June 5, 2024

Colorado Employee Ownership Legislation Signed into Law

NCEO founder and senior staff member

Governor Jared Polis of Colorado has signed HB24-1157, a bill that provides statutory authority for the Colorado Employee Ownership Office, which Governor Polis created in 2020 through an executive order. The office provides technical assistance, coordinates with other agencies, and conducts outreach. The bill would make the office permanent and expand prior tax credits for the costs of converting to or expanding an employee ownership plan. The law provides a refundable tax credit for up to $50,000 of the costs of setting up an employee ownership plan, defined as an ESOP, employee ownership trust, worker cooperative, or equity grants or rights given directly to at least 20% of a company’s workforce where those workers hold 20% or more of the company’s fully diluted securities. Conversions to other qualified forms of employee ownership now also qualify for a credit of up to 50% of the costs, up to a maximum credit of $25,000. The law also provides a tax credit of 50% of the costs, up to a maximum credit of $25,000, for a qualified employee-owned business expanding its employee ownership stake by at least 20%.