May 26, 2022

JOINT RELEASE: SIGNED! BIPARTISAN LEGISLATION TO SAVE COLORADANS MONEY ON HOUSING

New laws will extend the Colorado Affordable Tax Credit program, help transform our state’s housing infrastructure

ARVADA, CO – Governor Jared Polis today signed a pair of bipartisan bills to save Coloradans money on housing and create, modify and improve housing that families can afford.

SB22-159, sponsored by Senators Jeff Bridges, D-Greenwood Village, and Rachel Zenzinger, D-Arvada, and Representatives David Ortiz, D-Littleton, and Perry Will, R-New Castle, will invest $150 million to create the Transformational Affordable Housing Revolving Loan Program to develop and integrate housing-related infrastructure, provide gap financing for housing development projects, and preserve and rehabilitate existing affordable housing.

“Families are feeling squeezed as housing prices continue to skyrocket across our state, leaving far too many without housing options they can afford,” Bridges said. “With this new law, we’re going to make a historic investment to cut costs and make Colorado a more affordable place to live, work and raise a family. By developing more housing that is affordable to families, we can ensure that more Coloradans have a safe place to call home.”

“Today, we’re making the largest investment in affordable housing in Colorado state history – and I couldn’t be more proud of our bipartisan efforts,” Ortiz said. “Thanks to recommendations from the Affordable Housing Transformational Task Force, we’re investing $150 million to create, modify and improve Colorado’s affordable housing stock. This once-in-a-generation investment will boost the supply of affordable housing and make an affordable home a reality for so many Coloradans across our state.”

“To solve Colorado’s crisis in affordable housing, we must encourage developers and the construction industry to expand our inventory,” Zenzinger said. “The task force made this program a top priority because of the regenerative nature of the funds attached. The availability of affordable housing allows us to make progress on the solution of a myriad other problems in Colorado, and I am pleased to see it signed into law.”

SB22-159 is based on recommendations from the Affordable Housing Transformational Task Force.

Polis also signed HB22-1051, championed by Rep. Shannon Bird, D-Westminster, and House Minority Leader Hugh McKean, R-Loveland, and Senators Rachel Zenzinger, D-Arvada, and Dennis Hisey, R-Fountain, which will save Coloradans money on housing by extending the Colorado Affordable Housing Tax Credit until 2031.

“The seven-year extension to the Affordable Housing Tax Credit is critical to its success right now, because everyone involved in the production and allocation of affordable housing is looking for stability in the system,” Zenzinger said. “We can’t allow ourselves to get halfway down the road toward a solution, only to have the rug pulled from under developers, bankers and other stakeholders.”

“When it comes to affordable housing in Colorado, demand vastly exceeds supply which is why we’re extending this successful tax credit program to ensure more families have access to quality, affordable housing,” Bird said. “To date, the CHFA tax credit has directly supported the development and preservation of over 8,000 affordable homes across our state and has attracted more than $1.07 billion in private sector equity to support the state’s housing needs. This law extends the tax credit and will make housing more affordable for many more Coloradans.”

The new law will extend the tax credit program – set to expire in 2024 – for an additional 7 years, which will continue to help leverage private funds to support the development and preservation of affordable rental housing. This simple extension will result in at least $420 million in additional tax credits that can be allocated by the Colorado Housing and Finance Authority (CHFA) over the next nine years.

According to CHFA, the Colorado Affordable Housing Tax Credit has directly supported the development of 8,294 affordable rental units and allowed CHFA to support 28,267 total units using state and federal funds.

Estimates suggest the development of these units generates more than $3.6 billion in economic activity for the state and supports almost 24,000 jobs, while generating more than $1 billion in private sector equity investment in Colorado. The program is an important source of funding for constructing new affordable rental housing in communities across the state.