Dear Congress: Gutting the Historic Tax Credit is bad for our communities and our businesses

December 7, 2017 by Ellis Guiles

The two versions of the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act that recently passed in the House and Senate contain much that’s not to like. One specific item that will have negative consequences for all of us who have the privilege of working on historic buildings is a change to how historic tax credits (put in place by the Reagan Administration and vital to the health of America’s urban centers) can be used.  As currently written, the House bill would eliminate the Historic Tax Credit, and the Senate version would eliminate the 10% credit for pre-1936 structures and dilute the 20% credit for certified historic structures by spreading it over a five-year period. Such “reform” is quite the opposite of supporting vibrant communities and businesses.

We encourage you to reach out to your House Representative and Senators to let them know how this aspect of the proposed tax reform legislation will have significant negative consequences. We must insist our elected leaders slow down and have a responsible bipartisan conversation so that true tax reform can benefit our communities, businesses, and the many instead of the few.

For more background, we recommend Building Design+Construction’s article entitled Architects to Congress: “You’re making a terrible mistake.”