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The Oprah Effect

The Colorado General Assembly seems to want to hand out tax credits the way Oprah hands out cars. One big difference, though, is that Oprah's spending her own money while tax credits spend everyone’s money.

Ritter shares out budget pain, lifts business tax exemptions

DENVER-- Gov. Bill Ritter signed nine pieces of controversial legislation into law Wednesday that suspended or eliminated tax breaks for businesses. Ritter is attempting to balance a state budget billions in the red due to recession-era declining tax revenues. The bills he signed Wednesday drew sharp protest from Republican lawmakers who said they were bad for business and recommended additional program cuts on top of the historic cuts already made in the last year. The tax bills will generate $15.6 million in revenue this fiscal year and $132.6 million next fiscal year.

Program for first-time homebuyers ripe for abuse, housing advocates charge

When U.S. Housing and Urban Development Secretary Shaun Donovan announced last week that first-time homebuyers soon will be permitted to turn their $8,000 tax credit for purchasing a property into downpayment money, he called the development “exciting” and “a real win for everyone.” But his enthusiasm isn’t universal.