Ecotrust subsidiary funnels $60M in federal tax credits
By Christina Williams, Sustainable Business Oregon
Sustainable Business Oregon
Ecotrust CDE LLC, a for-profit community development subsidiary of the Portland-based nonprofit Ecotrust, announced Wednesday that it allocated more than $60 million in New Markets Tax Credits in 2010 to Northwest businesses that are creating "green" jobs in rural areas.
Ecotrust calculates that more than 300 jobs were created as a result of the investments enabled by tax credits.
The New Market Tax Credit program was renewed by Congress as part of the tax cut deal struck by President Barack Obama and signed into law last week. The program, which has proved a valuable tool for renewable energy projects, will be extended at $3.5 billion per year for two years.
The program is administered by the Community Development Financial Institution Fund, a division of the U.S. Treasury.
Here's how it works: The tax credit aims to stimulate development in underserved communities by allowing taxpayers to receive a credit against federal income taxes for making equity investments in community development entities such as Ecotrust CDE. In turn, Ecotrust CDE makse investments in qualifying businesses.
In 2010, those investments included:
• NewWood Corp., which is reopening a manufacturing plant in Elma, Wash., for making a plastic-wood composite material. The plant will employ about 150 people
• Ochoco Lumber Company, which used the proceeds to refinance debt, expand sawmill operations, and construct a new pellet mill at the Malheur Lumber Company site in John Day.
• ZeaChem Inc., which is building a $40 million pilot facility in Boardman, to convert wood waste into ethyl acetate to produce products such as ethanol.
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