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"Start-Up Colorado:" House Democrats announce job creation package

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Colorado House Democrats and representatives from CU, CSU and Colorado Technology Association met with the press to introduce "Start-Up Colorado."

The package brings together three jobs bills focusing on promoting small business growth.

"We need to take a bottoms-up approach to economic growth, providing Colorado's entrepreneurs with much needed support and assist start-up companies to get off the ground so they can grow and put more people back to work," House minority leader Mark Ferrandino said at a press conference today.

Ferrandino and Representative Dave Young are co-sponsors of the Tech Transfer bill, targeting job creation through the acceleration of innovative research at Colorado research institutions.

"If we can help transfer these new technologies from those institutions to the private sector, there is no doubt we will create plenty of new jobs right here in Colorado," Young said.

The bill would provide up to $750,000 in federal grants -- in addition to the $1 billion already in place -- to universities and research centers administered by the Department of Economic Development and International Trade.

A second bill, sponsored by Representative Max Tyler, would provide a 25 percent to 40 percent increase in funding to Colorado's small business development centers. The fourteen SBDCs currently in Colorado assist start-up businesses with training programs and individual counseling.

Representative John Kefalas is sponsoring a third bill that would provide funding for the Colorado Innovation Investment Tax Credit -- a bill put in place in 2011, but without any funding.

"All we are doing is asking the Colorado General Assembly to fund the tax credit so that we can continue making tax credits available, targeting our resources and providing incentives for investors to invest in Colorado start-up businesses," Kefalas said. Ferrandino said the package is projected to run on $3 million to $5 million fiscal plan. Democrats are still discussing how the bills will be funded. One idea proposed: a $250,000 cap on the amount of enterprising.

"We're not getting rid of tax money that's going toward economic development," Ferrandino said. "What we're doing is repurposing it to get the best return on our investment."

For information on the House Republicans' 2012 Job Bills visit the Colorado House GOP website.

More from our Politics archive: "Mark Ferrandino on election as House minority leader, future of civil union bill."

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