Lawmakers, Community Development Leaders Celebrate NMTC 20th Anniversary as Tax Credit Extension Deadline Looms

Coalition releases report highlighting NMTC success stories and state statistics

Contact: Ayrianne Parks, [email protected], (202) 393-5225

WASHINGTON, D.C. (December 10, 2020) — Tax policy trends and plans for 2021 were the focus as the New Markets Tax Credit (NMTC) Coalition held its annual NMTC Conference yesterday. The event, held virtually for the first time, saw record attendance and featured several members of Congress, former Clinton and Obama officials and the CDFI Fund Director as keynote speakers and marked the 20th Anniversary of the law establishing the New Markets Tax Credit (NMTC). The Community Renewal Tax Relief Act was signed into law by President Bill Clinton on December 21, 2000.  

The conference also included insights from NMTC experts and featured the release of a new report, NMTC at Work in Communities Across America, featuring updated state statistics sheets on NMTC efficacy and more than 80 Tax Credit success stories.

The event kicked off with a virtual breakfast featuring Ways and Means Chairman Richard E. Neal (D-MA) discussing the importance of a permanent extension for the NMTC and the vital impact the tax credit has had on revitalizing communities. NMTC Coalition President, Yvette Ittu, followed by welcoming speakers and guests alike. The experienced NMTC practitioner and president of the Cleveland Development Advisors highlighted recent successes and looked to the future of the New Markets Tax Credit Coalition.

Keynote speakers, in addition to Chairman Neal, included Senators Ben Cardin (D-MD) and Roy Blunt (R-MO), Reps. Tom Reed (R-NY) and Terri Sewell (D-AL), Former Clinton and Obama National Economic Advisor Gene Sperling and CDFI Fund Director Jodie Harris. Panelists included congressional staff, NMTC board members and leadership, investors and economic development leaders, Treasury Department officials and legal experts. Panels held discussions on the impact of the pandemic, the pending expiration, the Community Reinvestment Act and pricing, legislative hurdles and the latest insights from the Treasury Department. A one-on-one interview with Former Assistant Secretary of the Treasury Michael Barr was led by moderator Bob Rapoza, NMTC coalition spokesman, focusing on the successful 20-year history of the New Markets Tax Credit.

“Count me, as you do now and in the future, to remain a vigorous supporter of the New Markets Tax Credit program,” said Chairman Neal. “I’m a former mayor so I know just how important revitalization is, particularly for communities in economic distress – distress that has only been exacerbated by the pandemic.”

“Vulnerable communities – during pandemics and economic downturns – suffer more than the general community itself, and it just points out the incredible importance of the New Markets Tax Credits and having them available to assist distressed communities,” said Sen. Cardin. “New Markets Tax Credits were designed to help vulnerable communities. It has had a tremendous record of success since its adoption in the early 2000s.”

“We believe in [the New Markets Tax Credit],” said Rep. Reed. “We think that it’s a great tool in the toolbox for economic development across the country. In the time of COVID-19, I have got to tell you it’s even more important now that we deploy as many levers as possible and tools in the toolbox to make sure we stand with our frontline communities.”

“As the lead sponsor of the New Markets Tax Credit Extension Act, I am fighting to expand this credit because it is so important to the economic development in underserved communities like those that exist in my Alabama district,” said Rep. Sewell. “I am a major proponent of incentivizing private investment to spur economic growth and the New Market Tax Credit does just that. We know that the credit is one of the most powerful tools we have in our toolkit to revitalize both urban and rural communities across the country that need help.”

“We’re not going to give up on our goal to make the NMTC permanent,” said Sen. Blunt. “[The NMTC] is an important tool that makes a big difference in areas that might not otherwise have development. Giving someone the opportunity to live somewhere, work somewhere or have access to a facility they wouldn’t have otherwise – these are the kind of things that happened because of the NMTC.”

The NMTC Coalition also released a new edition of the NMTC: At Work in Communities Across America. This report is released every four years to coincide with the presidential election. The 2020 report features the largest sampling of NMTC projects to date, with more than 80 profiles. The report also includes state investment maps and breakdowns of NMTC activity by state and industry. Authorized 20 years ago as part of a bipartisan effort to jump-start investment and economic growth in low-income urban neighborhoods and rural communities, through 2019, the New Markets Tax Credit delivered over $105 billion total project financing to over 6,300 businesses and projects in areas of deep distress.

“With two decades of bipartisan successes under our belt, we’re marking this 20th anniversary with a big push to increase and make the NMTC permanent.” said Bob Rapoza, NMTC Coalition spokesperson. “At a time when the economic frailty of our underserved communities has never been more apparent, we see a tremendous opportunity for our coalition to help create jobs, spread opportunity and help put America back on a solid financial footing, and we implore Congress to make it happen.”

About New Markets Tax Credit Program

The New Markets Tax Credit (NMTC) was enacted in 2000 in an effort to stimulate private investment and economic growth in low income urban neighborhoods and rural communities that lack access to the patient capital needed to support and grow businesses, create jobs, and sustain healthy local economies. Since its inception, the NMTC has generated more than one million jobs. Today due to NMTC, more than $105 billion is hard at work in underserved communities in all 50 states, the District of Columbia, and Puerto Rico. For more information, visit www.NMTCCoalition.org.

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