Study: Historic renovation tax credit had massive impact on Alabama

- Brent Godwin

As lawmakers prepare to head to Montgomery for a session that could decide the future of the Alabama Historic Rehabilitation Tax Credit, a new study shows the tax credit has paid huge dividends for Alabama.

According to the study commissioned by the Alabama Historical Commission, the tax credit program is responsible for more than $384 million in private investment in the state since it was implemented in 2013. Projects like the renovation of the Pizitz, the Thomas Jefferson Tower and Redmont Hotel are all utilizing the credit in downtown Birmingham.

The study also shows that for every dollar of tax credit allocation the state invests in the program, $3.90 is returned over a 20-year period. The state is expected to break even on its investment of $60 million by 2019.

According to the study by Novogradac & Co., that figure was in line with the impacts generated by similar tax credits in other states.

Alabama's historic renovation tax credit program is set to expire after this year unless lawmakers extend it. This week's Cover Story will take an in-depth look at what's at stake.

The tax credit has been a catalyst for a number of multimillion-dollar renovations in downtown Birmingham, and many have said the Magic City's downtown revival could come to a screeching halt if lawmakers don't extend the credit.

The AHC, REV Birmingham, Birmingham Business Alliance and other proponents of the credit hope the study will help convince state legislators to extend the program, which is set to expire this year.

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