BA-15-1-Tax Free Zones To Spur Economic Development

WHEREAS western Colorado’s economy continues to lag behind that of the Denver-metro and northern Colorado communities, and

WHEREAS according to the Colorado Office of State Planning and Budget’s December, 2014 revenue forecast, regional job growth in Grand Junction was 5.3%, Pueblo was 4.0% and Colorado Springs was 6.8% compared to 11.7% statewide, and

WHEREAS western Colorado communities continue to grapple with unemployment and workforce reduction, and

WHEREAS other states like New York and Texas have taken bold action to create tax-free zones and aggressive incentives to spur economic development in distressed areas of their states, and

WHEREAS the aforementioned states have developed partnerships between institutions of higher education, start-up businesses and local governments to facilitate economic development, and

WHEREAS only businesses yielding net new jobs are eligible for incentives, meaning that there will be no erosion of the local tax base, and

WHEREAS western Colorado holds great promise for attracting targeted industries such as advanced materials and manufacturing, medical device manufacturing, aviation, food sciences & processing, machining, biotechnology, life sciences and other technology-related companies, and

WHEREAS rural Colorado does not have time to wait for studies or blue ribbon panels.

NOW, THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED that, given the state of western Colorado’s economy, CLUB 20 urges decisive leadership and bold action with respect to exploring tax-free zones and aggressive business incentives in order to spur job creation and economic development in economically-distressed areas throughout Colorado.

BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that CLUB 20 insists that local governments in said economically-distressed areas have the ability to opt-in to any program.

 

Adopted 3/27/2015