State Rehabilitation Tax Credits
Research has found that an effective state program leverages the use of the federal historic tax credit. For example, Missouri's state tax credit doubled the usage of the federal incentive when it was put into place. To further support the federal historic tax credit, it is essential to also advocate to protect, expand, and gain tax incentives at the state level.
To spur more private investment in older neighborhoods, 31 states have adopted laws creating credits against state taxes to provide incentives for the appropriate rehabilitation of historic buildings. (See map above.) Well-crafted state historic tax credit programs, such as those in Minnesota, North Carolina, and Virginia, increase the number of federal rehabilitation projects.
State Advocacy Campaigns
State Tax Credits for Historic Preservation: A Public Policy Report. This policy tool was produced by the National Trust for Historic Preservation and written by Harry K. Schwartz. You can use it in two ways: hand it out to your legislators, and use it to compare your state program to others.
- The National Trust Policy Fellow, Shawn Kravich, used the Rutgers University Preservation Economic Impact Model on three deteriorating historic buildings across New Jersey to show the economic benefits that would be generated by such a tax credit program.
- On April 1, 2010, Minnesota became the 29th state in the country to offer a state rehabilitation tax credit to incentivize historic preservation. This case study, prepared by the National Trust Community Investment Corporation, examines this important win.
Other Types of Tools To Help Reach Advocates
- In Cincinnati, five buildings were renovated into the Parvis Lofts thanks to Ohio's historic preservation tax credit program. A study of the program conducted by Cleveland State University found that for every $1 million dollars spent on this incentive, over $8 million in construction spending occurs and 80 construction-related jobs are created. Studies of other states' programs have found similar job creation results.
- Heritage Ohio offered a series of workshops to encourage the program’s use across the state. The map they created helps legislators understand the program’s breadth.
- Preservation New Jersey's website allows advocates to share their own stories about how a rehab tax credit will benefit their community.
- Iowa advocates created a brochure describing the many benefits of expanding their program.
The reports below quantify the numbers of direct jobs and other substantial economic impacts created through state tax incentives. They also show how the rehabilitation of historic buildings starts to pay back the state’s investment immediately through taxes on construction jobs and materials.
- Colorado (2012)
- Connecticut (2011)
- Delaware (2010)
- Hawaii (2007) Note: Hawaii doesn't have a credit, but Historic Hawaii researched how a tax credit would help preserve the state's heritage.
- Kansas (2010)
- Maine (2011)
- Maryland (2009) and summary (2009)
- Massachusetts (2009), summary, update (2011), and Urban Land Institute report
- Minnesota (2011)
- Missouri (2010) and Missouri’s Rutgers University (2002)
- North Carolina (2008) and appendix (2008)
- Oklahoma (2009)
- Ohio (2010) and Cleveland State University report (2011)
- Pennsylvania (2011) and Young Preservationists of Pittsburgh projected benefits (2010)
- Rhode Island (2007)
- Virginia (2008)