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Development Authority of Fulton County

Written by admin. Posted in Government

Trying to decide where to expand or relocate without assistance can be time-consuming and costly if you make even the slightest mistake.

Site selectors need accurate information on available land, buildings, tax incentives, financing assistance, workforce characteristics, transportation and power infrastructure and much more to complete an expansion or relocation search.

That’s where the Development Authority of Fulton County, with its expansive “toolbox” of economic development and site selection assets, comes in.

The DAFC regularly partners with site selection consultants and businesses planning to expand and relocate to help them find suitable sites, explore financing and tax incentives, meet with energy suppliers and technology experts, and evaluate the local workforce.

If you’re in a site search, don’t go it alone — let the DAFC use the host of tools in its site selection toolbox, including federal, state and local programs, data and assistance, to help you make the right choice the first time.
Site Selection Assistance
Successful expansions and relocations depend on accurate and complete data, and the DAFC can assist you with everything you need. Whether it’s labor statistics, zoning classifications, or information about transportation, water, energy, communications, land or incentive zones, the “DAFC can quickly provide you with the exact information you need,” says Bob Simmons, DAFC’s Chief Development Officer.

To help you create a short-list of sites, visit the “war room” of the Georgia Resource Center and sit in front of a wall-size viewing screen that displays critical information with overlays of land, infrastructure, workforce and tax incentives perfect for your business. The GRC has the capability to project a building onto a piece of land for your examination prior to visiting the site. Before you land in Georgia, the GRC is able to produce your site selection short list based on data you supplied that was plugged into the GRC site database. The DAFC also provides assistance locating land and available buildings and walking you through the permitting processes.

Financing and Tax Incentives
From industrial revenue bonds and tax credits to worker training and opportunity zones, the DAFC can help reduce your financial legwork as you conduct your site search.

•Revenue Bonds — You’ll have access to a variety of tax-exempt and taxable revenue bonds, including tax incentive bonds, with DAFC helping you through the process. Whether you are involved in a corporate or nonprofit site search, such as for a school or hospital, the DAFC can help.

•Georgia Development Capital Fund — Specific, qualified census tracts within South Fulton County are eligible for the federal New Market Tax Credit (NMTC). The purpose of the program is to attract resources and businesses to areas that have historically had difficulty finding capital. Through Community Development Entities, such as the Georgia Development Capital Fund, qualified businesses can access below-market rate capital. NMTC investments can be used for property acquisition, new construction and rehabilitation of real estate. The New Market Tax Credit can be combined with tax-exempt or taxable bonds, with the DAFC acting as a conduit issuer of the bonds.

“The New Market Tax Credit is a great way to help select projects fill a funding gap,” explains Marva Bryan, the DAFC’s Chief Financial Officer and Business Development Associate. “We can work with qualifying businesses to use the New Market Tax Credit to complete their financing stack.”

•Opportunity Zones — South Fulton County has a number of Opportunity Zones that offer tax-friendly job tax credits of up to $3,500 per worker against state income and withholding taxes. New and existing businesses can qualify by creating as few as two new jobs.

World-Class Equestrian Events at Bouckaert Farm

Written by admin. Posted in Government

If you’ve ever wanted to watch world-class horse competitions, you’re only a short distance away from easy access to one of the country’s finest equestrian facilities when you’re in South Fulton County. Fairburn, Georgia, is home to world-class horse trials, including eventing — the Olympic equestrian activities of dressage, show jumping and cross-country galloping — at Chattahoochee Hills Eventing.

Open to the public, these events take place on the Bouckaert horse farm and feature some of the world’s best equestrians, including Olympic hopefuls and champions, and the region’s best amateur riders.

The 8,000-acre facility offers a year-round calendar of hunter/jumper, sport horse and eventing competitions. Volunteers are encouraged to come help welcome the national and international competitors.

Located only 15 miles west of Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport, the farm’s layout gives you an up close view of riders and trainers as they groom and take them through the dressage test, gallop the cross-country phase, and ultimately the show jumping test for coveted points toward a berth in national competitions and a possible spot on the U.S. Olympic team.

The eventing competitions occur over the course of a weekend, starting with dressage, which is a training test that demonstrates to judges how well a rider and their horse work in precision and harmony. “The practice began as a method of testing British cavalry horses,” explains Hugh Lochore, Bouckaert Farm’s eventing course designer. “Dressage is about being in partnership with your horse. The riders walk, trot and cantor in a series of designed movements to show the agility and the suppleness of the horse and how well they work together as a unit.”

 The cross-country phase of eventing is exciting and dramatic, with riders and horses galloping and jumping over as many as 40 fixed-obstacles, across a two-mile distance. The obstacles vary in dimension and complexity, and the course features long runs and difficult jumps. “This type of racing was developed to let cavalry riders show their boldness and aggressiveness going into battle,” says Lochore.

Show jumping focuses less on long-distance endurance riding and more on high-jumping combinations while continuously galloping. Show jumping displays the horse’s nimbleness and its obedience over jumps, around sharp turns and while changing directions.

Bouckaert Farm annually hosts the four-day Nutrena USEA American Eventing Championships, attracting some of the country’s top horses and riders. The events include first-class competitions, a shopping village, a kids’ corral and more.

For corporations seeking an alternative for entertaining their clients, instead of a routine golf outing, cocktail party or pro-sports skybox, consider an eventing outing. This would be a unique and upscale way of charming your clients and showcasing one of the many outstanding attractions in the South Fulton area.

“We want to show that we’ve got one of the best equestrian facilities in the country, and we encourage the public to come out and watch these beautiful horses and world-class competitors,” says Lochore. At the eventing competition held in May 2012, more than 250 competitors in eight different divisions showed their prowess during a three-day event. This particular contest was even more distinctive and exciting due to the competition between men and women — including some of the world’s best — and boys and girls in the same events.

Bouckaert Farm is located off Interstate 20 just a few minutes from Fulton Industrial Boulevard. You can learn more about Chattahoochee Hills Eventing and year-round competitions by visiting www.chatthillseventing.com.

Don’t let this hidden gem escape you for another weekend. Bring your family, friends and business clients for a day of equestrian competition. Make a plan to visit Bouckaert Farm and go for the Olympic Gold that’s right under your nose in South Fulton County.