Historic Preservation Missouri Legislature Public Policy

State Senator Crowell Bills Threatens Historic Tax Credits

Senate Bill 728 Wipes Out the Historic Tax Credit Legislation Passed Last Year

For Immediate Release
Contact:Eric Friedman
Coalition for Historic Preservation And Economic Development
Office: 314.367.2800 ext. 23, Cell 314.369.4702

ST. LOUIS (January 14, 2010) – Senator Jason Crowell (R-Cape Girardeau) introduced S.B. 728 which places nearly all state tax credits under the budget appropriation process which eliminates all legislative language on historic tax credits approved last year by the Missouri General Assembly. The ability for smaller historic restoration projects to not be counted against the cap has been eliminated. In addition, the application procedures for projects that ensure equity for small and large projects submitted to the Department of Economic Development will be eliminated. All tax credit programs will expire on June 30 2011 unless an allocation is made by the legislature, both chambers , for that specific year, through the appropriations process. This would not impact projects authorized or tax credits issued.
This bill pits all tax credit programs against one another to compete for a specific allocation.

Food pantry, neighborhood assistance, shelters for domestic violence victims, quality jobs, low income housing, brownfields, family farm livestock, pregnancy resource centers, youth opportunities and historic renovation tax credits are just a few of the programs that will be forced to fight for their existence each year and to fight for how much money they get each year. The financial uncertainty that would result from the passage of this bill will end historic preservation projects in cities and towns throughout Missouri, including the 30 Dream communities.

In an article in yesterday’s Southeast Missourian newspaper, Senator Crowell tried to portray these tax credits as a corporate bail-out for big business although, it is the small contractors, their employee, their suppliers and projects that will be hardest hit if the tax credit process is changed. These changes would devastate the construction industry and their suppliers in Missouri as it struggles to recover from the greatest economic challenge since the Great Depression. The Department of Economic Development shows that this program generated 4,000 jobs in one year. We know of no other program that has done that.

At the time of most serious financial and housing crisis since the Great Depression we need stability for investment in our communities and for the Historic tax credit program to continue to be the best Jobs, Housing, Green, Sustainable and Smart Development program in the country. Without that stability and predictability we will not get investments, and jobs we so desperately need in our communities across our state.

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