Here’s an urgent action alert from the National Trust for Historic Preservation. Contact your Representative in Congress today and ask them to support federal historic tax credits as part of tax reform legislation!
Historic Tax Credits in danger of repeal
President-Elect Trump and Speaker Ryan have prioritized moving tax reform legislation in the first one hundred days of the next Congress which begins in January. A tax reform package could move quickly through Congress by way of the budget reconciliation process, which only requires a simple majority for passage in the Senate, instead of the typically needed 60 votes to cut off debate.
Ways and Means Republican Committee members will be meeting on December 14th-15th to agree on big picture elements of tax reform with a goal to have a draft bill to review in early January. We expect tax reform legislation will follow Speaker Ryan’s “A Better Way” blueprint, released earlier this year. This document recommends eliminating tax credits and deductions, which would include the Historic Tax Credit (HTC), the New Markets Tax Credit (NMTC) and the Low Income Housing Tax Credit (LIHTC).
The Historic Tax Credit is in grave danger of elimination in tax reform. Historic Tax Credit advocacy is urgently needed, both in the near term and throughout 2017. The Historic Tax Credit (HTC) is the most significant federal financial commitment to historic preservation. Over the last 36 years, the credit has created 2.3 million jobs, leveraged $117 billion in investment, and rehabilitated more than 41,250 buildings — all while generating enough in federal revenue to pay for itself.
The Historic Tax Credit Coalition, National Trust for Historic Preservation, National Trust Community Investment Corporation and allied organizations are moving quickly to increase lobbying capacity. However, there is no substitute for the advocacy that you can provide at the state and local level. Your assistance is critical!
We are hopeful that if a sufficient number of Senators and Representatives convey their support for the HTC to party leadership and to members of the tax writing committees, the Historic Tax Credit can be retained as an important part of a reformed tax code.
Contact House Members of Congress ASAP: Call (during office hours) or email the offices of your Members of Congress before December 14. Ask to speak to tax staff or staff contacts you have in offices.
a. If they are on the House Ways and Means Committee, ask that they “please weigh in and explicitly state your support of the Historic Tax Credit when reviewing the draft Tax Reform Bill.” (Representative Sander Levin, representing Michigan’s 9th Congressional District, is the Ranking Member of House Ways and Means.) You can also email your Representative with this easily customizable form letter.
b. If they are off-committee, ask that they “Please contact Chairman Kevin Brady and other members of the House Ways and Means Committee to explicitly state your support of the Historic Tax Credit when reviewing draft Tax Reform Bill.”
More information and resources
Preservation Detroit will continue to advocate to save federal historic tax credits. Watch this page for updates and more ways to help. Want to get more involved in the advocacy effort? The National Trust for Historic Preservation has more action steps here.
HTC Fact Sheet and Key Points to share with legislators
Maps of Historic Tax Credits at work:
- State and Congressional District Maps with Economic Impact Data
- Interactive Mapping Tool developed by Novogradac and Company
How to contact your Member of Congress
1. Locate the name and phone number of your House Representative
2. Locate the names and phone number of your Senators
3. Alternatively, call the Capitol Switchboard at 202-225-3121 (during office hours) and asked to be connected to your Senators’ or House Member’s DC office. Once connected to the office, you should identify yourself as a constituent, and either asked to be connected with tax staff or ask for the email of tax staff to communicate your advocacy. Then follow-up on your request.