Incentives & Tax Rates




Business Incentives

The city of Lakewood’s incentives are competitive with other major municipalities. Our incentives are considered on a case-by-case basis to ensure there is clear public benefit to justify the incentive. Lakewood’s Economic Development Division can facilitate expansion and relocation incentives through the city of Lakewood. Each incentive package is tailored to best fit the project it is supporting. Criteria we look at when providing incentives include:

• Job Creation
• Capital Investment
• Public Benefit
• Removal of Blight
• Community Investment

County Level

Personal Property Tax Rebate State legislation allows counties to negotiate corporate personal property tax rebates. Jefferson County’s policy for qualifying companies is to rebate up to 50% of corporate personal property taxes for four years.

Jefferson County Economic Development Corporation is the county’s designated agent for incentive recommendations. Incentive proposals are evaluated based on the total economic impact to Jefferson County, which includes capital investment, job growth and wage levels. To qualify for a rebate, the project must fall into one of the following categories:

New Business Facility - a newly acquired, constructed or leased facility used to operate a revenue producing enterprise.
Qualified Replacement Facility - a facility in which a business has invested at least $3 million, or 300%, of the investment in the old facility.
Qualified Expansion Facility - expansion qualifies under "new business facility," and the facility isn't a "replacement facility." In addition:
Rebate Request - A company requesting a rebate must be a "primary employer," a company that sells a product or service outside the county (bringing new dollars into the county) 
Pay - average salaries of more than $33,394 (excluding top management). All incentives are considered on a case-by-case basis. The company must be in the negotiation stages of the relocation or expansion process, and an incentive package will only be considered before a company makes a final site-selection decision.

State Level

The State of Colorado offers a variety of incentives through their Office of Economic Development and International Trade.  Below are some of the incentives they offer.

Job Creation

  • Strategic Fund - This program provides a commitment for a performance-based incentive payment to qualifying companies that have created net new jobs paying above average wages or have met other requirements.
  • The Job Growth Incentive Tax Credit - This program provides a state income tax credit to businesses undertaking job creation projects that would not occur in Colorado without this program.


  • Colorado First and Existing Industry Program- Colorado First grants are for companies relocating to Colorado or existing companies undertaking a major expansion.
  • Existing Industry - These grants are designed for Colorado companies implementing new technology to remain competitive and keep jobs in Colorado. 
  • The Colorado Economic Development Commission (EDC) - The Colorado Economic Development Commission (EDC) was created to approve loans and grants from the economic development fund to public and private entities throughout the state to help existing businesses expand and new companies locate to Colorado. It also implements marketing programs to support ongoing business activities. All policy and funding decisions are made by commission members.
  • Planning and Feasibility Study Grants - This grant program is designed to provide funding to determine the feasibility of a project or to plan for a project that will be located in Colorado.
  • Bioscience Discovery Evaluation Grant Program - Aims to foster growth of the state's bioscience industry by expanding bioscience research and accelerating development of new products and services.
  • Infrastructure Assistance Program - The infrastructure program uses federal funds from the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development to construct or improve infrastructure.
  • Manufacturing Revenue Bond Program - Tax exempt Private Activity Bond financing may be available for qualified manufacturing projects. Funds can be used to finance real estate and equipment purchases.
  • Clean Energy Fund Grants - The Governor's Energy Office awards New Energy Economic Development (NEED) grants to promote emerging energy efficiency and renewable energy technologies. 

Tax Credits

  • Biotechnology Sales and Use Tax Refund - Qualified taxpayers may seek a refund every year for all Colorado sales and use taxes they paid on purchases of tangible personal property used directly and predominately in research and development of biotechnology.
  • Colorado Aircraft Manufacturer New Employee Tax Credit - Aircraft manufacturers located in a Colorado aviation development zone may qualify for a state income tax credit of $1,200 per new employee.
  • Enterprise Zones - The Enterprise Zone Program provides tax credits for private enterprise to expand and for new businesses to locate in economically distressed areas of Colorado.
  • Sales Tax Exemption on Aircraft and Aircraft Parts - The sale of a new or used aircraft to a nonresident of Colorado - for registration and primary use outside the state - is exempt from state sales tax.
  • Qualifying Therapeutic Discovery Projects - The credit is a tax benefit that targets therapeutic discovery projects. 

Venture Capital

  • Certified Capital Companies Program (CAPCO) - Goal of making venture capital funds available to new or expanding small businesses throughout the state.
  • Colorado Venture Capital Authority (VCA) - Established its first fund of approximately $25 million (Colorado Fund I), and in 2010 established a second fund of approximately $25 million (Colorado Fund II) These funds make seed- and early-stage capital investments in businesses. The minimum and maximum investment size generally ranges from $250,000 to $3.375 million.


Tax Rates


For most of Lakewood, the combined sales tax rate is 7.5%:

State of Colorado 2.9%
Jefferson County 0.5%
RTD (1.0%) + Cultural (0.1%) 1.1%
City of Lakewood* 3.0%
Total Combined Rate 7.5%

In Belmar, the combined sales tax rate is 5.5%: 

State of Colorado 2.9%
Jefferson County 0.5%
RTD (1.0%) + Cultural (0.1%) 1.1%
City of Lakewood* 1.0%
Total Combined Rate 5.5%

In Marston Park and Belleview Shores shopping centers, the combined sales tax rate is 7.93%: 

State of Colorado 2.9%
Jefferson County 0.5%
RTD (1.0%) + Cultural (0.1%) 1.1%
Southeast Jefferson County Road Tax*** 0.43% 
City of Lakewood* 3.0% 
Total Combined Rate 7.93%

*Effective January 1, 2009, food for home consumption is not subject to the city of Lakewood sales tax.

**The Lakewood City Council has passed an ordinance requiring retailers to collect city of Lakewood sales tax on candy and soft drinks in accordance with the State of Colorado’s taxation requirements established in May 2010. The approved ordinance identifies candy and soft drinks as taxable, but exempts other pre-packaged food items, no matter the serving size or place of sale. Prepared food and non-food items remain taxable. The ordinance is effective October 1, 2012. 

***Businesses in Marston Park and Belleview Shores shopping centers in southern Lakewood are also in the Southeast Jefferson County Road Improvement District and must collect an additional 0.43% for a total combined sales tax rate of 7.93%. The Southeast Jefferson County Road Improvement District tax is collected by the Colorado Department of Revenue.