Our region is now a designated Enterprise Zone. You may be eligible for a state income tax credit!
What is the colorado enterprise zone program?
The Enterprise Zone Program creates a business friendly environment in economically distressed areas by offering incentives to businesses and projects in those areas. There are also incentives to taxpayers who donate to these areas.
State of Colorado has deemed rural broadband so important that it has designated our region an Enterprise Zone and will offer a 25% (cash) or 12.5% (in-kind) state income tax credit to landowners who sign their easement as an investment in the Community Broadband Project.
How do I get a tax credit?
Landowners - through whose land the Tri-State fiber optic cable passes - who sign their easement are eligible for a state income tax credit because they are benefiting the enterprise zone. These landowners can take a 12.5% state income tax credit based on the appraised amount of the encumbered portion of their land (where the cable runs). Any person, landowner or otherwise, looking to receive the 25% tax credit may do so through a cash donation to an Enterprise Zone project or business.
what is my tax credit amount?
There is a very specific process for appraising the encumbered portion of your land. Your county assessor has an assessed land value for your property. Your original Tri-State transmission easement states the amount of acreage that the power line encumbers. This acreage is the same for the fiber cable (since the two lines run together). A professional appraiser out of Montrose and Grand Junction, who has experience appraising values for easements, including fiber, states that because the fiber cable is additional to the power line, it is worth 10% of the value of the acreage from that original easement. Therefore, we take 10% of the value of that acreage and then 12.5% of that amount to get the tax credit number. All of these numbers are specific to your easement and your land and will be made available to you when you speak with us in person. There is an Enterprise Zone form that we will fill out for you and that you will need to sign. Our responsibility is to get you all the paperwork you need for your taxes.
How does this help my community?
Your easement contribution allows us to light up that existing fiber cable so that local students can use the internet to research their term papers and do other homework. It allows 4-H club members to connect with the 4-H community and learn and share best practices. Your contribution makes it easier for your fellow ranchers to make a living because advertising and selling livestock online reaches a broader customer base. It also allows ranchers to make sure they have a handle on market prices so they are competitive. Your doctors are able to treat you more effectively not only because there is no risk of being unable to access your medical records when weather is poor, but it also allows for consultations with specialists without having to drive hundreds of miles for an in-person visit. Additionally, hours of time and money aren't wasted simply waiting for records to load up and be accessible! Tourism can thrive because the internet allows you to reach travelers from around the world, describing to them why Nucla, Naturita, and Norwood are the best homebases during hunting and fishing seasons. Your local businesses won't have to worry about shutting down for the day when the internet is out because they can't access auto parts information or run credit cards.
The possibilities, opportunities, and benefits are endless, and they affect every single person in your community...including you!