Sign-on letter regarding specific provisions of the “Tax Cuts and Jobs Act”

December 8, 2017

Dear Conferees:

We, the undersigned members of the National Community Reinvestment Coalition (NCRC), are writing to urge you to adopt specific provisions included the Senate version of the “Tax Cuts and Jobs Act.” Although we have concerns overall with both versions of this bill, the Senate provisions regarding private activity bonds, the Low-Income Housing Tax Credit (LIHTC), the New Markets Tax Credit, and the Historic Tax Credit are preferable and would continue critical tax subsidies for affordable rental housing, and community and economic development projects in underserved communities. When combined with an overall declining federal budget and the strict caps imposed on non-defense discretionary spending through the annual appropriations process, the shrinking tax subsidies included in tax reform raise even greater concerns about the state of investment in the nation’s underserved communities.

These bills include several provisions that would undermine incentives in the nation’s tax code for low- and moderate-income (LMI) families to become homeowners. Homeownership remains the best vehicle for LMI families and people of color to build wealth and enter the middle class. The House version of this legislation also repeals several provisions in the tax code that help finance the development of affordable rental housing as well as other community and economic development projects.

  • On the Low-Income Housing Tax Credit and Private Activity Bonds: The House eliminates the tax exemption for private activity bonds, which are critical to the production and preservation of affordable housing across the country through the 4% LIHTC program. The Senate version modifies but retains LIHTC and preserves private activity bonds.
  • On the New Markets Tax Credit and Historic Tax Credit: The House version eliminates both the New Markets Tax Credit program and the Historic Tax Credit. Both credits are designed to encourage investments in low-income communities in the nation’s urban core and rural areas that traditionally have had poor access to debt and equity capital. The Senate version maintains the 20% Historic Tax Credit.

We have grave concerns about both bills, the automatic spending cuts to key housing programs that could be triggered as a result of tax reform and the

overall declining support in both the federal budget and the nation’s tax code for investment in LMI communities. Nonetheless, we urge the conference reconciling the differing provisions between these two bills to adopt the more favorable provisions in the Senate version regarding private activity bonds, the Low-Income Housing Tax Credit, the New Markets Tax Credit, and the Historic Tax Credit.

Sincerely,

National Community Reinvestment Coalition (NCRC)

1951

Affordable Homeownership Foundation Inc.

Baltimore Neighborhoods Inc

Baptist Ministers Conference of Cinti. & Vicinity

Beechview Area Concerned Citizens

Bloomfield-Garfield Corporation

California Coalition for Rural Housing

California Reinvestment Coalition

CASA of Oregon

City of Dayton Human Relations Council

Community Housing Fund

Consumer Action

County Corp

Detroit Shoreway Community Development Organization

Financial Justice Coalition

First World Architects Studio

Friends of the African Union

Global Network CDC

Greater New Orleans Housing Alliance

H.O.P.E. Through Divine Intervention Inc

Hamilton County Community Reinvestment Group

Harlingen CDC

Hazelwood Initiative, Inc.

Higher Self Lifestyle

HOPE of Evansville

Housing and Education

Housing Authority of the City of High Point

Housing Coalition Educators

Housing NOLA

The Institute of Minority Economic Development

J-RAB Inc

L.A Keyz Financial Services

Metropolitan St. Louis Equal Housing and Opportunity Council

Multi-Cultural Development Center

National Association of American Veterans, Inc.

National Housing Counseling Agency

National Housing Institute

Neighborhood Housing Services of South Florida

Neighborhood Housing Services of Waterbury

PathStone Enterprise Center

The Pittsburgh Project

R Pace Tax Service

Rebuild Durham Inc

The Resurrection Project

Sacramento Housing Alliance

Scott County Housing Council

Universal Housing Solutions CDC

Uptown Partners of Pittsburgh

Urban Coalition of Appraisal Professionals

Vermont Slauson Economic Development Corporation

Wesley Community Center

White Wing Educational Community Development Inc.

Wisconsin Partnership for Housing Development

Woodstock Institute

Working In Neighborhoods

 

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