• Cumberland Area Economic Development Corporation
  • Serving Cumberland County
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Business Incentive Programs in Pennsylvania

Cumberland Valley is the fastest growing region in Pennsylvania, and when you explore the incentives for businesses in Pennsylvania, it’s easy to see why. Not only is Cumberland County ranked the top county to live in the state, but we’re also within three hours of New York City, Washington, D.C., Baltimore, Philadelphia and Pittsburgh. Our skilled and trained residents work in a diverse, thriving economy and enjoy easy access to exceptional recreational opportunities throughout Cumberland County. Living here is affordable, too, which is why savvy business owners choose Cumberland County.

Explore the incentives that are available to your enterprise, and see why making Cumberland County your home makes good business sense.

Economic Development Incentives in Cumberland County, PA

A variety of economic development zones are designated throughout Cumberland County. These zones provide various types of incentives to qualifying businesses located within the designated areas. Four types of zones are designated in Cumberland County: Foreign Trade Zones (FTZ), SBA Historically Underutilized Business (HUB) Zones, Enterprise Zones, and Keystone Innovation Zones (KIZ).

Economic Development Zone Map


If your business is considering the rehabilitation, expansion or improvement of an existing building or land, you may be eligible to receive an Enterprise Zone tax credit. The Enterprise Zone makes launching or growing a business more affordable through a wide range of government-sponsored programs.

Enterprise Zones are contiguous multi-municipal areas that offer businesses located within the zones priority consideration for DCED grants and loan funds, eligibility for Enterprise Zone low interest financing, eligibility to apply for 20% tax credits against State Corporate Net Income Tax for the value of improvements made to business properties located in the zone, and additional priority considerations for other state programs. Cumberland County has a number of areas included in the Harrisburg Technology Corridor Enterprise Zone. The zone extends from Shippensburg to Harrisburg.


Does your business conduct commerce internationally? Learn about Foreign Trade Zone #147, a regional economic development incentive that includes Cumberland County, along with Adams, Berks, Dauphin, Franklin, Lancaster, Lebanon, Perry, and York counties. Build your business in a location that makes connecting to air, road and rail transportation more convenient, while reducing the negative economic impact of duties.

Three locations in Cumberland County are incorporated into the regional Foreign Trade Zone #147; however, any company interested in becoming an FTZ site can apply. The sites included in the zone give U.S. based companies the ability to defer, reduce or in cases eliminate Customs duties on products entering the zone. The FTZ program offers companies opportunities to remain competitive with international counterparts and reduce operating costs.

If your company is interested in applying for FTZ designation contact Central Pennsylvania’s Foreign Trade Zone. If your company is interested in entering the international market, the World Trade Center: Harrisburg provides education and expertise on expanding your client base abroad.


If your for-profit enterprise is less than eight years old and is within a targeted industry, your business may be eligible for tax credits with the Keystone Innovation Zone program. The tax credit, which can total up to $100,000 annually per company, applies to businesses located within the Zone’s geographic boundaries.

Keystone Innovation Zones are designated zones that provide targeted industry clusters in specific locations with access to tax credits, priority review for DCED funding opportunities, and partnerships with regional universities. Cumberland County’s KIZ locations are part of the larger Harrisburg Market KIZ. The Harrisburg Market KIZ focuses on three industry clusters: advanced manufacturing, life sciences and business technology solutions.

The two KIZ locations in Cumberland County are the Murata Business Center (453 Lincoln St, Carlisle PA 17013) and Business Central (18 North Hanover St, Carlisle PA 17013). These zones receive support from Dickinson College, HACC, Messiah College and others to promote innovative business development in Cumberland County.

The Keystone Innovation Zone Tax Credit Program is funded by the Pennsylvania Department of Community and Economic Development.


The HUB Zone program was developed by the SBA to assist small businesses in designated areas to have access to federal procurement opportunities. Small businesses located in HUB Zones are eligible to become designated HUB Zone Firms. These firms receive the HUB Zone benefits including: set asides, 3% government-wide prime and subcontracting goals, and 10% price evaluation preference.

HUB Zones are designated by the SBA based on low-median household incomes or high unemployment. There are five census tracts in Cumberland County that are designated HUB Zones. These tracts are located in the Carlisle and Shippensburg areas.

The HUB Zone Program is administered by the SBA.

About Cumberland County

Thirty-three boroughs and townships comprise Cumberland County, which blends rural, city and suburban living. Additionally, about 6,000 businesses operate in Cumberland County, employing over 115,000 people. The region’s unemployment rate averages about 3.4%, far lower than Pennsylvania’s rate of 4.8%. Major employers in Cumberland County include government, healthcare, retail, transportation and warehousing.

The number of jobs in the region is growing, as are median home prices and GDP. Even with our thriving economy, however, the cost of living in Cumberland County is still a small fraction of the cost of living in a big city such as New York. According to the Pennsylvania Department of Labor & Industry, south central Pennsylvania’s cost of living is 5% below the national average.

Our diverse employers and workers mean our economic outlook is forecast to be stable for years to come. This is one of the reasons why an educated workforce continues to flock to Cumberland County. Top-performing industries in Cumberland County include insurance services, real estate, business services and management and consulting. The federal government also plays a large role in our local economy, producing nearly 5% of the total economic output. But because our region is also known for its rich history and ample outdoor recreational amenities, our residents are happy to put down roots with us.

Grow Your Business in Cumberland County

If you’re looking for a place with a stable economy, a skilled workforce, affordable living and an outstanding quality of life, consider Cumberland County. We are ready to help you transition your business to the Economic Development Zone that will help your enterprise, your employees and you thrive.

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