The comprehensive report conducted by Rutgers University analyzes the economic impact of the federal Historic Tax Credit since its inception in 1978 and concludes that the Historic Tax Credit is a highly efficient job creator compared to other stimulus options, and a catalyst for community revitalization projects. The report, the first-ever to examine the economic impact of the Historic Tax Credit, also underscores the need for additional legislation to strengthen the federal credits, encouraging their use for green and sustainable rehab projects and making them more widely available for smaller, Main Street-scale projects. The study was conducted by researchers at the Rutgers University Edward J. Bloustein School of Planning and Public Policy, and commissioned by the Historic Tax Credit Coalition, a public policy advocacy organization.
Major findings of the report include:
- The Historic Tax Credit is a job creator—the rehabilitation credit has generated about 1.8 million new jobs since 1976. Other studies have consistently shown that historic rehab projects require more highly skilled, better-paying jobs than new construction.
- The cumulative impacts to the national economy are substantial, including $198 billion in total output, $98 million towards GDP, $72 billion in income, and $29 billion in taxes (including $21 billion in federal tax receipts).
- The federal Historic Tax Credit is a strategic investment for the nation, evidenced by the fact that the total federal cost of the HTC, $16.6 billion in 2008 inflation-adjusted dollars, is more than offset by the $21 billion in federal taxes realized by HTC projects to date. In addition, the $16.6 billion investment has encouraged a five times greater amount of historic rehabilitation—a total of $85 billion.