA has been a catalyst for change in downtown. We have brought in new planters, trash receptacles, benches, and bike racks. Sparkled up the downtown with holiday lighting and expanded roofline lighting. Created and improved events, enhanced promotion of downtown with maps, a new website featuring all businesses, a downtown dining guide, social media, and helped develop entrepreneurs. We’ve been busy!
The EDA office runs lean, with only three employees and many volunteers to help with the heavy lifting. We have a strong diversified budget, an important asset in our continued growth. Sponsorships, contracts, partnerships, and the Tax Credit program help keep our organization growing.
So how does this tax program work? It’s very easy and takes only a few moments to get signed up. Say for instance you are a business that pays $7,500 annually in B&O Taxes. Your business can log into the state, sign up to donate $10,000 to the EDA, write a check to the EDA for $10,000 by mid-November 2018, and then in January 2019, you will receive all $7,500 back in tax credits to use until gone. And, as a non-profit, your entire donation could be eligible as a charitable donation (I’m not a CPA, but it’s what I’ve been told by those who know stuff).
Seems too good to be true. It isn’t! Finally, something in life that sounds as good as the reality. And what will the EDA do with the money? Expand programs, marketing, beautification projects, and more exposure for downtown.
In the past, this program has been limited by the availability of tax credits state-wide. The legislation this past year expanded the program, realizing that the impact these funds bring to our local communities is immeasurable. So right now…today…there are tax credits available to help you help Ellensburg. You must sign up by March 15th and someone from the EDA is happy to stop by and walk you through the program.
You can also touch base with some of our fantastic donors and see how it works for them. For 2018 they include: Iron Horse Brewery (our largest contributor), Yakima Federal Savings and Loan, Puget Sound Energy, Heritage Bank/Central Valley Bank, Fitterer’s Furniture, Ward Rugh, Ellensburg Pasta Company/Bruce’s Place, Trellis Advisors, Ellensburg Floral & Gifts, Cashmere Valley Bank, Kittitas Valley Greenhouse, Wray Industries, Grebb, Johnson, Reed & Wachsmith, and Shaw’s Furniture & Appliance. Be part of the businesses who are making a difference. Kudos to them for having the confidence that their tax dollars are hard at work in Ellensburg.