Small Business Specialist
70 E. Kaahamanu Ave. Unit B-9
Ph: (808) 873-8247
Fax: (808) 871-9160
Monday - Friday
8:00 am - 4:30 pm
The Enterprise Zones (EZ) program
is a joint state-county effort intended to stimulate-via tax and other incentives-certain types of business activity, job preservation, and job creation in areas where they are most appropriate or most needed. Up to six zones can be designated per county.
Maui County Enterprise Zone Maps
If your business or a branch of your business is eligible and is located in an Enterprise Zone, you can reduce your state taxes and receive other county benefits for up to seven years by satisfying the EZ hiring and gross receipts requirements.
To enroll in the Enterprise Zone program, at least half of a firm's annual gross income in an EZ
must be from one or more of the following activities:
- Agricultural production or processing;
- Aviation or maritime repair or maintenance;
- Telecommunications switching and delivery systems;
- Information technology design and production;
- Medical research, clinical trails, and telemedicine;
- For-profit training programs in international business management or environmental remediation;
- Biotechnology research, development, production, or sales;
- Repair or maintenance of assisted technology equipment;
- Certain types of call centers;
- Wind energy producers.
Almost all other businesses are not
eligible, including retailers and professional services. Contractors (firms which build, maintain, or repair real estate, such as custodial, construction, painting, electrical, and plumbing firms) also cannot enroll in the EZ program.
All eligible businesses must also increase their average annual number of full-time employees. All businesses must already employ at least one full-time worker at their EZ establishment before beginning participation. (Full-time = 20 or more hours per week.) The specific requirements that must be satisfied by existing and new businesses are described as follows:
Businesses already in an EZ must increase their average annual number of full-time employees by at least 10% by the end of the first year. The average annual number of full-time employees must also increase by at least 10% annually in years 2 to 7.
- Agriculture companies are exempt from this requirement
Businesses that start up in or move to an EZ must:
- Increase their average annual number of full-time employees by at least 10% by the end of the first year.
- The average annual number of full-time employees at the end of years 2 to 7 can fluctuate, but cannot be less than the number of employees required at the end of the first year. (Note: "New" businesses will be considered new throughout their seven years of eligibility.)
- Increase their gross sales year to year by 2%.
Businesses which satisfy all requirements will qualify for the following state tax benefits for up to seven consecutive years:
- 100% exemption from the General Excise Tax (GET) and Use Tax every year. (The GET exemption applies only to gross revenues from EZ-eligible business categories within an EZ.)
- Licensed contractors are also exempt from GET on construction done within an EZ for an EZ-qualified business.
- An 80% reduction of state income tax the first year. (This reduction goes down 10% each year for 6 more years.)
- An additional income tax reduction equal to 80% of annual Unemployment Insurance premiums the first year. (This reduction goes down 10% each year for 6 more years.)
NOTE: The two income tax reductions combined cannot exceed 100% of income tax due.
Each county will offer eligible businesses additional benefits that may include one or more of the following:
- Priority permit processing
- Zoning or building permit waivers or variances
- Property tax adjustments
- Priority consideration for federal job training or community development funds
EZ Program Information
Click here to download the EZ Program Information brochure
How to Apply
Business participation commences with the completion of application forms
to determine qualification requirements.
The application is to be submitted by mail, fax or email:
Office of Economic Development
Enterprise Zones Fax: 808-270-7995
2200 Main Street Email: Ipo Mossman
One Main Plaza, St 305
Wailuku, HI 96732
The Office of Economic Development will then coordinate with the State Office to determine eligibility and process the application
For more information visit the State of Hawaii's Department of Business, Economic Development, and Tourism