Bill proposing tax credits for historic building preservation passes state Senate

SAN DIEGO — Sen. Toni Atkins, D-San Diego, announced Thursday that her bill to offer tax credits for the preservation and rehabilitation of historic buildings throughout the state is now on the governor’s desk.

SB 451 was approved Wednesday by the state Senate by a 40-0 vote after sailing through the Assembly on a 77-0 vote on Tuesday.

Gov. Gavin Newsom has until Oct. 13 to sign the bill, which  would offer a tax credit of 20-25% to cover rehabilitation costs if the historic structure or building meets certain criteria like the inclusion of affordable housing or if it is part of a military base reuse authority.

The property must also be on the National Register of Historic Places or the California Register of Historical Resources.

“Tax credits for the preservation and rehabilitation of historic buildings will increase construction and building industry job creation, increase property tax revenues through higher property values and lead to higher local tax revenues through sales tax and heritage tourism,” Atkins said. “The tax credit SB 451 provides will be a much-needed spark to reinvigorate investment in our communities.”

According to Atkins, one-third of similar credits in other states are paid back during a project’s construction and prior to the issuance of any tax credit. In total, 35 other states offer similar tax credits and incentives for historical preservation.

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