The Greensboro City Council continued indefinitely a new policy on granting economic incentives to attract new companies and jobs to Greensboro and to keep the companies here from leaving.

The Economic Development Incentive Policy that was on the agenda for the Tuesday, Feb. 16 City Council meeting did not have a requirement that Councilmember Sharon Hightower wanted included on the list, so the policy was continued until the legal department can formulate that policy in proper legal terminology and the council can hold a work session to discuss the proposed new policy with the Hightower amendment.

Hightower asked that a requirement be added that when a company comes to one of the Economic Impact Zones, it be required to hire 10 percent of its workforce from the two Impact Zones that are primarily in East Greensboro. 

Mayor Nancy Vaughan spoke in favor of this plan saying, “We don’t want to do all the economic incentives and have them hire people from High Point and Burlington.”

Vaughan also said, “Maybe 10 percent is not high enough.”

Hightower said, “I’d love for it to be 40 percent or 30 percent.”

Councilmember Michelle Kennedy suggested adding a “community benefits agreement.”

The new Economic Development Incentives Policy already includes minimum wage requirements and stringent Minority and Women’s Business Enterprise (MWBE) requirements.

The company seeking economic incentives must agree to use the Greensboro MWBE office to set the goals for any construction and must submit an MWBE compliance report quarterly during construction to Greensboro’s MWBE office “verifying expenditures with certified M/WBE firms towards the total MBE and WBE subcontracting expenditure goals.”