City of Cleveland’s Incentive Package for Sherwin-Williams May Total $100 Million or More


  • Mike Mozart/Flickr CC
Cleveland Mayor Frank Jackson unveiled an incentive package late last week that includes an estimated $100 million in rebates, tax abatements and gifts for Sherwin-Williams, the paint and coatings corporate giant that has elected to keep its headquarters in Northeast Ohio.

At a press conference, Jackson noted that the incentive package was more or less what’s on offer from the city for other companies as they build or locally expand. The Sherwin incentives seem so large, he said, because they correspond to the size of the company.

The biggest chunk of the package is the now-standard 30-year non-school tax-increment financing (TIF) incentive. Through that arrangement, Sherwin will be allowed to invest what it would have paid in taxes on the increased value of the property back into the construction of their new building. The incentive, which will not affect taxes for the Cleveland schools, has an estimated value of $2 to $2.5 million per year (depending on the total value of the new downtown building). That translates to a $60 - $75 million incentive.

The City will also provide a $13.5 million construction grant — free money! — and a 50-percent income tax rebate for any new jobs created in the city. That rebate may be worth up to $11.5 million, and will be disbursed annually, based on the number of new jobs, over 15 years.

The Plain Dealer has reported that the city of Brecksville, where Sherwin intends to locate its new Research and Development facility, has also created an incentive package likely to be worth north of $100 million. The vast majority of the suburb’s package would also come from a TIF incentive. The facility will anchor a mixed-use redevelopment project at a former VA hospital campus in Brecksville. The package also reportedly includes an income tax rebate for new jobs.

These incentives are in addition to a Cuyahoga County grant worth $14 million that would reimburse Sherwin for various construction and infrastructure costs. The state of Ohio, through JobsOhio, has also offered incentives, but those remain undisclosed.

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