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Help Save NYS Tax Credits for Historic Rehabilitation

MAS needs your help in stopping the State Legislature from suspending, and effectively eliminating, tax credit programs that encourage the rehabilitation of historic properties in lower income neighborhoods throughout New York State. The Rehabilitation Tax Credit programs encourage the restoration of properties both listed on the State and National Register of Historic Places and located in distressed census tracts. Read below for how you can help. See the maps below.

MAS estimates that approximately 16,200 properties in New York City qualify for these credits. MAS maps outlining where these credits are applicable are included in the slideshow above.  The maps indicate in grey the lower income census tracts and in red those properties that are listed on the State and National Register of Historic Places, and show that large parts of New York City are currently eligible for the historic rehabilitation tax credits.  For a closer look, download pdfs of the city-wide map and the individual borough maps.

The 2009 Rehabilitation Tax Credit Programs took effect in January 2010, and are set to end in five years, on December 31st, 2014.  The proposed State legislation action would “temporarily” defer the rehabilitation tax credit programs for up to six years, resulting in their complete elimination. Also at risk are twenty-eight other tax credits that encourage the environmental clean-up of brownfields, stimulate affordable housing and green building development (click here for the full list).

The termination of the Rehabilitation Tax Credit programs is a lost opportunity for investment in New York City’s and the State’s distressed communities.  MAS President Vin Cipolla said: “The deferral of these tax credits undermines the revitalization of historic properties in low-income areas. These crucial initiatives should be preserved in order to create, and maintain, vital urban communities.”

The Rehabilitation Tax Credit programs not only provide an incentive for the restoration of historic properties, but they also provide community, economic development and environmental benefits in areas that need it most. The Preservation League of New York State, which was integral in advocating for the establishment and strengthening of the rehabilitation tax credits, produced an assessment of the economic benefits of these tax credit programs. The League calculated that the rehabilitation tax credits have the potential to create a $12 return on every $1 of state investment, as well as significant job creation and increased local and state tax revenue returns.

It’s not too late. Please contact your New York State Legislator by Friday and tell him or her not to suspend the New York State Rehabilitation Tax Credit programs, because they are a vital tool in revitalizing distressed communities throughout New York City and State. It is also critical to contact State Assembly Speaker Sheldon Silver’s office (212-312-1420),  State Senate President Malcolm Smith  (718-528-4290 or, and Democratic Conference Leader John L. Sampson (718-649-7653 or