Economic Incentives

Lincoln County, N.C.

Lincoln County’s economy is improving. Unemployment is down and incomes are up. But, that prosperity also means less state money can go toward luring new jobs. WFAE’s Duncan McFadyen explains.

Cabarrus County Bows Out Of 'Incentives Game'

Oct 31, 2013

Elected officials across the country will tell you they dislike the practice of handing out economic incentives to lure businesses to their communities. But they hold their noses and do it anyway, because "that's the way things work."

Well, officials in Cabarrus County have made the risky decision of saying "No more."

Department of Energy

Cleveland County commissioners took a bit of an unusual vote Tuesday night at a public hearing. The commission approved tax incentives to lure a new business to Shelby—that part’s pretty standard. The strange part is that they don’t know what the business does.

Commissioners and documents just refer to the company as Project Gnome. Even commission chairman Ronald Hawkins doesn’t know the identity.

“I prefer not to know the details about the project, other than that there will be jobs [and] they will be good jobs,” Hawkins says.

Were Chiquita's Bananas Good For Charlotte?

May 21, 2013
Tanner Latham

Chiquita will hold its annual shareholders meeting in Charlotte for the first time Thursday.  It's a sign the company's relocation from Cincinnati is complete – and it's an opportunity to take a look at what Charlotte taxpayers got for the generous tax incentives they gave Chiquita.

Julie Rose

Most of the Charlotte City Council's debate and deliberations about spending tax dollars on a renovation of Panthers' Stadium happened behind closed doors. That's pretty common when a city is hashing out economic incentives.  But this case stands out because the Panthers were given unprecedented access to the council's process.


Iron Man 3 – one of the most expensive films to ever come out of North Carolina – hit theaters Friday. It received $20 million in state incentives and lawmakers are now debating a bill that would remove the state's film tax credit – the same credit that brought the Iron Man 3 production to the state.

Outlet Mall Developers Seek Tax Incentives

Feb 18, 2013

Developers of a proposed outlet mall in southwest Charlotte want the city and county to pitch in up to $6 million for streets and utilities.  The request goes before the city council Monday night and will be in the Mecklenburg County Commission's hands Tuesday. WFAE's Julie Rose explains:

The city and county are increasingly being hit up by developers for what's called a "tax increment grant."

Charlotte Aims To Do Business With Local Startups

Nov 12, 2012

Charlotte has a reputation for fostering big business. Monday night the city council will vote on a plan to encourage the little guys - what it calls "High Growth Entrepreneurs."

Any small business with the potential to grow quickly fits the category – it could be a hot local restaurant starting to franchise, or a start-up with technology borne of a program at UNC Charlotte. 

Julie Rose

The new CEO charged with restoring Chiquita's profits is on the job now and busy introducing himself to the company's 20,000 employees.

Just before speaking with WFAE, he met with an auditorium full of Chiquita employees clad in blue and yellow shirts. Lonergan was impressed.

"That's a really interesting thing for me, because I came here because I have passion for the legacy of this brand and the future potential that it has," says Lonergan. "I also came here because every person I met wears that passion on their sleeve, literally."