Historic Preservation Trust Supports State Historic Tax Credit
Contributed By: Joe Patterson
Lancaster, PA -- The only volunteer organization in Lancaster County dedicated to protecting the county’s historically significant structures supports proposed legislation that would give tax credits to property owners of commercial projects within a municipality’s designated historic district.
“Everyone likes historic preservation once it has occurred,” said Steve Dietrich, president of the Historic Preservation Trust of Lancaster County. “However, saving and restoring structures that define our community and who we are can be a complex and challenging process. A Pennsylvania tax credit would further encourage property owners to invest in restoration rather than demolition.”
Introduced by Pennsylvania State Senator Lloyd Smucker (R-13th District) as Senate Bill 1150, the proposed tax credit would be available to property owners of commercial projects only within a municipality's designated historic district and would amount to 25% credit for qualified rehabilitation expenses. The maximum tax credit for an applicant would be $500,000 for a single year.
“This measure would encourage historic preservation which leads to neighborhood revitalization, community building and economic development,” Dietrich said. “Tourism growth and job creation have resulted from historic preservation work throughout Lancaster County. Federal historic tax credits are available and other states offer tax credits for historic preservation. This is a long-overdue and welcomed initiative for Pennsylvanians. The only thing that would make Senator Smucker's proposed legislation more appealing is if it were also extended to residential properties.”
Senator Smucker’s bill is being referred to the Senate's Appropriation Committee. Once voted out of the committee, it would be set on the Senate's Calendar for final consideration.
About the Historic Preservation Trust of Lancaster County
Founded in 1966 to “stem the rapid destruction of historic properties in Lancaster County,” the Historic Preservation Trust of Lancaster County’s mission is to preserve and protect Lancaster County’s rich historic and architectural character through education, advocacy and direct action. The trust has been directly involved in preserving more than three dozen important Lancaster County landmarks and has provided advice, assistance and guidance in the protection of others. The trust is a member-supported, 501(c)3 non-profit organization located in the historic Sehner-Ellicott-von Hess House (circa 1787) at 123 North Prince Street in downtown Lancaster. Visit www.hptrust.org for additional information.
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