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Finance and Taxes

Profit from the low cost of doing business with us.

Change has its advantages. And more and more businesses are figuring out that South Carolina and Santee Cooper offer change in the form of an attractive tax base, relocation incentives and a host of other competitive advantages. And as the South’s largest producer of electricity, Santee Cooper will be there to power your success.

A tax base that lends itself to economic growth

  • No state property tax
  • No inventory tax
  • No local income tax
  • No wholesale tax
  • No unitary tax on worldwide profits
  • No sales tax on manufacturing machinery, industrial power or materials for finished products.


Energize your profits with these incentives.

Make a selection to see how and where you can save.

Tax-exempt and taxable Industrial Revenue Bonds (IRBs) can be issued by counties, municipalities and by Business Carolina, Inc. IRBs offer the advantage of lower rates and longer terms.

Grant programs provide government entities funds for economic development projects within their communities.

  • Santee Cooper Economic Development Investment Fund (SCEDIF): provides up to $700,000 a year to encourage economic development in areas served by South Carolina's electric cooperatives.
  • Santee Cooper Rural Economic Development Fund: supplements SCEDIF for non-cooperative served areas.
    Rural Infrastructure Fund (RIF): provides funding for infrastructure in underdeveloped communities to encourage economic growth.
  • Highway Set Aside Fund: South Carolina allocates funds to local governments for development of strategic highways for new and expanding industry.
  • Economic Development Grant Program: grants from the S.C. Department of Commerce for infrastructure improvement, industrial site acquisition and financial assistance to private enterprise.
  • Business Carolina, Inc. (BCI) & Business and Indesutry Guarantee Loan (B&I) Program: as an eligible lender of the Rural Business Service Cooperative Service, BCI can make loans up to $3 million, which are guaranteed by the USDA. Proceeds may be used for land, depreciable assets and working capital in rural areas of the state where the population is less than 25,000.
  • BCI-IRP Loan Program: manufacturing, industrial and service companies located in rural areas and towns of less than 25,000 can apply for loans up to $150,000, with a ten-year maximum term.
  • Tax-Exempt IRBs: tax-exempt IRB funding for a company's land and depreciable assets of $1 million to $10 million.
  • Taxable Bond Business Loan: funding for a company's land, depreciable assets and working capital of $3 million or more.
  • BCI Revolving Loan: short-term financing for businesses.
  • Export Trade and Finance: assistance with accessing and packaging pre-shipment and post-shipment loans funded through Eximbank and the Small Business Administration.
  • Export Working Capital Guarantee Program (EWCG): BCI administers the EWCG for firms involved in international trade. The maximum guaranteed amount is $180,000, and the maximum term is 180 days.
  • Community Development Block Loans: proceeds can be used for land, building, equipment and working capital. Maximum funding is the lesser of 40 to 85 percent of the project's cost or $25,000 per job, up to $500,000.

South Carolina's electric cooperatives offer several loan and grant programs that are provided by the Rural Business Cooperative Development Service, part of the U.S. Department of Agriculture's Rural Development mission.

  • Intermediary Relending Program: low-interest loans made available in rural communities of 25,000 or less to finance business facilities and community development projects. Maximum loan is $150,000, payable over 30 years.
  • Business and Industry Guaranteed Loan (B&I): these loans are made by a bank or other commercial lending institute and guaranteed by the USDA. Guarantees range from 80 percent up to $5 million, 70 percent up to $10 million and 60 percent up to $25 million.
  • Rural Business Enterprise Grants: grants for public organizations and non-profit corporations to acquire and develop land, building and infrastructure construction, equipment and other start-up costs.
  • Rural Economic Development Loan and Grant Program (REDLG): The purpose of this program is to promote rural economic development and job creation projects in rural areas of South Carolina through zero-interest loans and grants to Rural Utilities Service (RUS) electric and telephone utilities.
  • South Carolina Rural Development Act (RDA) License Fee Tax Credit: allows electric cooperatives and other utilities to use up to $300,000 annually of their license fee for qualifying projects as defined by the RDA. This Cooperative License Fee Tax Credit provides up to $4 million annually for investment in infrastructure for qualified projects and publicly constructed shell buildings and industrial parks.

Small Business Guaranteed Loans: SBA will guarantee loans of $2 million or less, with guarantees of 85% on loans up to $150,000 and 75-50% above. These loans are made by participating lenders and guaranteed by the SBA. Loans can be used for real estate, machinery and equipment, working capital, lines of credit, construction and many other purposes.

504 Certified Development Corporation Loans: These loans provide long-term (10 & 20 years), fixed-rate financing for fixed assets (real estate & machinery/equipment). These loans are made by several Certified Development Corporations that are licensed to do business in the state.

South Carolina has several private sector organizations that help companies to locate venture capital:

  • Azalea Capital, L.L.C. is a Greenville, South Carolina-based investment and merchant banking firm specializing in strategic financial transactions for privately-owned, middle-market firms. It directly invests in select, privately-owned firms to facilitate growth plans, management buyouts and acquisition strategies.
  • Trelys Venture Partners is a venture capital firm that serves high-growth companies located primarily in South Carolina, North Carolina, and the surrounding region. Headquartered in Columbia, S.C., Trelys focuses on early- to middle-staged financings in a variety of industry sectors.
  • The Private Investor Network is a confidential, computerized matching service that links South Carolina entrepreneurs with risk-capital investors.

South Carolina is one of only eight states in the nation to maintain the Aaa credit rating from Moody's Investors Services. This allows the state to provide tax-backed capital improvements at the most affordable rates possible.

Santee Cooper has the power to grow. By maintaining Aa-2 credit rating from Moodys Investor Services, Santee Cooper is readily able to tap the bond market in order to meet its projected generating needs.