Archuleta County reassessed to an enhanced rural enterprise zone


In a update from the Colorado Office of Economic Development and International Trade, communities throughout the state were informed of their enterprise zone qualification.

Let’s take a step back first and describe what an enterprise zone means to a community. The state offers businesses or individuals a state tax credit if they invest in an enterprise zone project or EZ designated area. Start-up businesses can get credits for new hires and job training, employer-sponsored health insurance, commercial vehicle investment, vacant building rehabilitation and new employee credit for agricultural processor.

Businesses must apply for the credits before the project is started to ensure qualification. It is not retroactive. Individuals can also receive state tax credits if they contribute to a certified EZ project.

There are a number of qualified projects in Archuleta County including the Pagosa Springs Community Development Corporation (CDC), Pagosa Springs Medical Center Foundation, Seeds of Learning, the Geothermal Greenhouse Partnership and more, just to name a few. The complete list can be accessed on the state EZ website, Contributors will receive a 25 percent state credit for “cash” contributions or a 12.5 percent credit for “in kind” contributions. Check with the nonprofit you are donating to see if they are a certified EZ project.

In order to become an enhanced rural enterprise zone, the community must meet two of five criteria that the state has established. An enhanced enterprise zone community is eligible to extend a higher tax credit for new employees and the agricultural processor new employee credit.

Portions of Archuleta County have been designated as an enterprise zone for years and now qualified for this enhanced status by having a county per capita income less than 75 percent of the state average and the total nonresidential assessed value ranked in the lower half of all counties. Three counties were added to the enhanced list this year: Archuleta, Moffat and Yuma. This list is revised every two years.

The county has a plat of the designated enterprise zone areas. The Chamber and CDC also have maps of these designated areas. If you are interested in moving a business to Pagosa or you are a business that knows someone that is interested in opening or moving their business, it is important that they contact the Chamber to obtain the correct information. It is also critical that they contact the Region 9 offices to register their project in advance of building to receive the proper guidance and assistance so they can qualify for all the appropriate tax credits.

For more information about enterprise tax credits and the Enhanced Rural Enterprise Zone Program, please contact the Chamber at 264-2360 or the Region 9 offices at 247-9621.

Membership news

We kick off the new year with a good amount of renewing businesses this week. Thank you to longtime Chamber members Galles Properties, Raymond Rent-a-Nerd, Adobe Abodes and Harms Photo/Graphic Associates. Other renewing members include All Seasons Lake Lodge, Elk Peaks Consulting Group, Bookends, Southwest Garage Doors and the Pagosa Fire Protection District.

How are you working on your business this year? Let us help get you to the right referral source or sign up for a class that can help you be smarter, not work harder, in your business.