Denver, CO – Congressman Jared Polis authored the bill in Congress to repeal the federal tax cuts, which include a little-known provision called Opportunity Zones.
The Tax Cuts and Jobs Act directed all 50 states to designate Opportunity Zones in struggling communities to help spur economic development. Colorado now has 126 Opportunity Zones and a majority of these zones are in rural Colorado.
Opportunity Zones are designed to help distressed communities—many of which are in rural Colorado—and Congressman Polis is currently trying to eliminate these designations.
“We owe it to distressed communities in urban and rural Colorado to do everything possible to help them achieve economic growth,” said Walker. “It is unconscionable to me that Congressman Polis is actively trying to take away an initiative that is helping struggling communities, particularly in rural Colorado. If Congressman Polis does not want to help rural Colorado succeed economically, then he should not be running for governor.”
Governor Hickenlooper has even praised the Opportunity Zones, saying, “Colorado’s Opportunity Zones can help create momentum in communities that need a little boost in their economic recovery efforts. We owe it to these areas of the state to take advantage of every potential incentive.”
According to Governor Hickenlooper’s office, Opportunity Zones will help by:
- Promoting economic vitality in parts of the state that have not shared in the general prosperity over the past few years
- Funding the development of workforce and affordable housing in areas with escalating prices and inventory shortages
- Funding new infrastructure to support population and economic growth
- Investing in startup businesses that have potential for rapid increases in scale and the ability to “export” outside the state of Colorado
- Upgrading the capability of existing underutilized assets through capital improvement investments