(1) To earn the incentives set forth in the Nebraska Advantage Rural Development Act, the taxpayer shall file an application for an agreement with the Tax Commissioner. There shall be no new applications for incentives filed under this section after December 31, 2022.
(2) The application shall contain:
(a) A written statement describing the full expected employment or type of livestock production and the investment amount for a qualified business, as described in section 77-27,189, in this state;
(b) Sufficient documents, plans, and specifications as required by the Tax Commissioner to support the plan and to define a project; and
(c) An application fee of five hundred dollars. The fee shall be remitted to the State Treasurer for credit to the Nebraska Incentives Fund. The application and all supporting information shall be confidential except for the name of the taxpayer, the location of the project, and the amounts of increased employment or investment.
(3)(a) The Tax Commissioner shall approve the application and authorize the total amount of credits expected to be earned as a result of the project if he or she is satisfied that the plan in the application defines a project that (i) meets the requirements established in section 77-27,188 and such requirements will be reached within the required time period and (ii) for projects other than livestock modernization or expansion projects, is located in an eligible county, city, or village.
(b) For applications filed in calendar year 2015, the Tax Commissioner shall not approve further applications once the expected credits from the approved projects total one million dollars. For applications filed in calendar year 2016 and each year thereafter, the Tax Commissioner shall not approve further applications from applicants described in subsection (1) of section 77-27,188 once the expected credits from approved projects from this category total one million dollars. For applications filed in calendar year 2016 and each year thereafter, the Tax Commissioner shall not approve further applications from applicants described in subsection (2) of section 77-27,188 once the expected credits from approved projects in this category total: For calendar year 2016, five hundred thousand dollars; for calendar years 2017 and 2018, seven hundred fifty thousand dollars; and for calendar year 2019 and each calendar year thereafter, one million dollars. Four hundred dollars of the application fee shall be refunded to the applicant if the application is not approved because the expected credits from approved projects exceed such amounts.
(c) Applications for benefits shall be considered separately and in the order in which they are received for the categories represented by subsections (1) and (2) of section 77-27,188.
(d) Applications shall be filed by November 1 and shall be complete by December 1 of each calendar year. Any application that is filed after November 1 or that is not complete on December 1 shall be considered to be filed during the following calendar year.
(4) After approval, the taxpayer and the Tax Commissioner shall enter into a written agreement. The taxpayer shall agree to complete the project, and the Tax Commissioner, on behalf of the State of Nebraska, shall designate the approved plans of the taxpayer as a project and, in consideration of the taxpayer's agreement, agree to allow the taxpayer to use the incentives contained in the Nebraska Advantage Rural Development Act up to the total amount that were authorized by the Tax Commissioner at the time of approval. The application, and all supporting documentation, to the extent approved, shall be considered a part of the agreement. The agreement shall state:
(a) The levels of employment and investment required by the act for the project;
(b) The time period under the act in which the required level must be met;
(c) The documentation the taxpayer will need to supply when claiming an incentive under the act;
(d) The date the application was filed; and
(e) The maximum amount of credits authorized.