This Urban Manufacturing Alliance policy brief takes an in-depth look at the Industrial Revenue Bond (IRB) Program, a federal financing tool designed to provide qualified manufacturing projects with access to tax-exempt financing. Because of restrictive and somewhat outdated program requirements, there are few manufacturers who are eligible to finance their projects through this tool. In particular, the program seems ill suited to the financing needs of the growing sub-segment of small urban manufacturers (SUMs). This policy brief describes the IRB Program’s goals, explain how it works, reviews its historic usage and its relevance in light of ongoing growth in urban manufacturing. In conclusion, changes are proposed that can make IRBs more accessible and attractive to SUMs, and thereby advance city, state and federal efforts to create family-supportive manufacturing jobs.
Pratt Center is proud to be a founding member of the Urban Manufacturing Alliance.