Life Sciences and Biotech
Life Sciences is Frederick County’s largest growing cluster with international leaders such as Thermo Fisher Scientific, AstraZeneca and Lonza. Recent national and international firms include Kite Pharma with a 279,000 SF biologics manufacturing facility, Ellume’s first U.S. manufacturing facility at 180,000 SF and VaLogic’s 75,400 SF expansion. With our bio parks and fast track permitting, Frederick County has capacity to meet needs of the expanding life science cluster in both time and space. Major employers continue to grow including Fort Detrick with a $12B economic impact to the State of Maryland, Frederick Health, Leidos Biomedical and Frederick National Lab.
130+ Bio Companies • Best Business Climate • #1 Population Growth
Frederick County is the northern anchor of the DC/DC i270 Technology Corridor.
Intersected by five interstate and national highways that offer the tremendous advantage of market access and equidistant to both Washington, DC and Baltimore, MD, Frederick is a 1-hour drive to all three international airports (BWI, DCA, IAD). Baltimore Harbor, the 3rd largest seaport is also easily accesible.
Frederick County is home to one of the most highly educated and talented workforces that provides companies with unparalleled human resource capabilities. 42% of Frederick County’s population age 25 years+ has a bachelor’s degree or higher – that is the 4th highest among counties in Maryland. Maryland also ranks second in the country for its high percentage of biological scientists.
Frederick County employers can draw from a workforce of nearly three million people in neighboring counties.
Looking for talented workers? There is a variety of no-cost business services and job seeker resources from our partners at Frederick County Workforce Services.
Incentives and Taxes
Fast Track Permitting
Fast Track Permitting is an economic development tool used to expedite projects through the development process while adhering to all established standards. Applicants receive points based on criteria such as: job creation, target industry, capital investment, and average annual salaries. Approved applicants will meet with the appropriate staff to discuss project scope and details prior to plan submission.
Business Personal Property Tax
The County does not assess a business personal property tax. This can provide considerable savings in comparison to neighboring jurisdictions.
Inventory Tax Exemption
The County exempts 100% of commercial and research and development inventory from personal property tax.
Frederick County New Jobs Tax Credit
Businesses who construct or expand by at least 5,000 square feet in a priority funding area and create at least 25 full time jobs within the first two years of expansion may qualify for a New Jobs Tax Credit. An Enhanced New Jobs Tax Credit is available for businesses who expand by at least 250,000 SF at a minimum number of new jobs. These tax credits are available for new construction only. Download New Jobs Tax Credit.pdf and Download Enhanced New Jobs Tax Credit.pdf. The application can be accessed here.
The Exemption Schedule for both options is the same: 52% for the 1st and 2nd taxable year, 39% in the 3rd and 4th taxable year, 26% in the 5th and 6th taxable year and 0% for each taxable year after year 6.
Frederick County Commercial and Industrial Business Tax Credit
Businesses conducting manufacturing, fabricating, or assembling operations with a total new investment of at least $5M and at least 25 new jobs paying at least 150% of the federal minimum wage may be eligible for a 10-year real property tax credit. To download an information sheet, please click Commercial and Industrial Business Tax Credit.pdf.
State of Maryland Job Creation Tax Credit
Businesses that create a minimum number of new full-time positions may be entitled to state income tax credits of up to $3,000 per job or up to $5,000 per job in a “revitalization area.” Businesses engaged in an eligible activity must create at least 60 new full-time jobs in a 24-month period: this is reduced to 25 new jobs in a JCTC Priority Funding Area.
More Jobs for Marylanders-Manufacturing Tax Credit
Provides new and existing manufacturers with tax incentives tied to job creation for a 10-year period, including a refundable income tax credit, and encourages additional investment in new equipment through accelerated and bonus depreciation. https://open.maryland.gov/why-maryland/financial-incentives/
Maryland Research and Development Tax Credit
Maryland's Research and Development Tax Credit program provides income tax credits to businesses that invest in research and development in Maryland. https://commerce.maryland.gov/fund/programs-for-businesses/research-and-development-tax-credit
Maryland Biotechnology Investment Incentive Tax Credit
BIITC provides an investor with a refundable State income tax credit for an eligible investment in a Qualified Maryland Biotechnology Company (QMBC). The program supports investment in seed and early stage biotech companies to promote and grow the biotech industry in Maryland. https://commerce.maryland.gov/fund/programs-for-businesses/bio-tax-credit
BioFactura has its HQ and R&D manufacturing facility in Frederick’s Riverside Research Park. For over 10 years, BioFactura has been advancing life-saving medicines with programs that include biodefense drugs against smallpox and ebola, novel medicines for cancer, and low-cost/high quality biosimilars for autoimmune and infectious diseases. An expansion in 2016 is facilitating significant additional capabilities in cell line and bioprocess development as well as cGMP Phase I clinical manufacturing. BioFactura was approved for a Maryland Research and Development Tax Credit program in FY2017 and has also been prequalified for a Biotech Investment Tax Credit from the State of Maryland.