Perryville ponders expanding town enterprise zones
Delays final vote until Jan.
— The mayor and commissioners tabled a resolution Tuesday night that would have added the former Perryville Outlets site to its properties designated as enterprise zones.
Commissioner Ray Ryan III suggested setting the measure aside so the town could look for other areas to add to the enterprise zone.
“The whole idea is to get economic development in here,” he said. “Are we limiting ourselves? Can we place other areas in town into this economic development benefit?”
Properties inside the zone are eligible for specific tax breaks from both the town and Cecil County as an incentive to bring business to Perryville.
If approved, the resolution would boost the size of the enterprise zones in town to more than 300 acres and create the county’s 10th enterprise zone. The eight other zones are already recognized industrial parks along the Route 40/Interstate 95 corridor as well as the Bainbridge site in Port Deposit.
Mary Ann Skilling, town planner, noted that the IKEA property is already in an enterprise zone, which allows for a wide variety of businesses including light manufacturing, fabrication, wholesale distribution and warehousing.
Ryan suggested that downtown could also be a prime spot for the special designation.
“We’re saying here’s some incentives
for someone to buy and build up there. Why can’t we do it down here?” the commissioner said.
Amanda Hickman, economic development coordinator, explained that the enterprise zone designation is not for retail, which is the desired type of business for downtown Perryville.
“This program is geared toward high volume,” Hickman said.
Skilling told the board that the Cecil County Council is on a legislative hiatus until after the November election. She said the council plans to consider any applications — including Perryville’s — next year, with final approval after April.
The town board agreed unanimously to set the measure aside and study it further.
Perryville Town Planner Mary Ann Skilling shows the mayor and commissioners the area off Heather Lane — the former Perryville Outlets property — targeted to become the new enterprise zone.