Contact: Shawn Uhlman, PDC, 503-823-7994

July 03, 2012

Program to support business growth, create jobs and generate other community benefits

The state of Oregon has approved PDC’s application to establish an Enterprise Zone (E-Zone) focused predominantly on geography east of Cesar Chavez Boulevard.  PDC’s application was supported by numerous public and private entities, including Multnomah County, the Technology Association of Oregon, Greater Portland Inc., Columbia Corridor Association, the Port of Portland and the Portland City Council.

The E-Zone is a state economic development program proven to support business growth, job creation and community benefits from companies which make capital investments in their operations. In return, eligible companies receive a five-year property tax abatement on the value of their new investment.

The E-Zone program presents one of Portland’s strongest economic development tools for retaining and attracting jobs and employment. Since 1996, with more than 50 companies participating and 30 firms currently active, the City’s E-Zone program in North/Northeast Portland has leveraged more than $1 billion in private investments and has created and retained more than 5,000 full-time, quality jobs. In 2009 alone, E-Zone companies purchased $60 million in materials, supplies and services from other companies in Portland.

The new E-Zone will exist between Northeast Airport Way and Milwaukie and between Southeast Cesar Chavez Boulevard and Gresham. East Portland has both a growing population and increased diversity, but job and economic growth have not kept up at the same pace.

PDC Executive Director Patrick Quinton said, “We’ve seen the E-zone bring considerable benefits to the businesses and residents in North and Northeast Portland over the last 15 years. We’re eager to extend this positive impact on the local economy to east Portland as well.”

The proposed Zone will adopt the same formal policy that regulates the active Portland Enterprise Zone in North/Northeast Portland. That policy includes job training, job placement and other obligations intended to maximize the community benefits derived from qualified companies enrolled in the program.