Tax credits aim to create affordable housing in Illinois and Nebraska

Two state legislatures in the Midwest took actions this past year to encourage private investments in affordable housing. In late 2016, Illinois Gov. Bruce Rauner signed a law (SB 2921) extending a tax-incentive program that has been in place since 2011. It provides a 50-cent tax credit for every dollar donated to a not-for-profit group that is working to create or preserve housing for low-income residents. Since its inception, Illinois officials say, the tax credit has leveraged more than $370 million in private investment and helped create or preserve over 18,000 affordable housing units.
Nebraska’s LB 884 was signed into law in April 2016.

Under the newly established program, the owners of a qualified affordable-housing project can receive a nonrefundable state tax credit for up to six years. The state credit is equal to the amount that the project is eligible to receive in federal housing tax credits.

According to the Low Income Housing Coalition, an additional 7.2 million affordable rental units are needed to meet the needs of the nation’s “extremely low income” renter households. In the Midwest, these housing shortages are most pronounced in Illinois, Indiana, Michigan and Wisconsin, the coalition found.
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Stateline Midwest: January 20174.53 MB