$9.1 million in New Markets Tax Credits Benefit Over 400 South Central LA Students
Los Angeles, CA - Cutting the ribbon today alongside Los Angeles Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa, U.S. Department of the Treasury's Community Development Financial Institutions Fund (CDFI Fund) Director Donna J. Gambrell attended the grand opening of the ånimo Watts Charter High School. Located near one of the poorest performing high schools in South Central Los Angeles, the ånimo Watts Charter School will be an independent college-preparatory charter school providing students with educational opportunities for success. ExED, the parent company of LA Charter School New Markets Fund provided $9.1 million in financing for the project, made possible through the CDFI Fund's New Markets Tax Credit Program.
"I am delighted to see firsthand the positive impact of the ånimo Watts Charter High School as it represents the extraordinary transformational potential of the New Markets Tax Credit Program for communities," said Director Gambrell. "This inspirational project also represents the joint efforts of many able partners committed to education and opportunity, such as ExED, Pacific Charter School Development, LA Charter School New Markets Fund, NBC Capital Impact, and the Low Income Investment Fund."
"Because of the New Markets Tax Credit Program, innovative campuses like ånimo Watts Charter High School have secured the funding they need to properly educate our kids," said Mayor Villaraigosa. "I cannot imagine a better use of these credits. I sincerely hope that the CDFI Fund continues to support these types of projects when they announce their allocations in the fall."
Situated adjacent to the 70-acre Earvin "Magic" Johnson Recreation Area, ånimo Watts Charter High School has 26 classrooms, and will serve over 400 students in grades 9 through 12 this school year. Full capacity will be reached in the 2010 school year, with 560 students in attendance. The $9.1 million in New Markets Tax Credit capital used for the ånimo Watts Charter High School helped overcome a traditional challenge charter school operators face in securing financing.
Permitting taxpayers to receive a credit against Federal income taxes for making qualified equity investments in Community Development Entities, the New Markets Tax Credit Program promotes social investment in underserved communities. The CDFI Fund has made 396 awards totaling $21 billion in New Markets Tax Credits since the program's beginning in 2002. Additionally, $3 billion of New Markets Tax Credit allocation authority was provided to the CDFI Fund through the Recovery Act this year.
For more information about the CDFI Fund, visit www.cdfifund.gov.
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