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Jax Daily Record Tuesday, May 12, 202011:34 AM EST

Code-named Project Cyclone seeks incentives to add 475 jobs

International transportation and logistics company asking for $500,000.
by: Mike Mendenhall Staff Writer

An international transportation and logistics company is seeking $500,000 in state and city tax incentives to expand its Jacksonville operation by 475 jobs. 

Code-named Project Cyclone plans to create 100 full-time jobs by year-end 2021 with an average annual wage of $60,000 a year plus benefits, according to a proposed economic development agreement between the city and company.

Cyclone will maintain 168 existing jobs in Jacksonville and make a $10.1 million capital investment in building renovation and equipment purchases for office space at a to-be-determined location.

Cyclone is requesting public funding from Florida’s Qualified Target Industry Tax Refund Program for the 100 jobs. A legislative fact sheet drafted by the city Department of Economic Development states the proposed QTI award is $5,000 per job.

The city would pay 20% of the QTI tax refund up to $100,000 at $1,000 per job. The state would pay the remaining $400,000 at $4,000 per job. 

City economic development documents say Cyclone also would create an additional 375 full-time jobs at lower wage levels that do not qualify for the QTI program.

The program requires a business to create at least 10 new full-time jobs paying equal to or exceeding 115% of the state’s annual average wage of $41,516.

City Council President Scott Wilson plans to introduce Resolution 2020-0259, which includes the Cyclone agreement, as an addendum to the May 12 Council agenda. The bill will be introduced at the request of Mayor Lenny Curry. 

The fact sheet states Cyclone is considering “a few” other cities for the proposed expansion and the incentives are a material factor in its decision whether to expand in Jacksonville.

If the agreement is approved, Cyclone will create 50 of the QTI qualifying jobs by Dec. 31 and the remaining 50 by Dec. 31, 2021.

A job creation schedule for the 375 job lower-wage positions is not included in the agreement. 

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