WASHINGTON, D.C. – U.S. Senator Olympia J. Snowe (R-Maine) has introduced legislation to incentivize business development in low-income and rural urban communities.  The New Markets Tax Credit Extension Act would extend the successful New Markets Tax Credit (NMTC), a program with a proven track record of promoting investment and economic growth having drawn in more than $18 billion in private-sector investment to low-income urban and rural communities nationwide.  Currently, the NMTC is scheduled to expire at the end of the year. 

“This tax credit exemplifies the impact effective public-private partnerships can have in our communities,” said Senator Snowe, the Ranking Member of the Senate Committee on Small Business and Entrepreneurship.  “The program raised $5 billion worth of private capital in 2010 alone, incentivizing development in low-income areas and bringing critical health care, grocery and manufacturing resources and facilities to significantly underserved areas.”

The NMTC provides a 39-percent federal tax credit for investments made in Community Development Entities committed to financing businesses and economic development projects, and its success has been extraordinary.  To date, more than $18 billion in private capital has been invested thanks to the credit. 

“I am pleased to see one of the most active participants in this program is Maine’s own Coastal Enterprises,” Senator Snowe said.  “From investments in state-based initiatives at the Gulf of Maine Research Institute or the Appalachian Mountain Club, Coastal Enterprises and others have facilitated innovation and job creation throughout the state of Maine with the help of this valuable program.”