Preservation Tax Credits in Jeopardy

On Feb 26 the chairman of the House Ways and Means Committee, Rep. Dave Camp (R-MI), released a discussion draft tax reform bill that calls for the repeal of the Federal Historic Rehabilitation Tax Credit. This tax credit is perhaps the most important and successful federal financial incentive for the preservation and adaptive reuse of income-producing historic properties. The federal tax credit also leverages significant state level tax incentives; without these financial advantages many projects are not economically viable. For example, without these incentives it would not have been financially possible to restore Wright’s City National Bank and Park Inn in Mason City, Iowa.

The historic tax credit has been a crucial tool in preserving historic properties for over 30 years. The IRS has issued $21 billion in credits while generating more than $26.6 billion in direct federal tax revenue.

What can you do? Speak up for Federal Historic Rehabilitation Tax Credits! The National Trust for Historic Preservation has an easy to use template that you can use to contact your representative and tell him/her that you support the historic tax credit. Urge your representative to contact Speaker of the House John Boehner and Majority Leader Eric Cantor to communicate support for retaining the tax credit. Its repeal would eliminate an incentive that has a proven track record of revitalizing communities, creating jobs and saving our history and our architecture.

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