Recently proposed tax reform fails to include the Federal Historic Tax Credit
The Federal Rehabilitation Tax Credit, commonly referred to as the Historic Tax Credit (HTC), faces a serious threat and we need your help to save this critical program! Efforts have been made with members of the Ways and Means Committee to include the Historic Tax Credit, but committee Chairman Kevin Brady has held firm with his plan to release a bill that includes only the Low-Income Housing Tax Credit and the Research & Development Tax Credit. The tax credit was not included in the tax reform bill released in the U. S. House of Representatives on November 1 – amendments to the bill are happening now and we need to be sure this vital program is included.
The Senate released its version of the Tax Reform Bill just this week. While the HTC is retained, it is reduced from a 20% credit to a 10% credit for buildings listed in the National Register of Historic Places. The existing 10% credit, eligible for all buildings constructed prior to 1936 regardless of National Register status, is slated for repeal.
The HTC more than pays for itself, and has a proven track record of creating jobs, saving historic buildings, and revitalizing neighborhoods. The HTC is also frequently combined with the Low Income Housing Tax Credit to create much needed affordable housing. Without a federal historic tax credit, the historic fabric of Washington’s urban centers, Main Street commercial districts, and small towns across the state will be at greater risk than they already are. Urge our Washington State Congressional delegation to support retaining the Historic Tax Credit as part of the tax reform effort.
Reducing or repealing the HTC is not an option! Urgent action is needed from the nationwide preservation community to insert the Historic Tax Credit into the House bill and make sure it is included in the upcoming Senate bill.
Take Action NOW
Please submit your comments to your members of Congress using this simple online form from the National Trust for Historic Preservation.
To personalize your comments, you can review talking points about the program and learn more about the importance of the Historic Tax Credit from this video which makes the case for support. Your advocacy is needed – you can make a difference!
Or, contact House and Senate Members of Congress by calling on the phone. Call (during office hours) the offices of your Members of Congress. Ask to speak to tax staff, your staff contacts in offices or ask for email addresses of tax staff.
A suggested outline of your message:
- Introduce yourself
- Say “I have been hearing about tax reform and I wanted to check in to see how the HTC is doing. I am extremely concerned that it was not part of the proposed tax reform.”
- Explain why you value Historic Tax Credits, and that the redevelopment of historic buildings will not get done without the HTC.
- Let them know some previous and potential future HTC projects in your district (link to interactive map below)
- Ask . . . “As tax reform moves forward, will Rep./Sen. XXX vocalize support and work to protect the historic tax credit with Congressional Leadership and the tax writing committees?”
Tax Credit Maps by Congressional Districts
Historic Tax Credit Facts
- The Federal Historic Tax Credit has created more than 2.4 million jobs and leveraged $117 billion in private investment.
- The Historic Tax Credit has returned $1.25 for every $1 invested.
- In Washington alone, the Historic Tax Credit has made 28 projects possible since 2012, totaling $291 million in direct rehabilitation investment.
- The Federal Historic Tax Credit program is essential. It is often the difference between projects getting done or being stalled.