Rep. Neal seeks extension of Low Income Housing Tax Credit after mid-terms
Worcester, MA, October 27, 2022 | Angi Gonzalez, Spectrum News
With Republicans poised to possibly retake control of the U.S. House in next month’s election, Rep. Richard Neal (D-MA) is trying to get an expansion of the Low Income Housing Tax Credit added to year-end legislation.
No matter what happens in November, Neal, who is the Chairman of the House Ways and Means Committee, believes both sides of the aisle have a vested interest in bringing an expansion of the Low Income Housing Tax Credit back.
“Both parties will want to start the new year with some of these issues behind them," Neal said to Spectrum News on Thursday. "The Low Income Housing Tax Credit is responsible for generating thousands of units across the country every day, it's worked quite well.
The Low income Housing Tax Credit has been around since 1986. The program is meant to incentivize private developers to build low income housing or transform current properties into affordable housing. In 2018, Congress passed a 12.5% increase to the value of the credits.
What Neal would like to see is a renewal of the increase which expired at the end of last year. Neal told Spectrum News that move would help the economy grow while also helping address the affordable housing crisis.
"I think that the Low Income Housing Tax Credit in particular is of great credit to potential development and neighborhoods across America," Neal said. "Trying to get people into the housing market should remain a priority."
Neal also said that bringing the increase back has bipartisan support. However, there are questions about whether the tax credit would be a priority for the GOP, should they take control of one chamber or both in the mid-terms.
The cost of the program could be one of the hurdles in bringing the increase back. Renewing it could cost about $1 billion a year. According to a report from the Congressional Research Service, the cost of the tax credit was about $10 billion a year in forgone tax collections in 2021. That number was about $9 billion in 2017, before the increase was passed by Congress in 2018.
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