Colorado's enterprise zone program will be modified to permanently cap the amount of investment tax credit that may be claimed at $750,000 per year, place greater emphasis on job creation and workforce development and provide transparency in assessing the program's effectiveness, thanks to Gov. John Hickenlooper's signing of House Bill 1142 on Wednesday.
Two major business groups pulled their support from a bill to reform Colorado's enterprise-zone program Wednesday when its sponsor lowered the annual caps on investment tax credits, but Democrats on the House Finance Committee still passed House Bill 1142 on a party-line vote.
Testimony to the House Finance Committee George Awuor, policy analyst February 22, 2012
Thank you for the opportunity to speak before this committee today.
I am George Awuor, and I am a policy analyst at the Bell Policy Center. The Bell is a non-partisan, non-profit profit research and advocacy organization dedicated to making Colorado a state of opportunity for all.
We have been saying for several years that Colorado's enterprise zone program has not been effective at promoting economic growth.
In 2009, we released a review of research that showed enterprise zone tax credits resulted in minimal long-term investment and few, if any, jobs – the primary objectives when the program was established in 1987.