Eye on Tech . . . bringing a new sector into focus
DC is becoming an epicenter nationwide for the tech industry. According to a 2005 report conducted by the Greater Washington Initiative, the Washington area employs about 330,000 people in the tech industry, more than any major metropolitan area and more than twice the national average. Recognizing the sizeable impact this sector is having on DC’s booming economy, the Washington, DC Economic Partnership (WDCEP) entered into a collaborative relationship with the Washington DC Technology Council on February 1, 2008.
This relationship will allow WDCEP to leverage its resources with the assets of DC Tech to put a laser focus on the tech sector and help it grow to even bigger heights. Numerous tech firms are located in the area but the District wants to attract more. Talented workers want to live in the city and the District offers one of the most attractive tax incentive packages for high-tech businesses in the country through its New-E-conomy Transformation Act of 2000. A Qualified High Technology Company (QHTC) can benefit from numerous tax breaks including reduced real estate and sales and income taxes.
By adding technology to its business agenda, WDCEP hopes to promote DC as the city of choice and opportunity to grow a tech based business. Current members of DC Tech will transition into the Technology Advisory Group or ‘TAG Team’ to work closely with WDCEP on developing technology focused programs. There are also plans to convene a CEO roundtable every quarter, inviting technology CEOs from the area to discuss technology issues. In the near future, WDCEP will launch a tech incubator study to gain even deeper insight into the technology sector.