CDFI Fund Joins Maine Senator Olympia Snowe and Governor John Baldacci in Celebrating Coastal Enterprises Closing $200 million in New Markets Tax Credits Investments in New England

Portland, ME -- CDFI Fund Director Kimberly A. Reed participated in a news conference with Senator Olympia Snowe and Governor John Baldacci at the Gulf Maine Research Institute to celebrate Coastal Enterprises, Inc.'s milestone of investing over $200 million of New Markets Tax Credits (NMTC) in New England, which has helped to create or retain almost 7,000 jobs. Director Reed also spoke at a press event in Millinocket, Maine, and visited some NMTC projects to see how the program is making a difference with the local, rural economy.

Full Text Remarks:
CDFI Fund Director Kimberly A. Reed
Gulf of Maine Research Institute

Thank you for that very kind introduction, Ron. It is my pleasure to be here today with Senator Olympia Snowe, Governor John Baldacci, Ron Phillips, the President of Coastal Enterprises Inc., and other distinguished guests. My name is Kimberly Reed, and I am the Director of the Department of the Treasury's Community Development Financial Institutions Fund, or CDFI Fund. I also would like to thank Senator Susan Collins, who called my office this morning and sends her regards.

Today, the U.S. Treasury Department is focused on rural America. U.S. Treasury Secretary Hank Paulson is in Montana with Senator Max Baucus, where he will discuss what it takes to keep rural areas competitive in the global economy. And, later this afternoon, I will be in Millinocket, in the beautiful Great North Woods region of Maine, to see some great examples of how our CDFI Fund's New Markets Tax Credit Program is making a difference in its local economy.

The CDFI Fund cares about creating more economic opportunity in rural areas through its programs such as the New Markets Tax Credit Program, which actively encourages investment of private capital into these areas. Through Fiscal Year 2005, New Markets Tax Credit awardees reported making over $2.9 billion of loans and investments low-income community business, including 138 projects that were located in rural areas. These 138 projects have received $309 million in New Markets Tax Credit financing.

We applaud Coastal Enterprises for their success in utilizing the New Markets Tax Credit Program to help, among other impacts, create or retain almost 7,000 jobs, including 620 jobs in Millinocket at Katahdin Forest Management and the Great Northern Paper Company. Through three separate rounds in 2003, 2004, and 2006 Coastal Enterprises has been awarded a total of $249 million of investment capacity through our New Markets Tax Credit Program almost a quarter of a billion dollars in allocations.

To date, Coastal Enterprises has completed the financing of 19 projects and utilized nearly $200 million of the New Markets Tax Credit funds, including more than $92 million of allocations that have been placed in Maine. Congratulations on reaching this milestone! And, Coastal Enterprises' success with the program has attracted total private capital investment in low-income and rural communities of over $702 million.

I have known about Coastal Enterprises for some time. Back in July 2004, when I was Senior Advisor to then-U.S. Treasury Secretary John W. Snow, I remember hearing about his trip to Portland, Maine. He toured the construction site of the Gulf of Maine Research Institute where we are today and presented Coastal Enterprises with a New Markets Tax Credit certificate. What a pleasure it is to be with you today three years later as the Director of the CDFI Fund to see this completed facility, which has the mission of supporting the fishing industry in the Gulf of Maine, and to learn about the other Coastal Enterprise projects that show the impact of the New Markets Tax Credit Program.

Again, congratulations to Coastal Enterprises on your success stories, and thank you all for being here and working to make sure that our resources are put to good use in these communities. Thank you.

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