DENVER— Today, Governor John Hickenlooper signed a bill to expand Colorado’s support for businesses in the creative industries. House Bill 1031, sponsored by Senator Joyce Foster (D-Denver), gives authority to local governments to create Creative Districts—arts-oriented business districts intended to promote local entrepreneurship. Creative industries include arts, design, publishing, architecture, research and development, software, advertising, fashion, film and music, among others.
Senator Foster offered the following comment on the passage of HB 1031 today:
“Creative enterprises make up Colorado’s fifth largest industry and generates $5 billion in economic activity in our state, annually. This bill expands on the work we have already done to consolidate government services for Colorado businesses and supports economic development throughout the state.”
HB 1031 gives authority to local governments to form Creative Districts, which will be authorized to accept economic development incentives from the Office of Economic Development and International Trade (OEDIT). Creative Districts may be used to support the redevelopment of local business districts.
In Colorado at least 186,000 jobs are associated with creative enterprises, making it the state’s fifth largest industry. A study of the impact of creative industries on Colorado’s economy found that the industry generates approximately $5 billion annually.
Colorado is already known nationwide as a leader in the creative and innovative industries. To improve support for these businesses, support job creation, and cut red tape, the legislature created the Division of Creative Industries, a consolidation of the former Council on the Arts, Office of Film, Television and Media, and Art in Public Places within OEDIT. The Division of Creative Industries exists “to capitalize on the immense potential for our creative sector to drive economic growth in Colorado.” The Division of Creative Industries will manage the administration of Creative Districts.
The Division of Creative In dustries works to:
● Increase access to funding for creative enterprises
● Expand professional development
● Stimulate support for creative enterprises by local governments