WASHINGTON, April 24 – Sens. Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) and Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) and Rep. Peter Welch (D-Vt.) announced today that Vermont Rural Ventures will receive $40 million in federal tax credits to spur economic development projects throughout the state.
The New Markets Tax Credit Program was established by Congress in 2000 to spur investment of private capital in economic development projects in communities with high poverty and high unemployment. The program is administered by the U.S. Treasury Department. Under the program, investors receive tax credits against their federal income tax returns in exchange for making equity investments in eligible economic development projects.
Vermont Rural Ventures, a subsidiary of Housing Vermont, has received two previous awards of $30 million and $35 million. The funds have been used to finance improvements and expansion of Weidmann Electrical Technologies in St. Johnsbury, Laraway Youth and Family Services’ new building and programs in Johnson, DEW's construction of the CCV building in Rutland, Enosburg Health Center construction, expansion of the Commonwealth Dairy facility in Brattleboro, and Barre City Center, which is currently under construction.
Leahy, Sanders and Welch supported Vermont Rural Ventures’ bid for the tax credits, including a letter of support.
In a joint statement, Leahy, Sanders and Welch said: “This will leverage private investments in bricks-and-mortar growth in Vermont’s economy. It will make it possible to create jobs for Vermonters and to support long-term economic recovery and growth where help is needed the most.”
Nancy Owens, president of Housing Vermont, said: "It's gratifying to receive a $40 million allocation to continue our community development work. New Market Tax Credits are a flexible tool which supports job growth and services in low income areas of the state. The NMTC program expanded in 2008 under stimulus legislation pushed strongly by Senator Leahy, and supported by Senator Sanders and Congressman Welch. As a result of that legislation, we received our first allocation and subsequently expanded the use of this federal program in Vermont."