Because it is a special-purpose district and not a city, The Woodlands Township must follow Montgomery County in considering tax abatement applications, and it must adopt the same guidelines and criteria as the county, officials said at the meeting. The county readopted its revised policy March 30, according to information from the township meeting agenda.
Changes to the language in the county version of the resolution include language stating the county’s goals in allowing tax abatements.
“Montgomery County adopts these guidelines to provide incentives for businesses to invest in Montgomery County,” the resolution states. "Montgomery County intends to be competitive in attracting businesses to locate, relocate and/or consolidate their facilities within the County without detrimentally affecting existing enterprises.”
The township can consider abatement agreements after a county agreement has been approved. It is not obligated to do so, township attorney Robin Cross said.
“We come second; a bridesmaid, not a bride,” Cross said. “We have to wait until the county adopts, and on entering into an agreement we come second; they must do it first.”
Tax abatements also came up at county Commissioners Court meetings in March because ExxonMobil, which has buildings in Hughes Landing in The Woodlands, appeared poised to have to pay $4 million for failure to comply with the terms of the agreement. However, the company had 30 days to cure the default, which had to do with the number of employees at the facility.