The Colorado Catholic Conference supports HB22-1083, Colorado Homeless Contribution Income Tax Credit, an important piece of legislation that will increase the capacity of organizations across Colorado to serve individuals who are experiencing homelessness.

HB 1083 replaces and enhances the current enterprise zone contribution tax credit that is used to support organizations that serve the homeless. It removes the current narrow focus of the enterprise zone program on job outcomes and establishes statewide eligibility for the homeless contribution tax credit.

The bill expands the applicability of the tax credit to a broader spectrum of services offered by qualifying nonprofits, supporting the full continuum of programs designed to assist the homeless population. The critical services outlined in the bill support people experiencing homelessness and, importantly, provide preventative assistance to individuals on the brink of becoming homeless. Such services can include emergency sheltering, employment assistance, homelessness prevention, outreach efforts, and supportive housing services. This bill will allow organizations to address the totality of circumstances surrounding poverty and homelessness.

As one of the largest service providers of individuals experiencing homelessness in Colorado, the Catholic Church strongly supports efforts that incentivize charitable contributions to qualifying organizations. Catholic nonprofits that serve the homeless community cover every corner of our state including Catholic Charities in all three dioceses. These organizations are on the frontlines of promoting the dignity of individuals experiencing homelessness and helping them achieve economic stability. Tax credit programs that increase charitable contributions help these and other nonprofits expand their capacity to serve the poor and homeless every day.

Organizations that serve individuals experiencing homelessness play a pivotal role in combatting poverty in our state. Whether it’s providing temporary and transitional housing, helping find permanent employment, or simply offering the dignity of a hot shower and laundry service, these organizations work to promote human dignity and serve those who are suffering.

It is encouraging to see bipartisan efforts at the state capitol that are attentive to the cry of the poor in our state. The Colorado Catholic Conference urges lawmakers to pass and enact HB22-1083.