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Legislature approves resolution asking state to extend historic tax credit

The Erie County Legislature voted 11-0 in favor of a resolution requesting an immediate extension of the New York State historic tax credit.

The tax credit went into effect in 2010 and was re-authorized in 2013. It is set to expire at the end of 2019. It is a critical source of funding for developers in Erie County as the area continues to be revitalized. According to Preservation Buffalo Niagara, New York State has been a leader in using the federal historic credits, with over $8.5 billion dollars invested in historic projects from fiscal year 2015-2017. Over 60% of these investments are in upstate communities, with over 100 completed projects in Buffalo since 2012.

“Developers and preservation groups work tirelessly to invest in our community and we owe it to them to act quickly on an extension,” said Legislator Ed Rath. “Western New York is full of iconic architecture that has been given new life under the financial support of the tax credit. Preservation has protected many local landmarks, generated tourism and improved our quality of life.”

As noted in the resolution, developers need reassurance that they can move forward with the many rehabilitation projects across our region. Those projects may come to a halt if the tax credit is not in the foreseeable future. Well known preservation projects that have used federal and state rehabilitation tax credits in Western New York include the Guaranty Building, Foundry Lofts and Hotel at Lafayette.

“We all agree the tax credit is an important resource to our community. Without it, developers would not have been able to take on the many projects that have preserved our local history and improved our region. With each project that moves forward under the tax credit, we are also creating hundreds of jobs.  We did our part in recognizing how important this is, now it’s up to New York State to do the same,” said Minority Leader Joe Lorigo.