It’s only been a few short months since I saw many of you in Las Vegas at the National Indian Housing Council (NAIHC) Legal Symposium. A lot has happened in a short time with the new political environment.
Since my last update, a few things are clearer. We now know Dr. Ben Carson is leading the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD). Congressman Ryan Zinke is leading the Department of the Interior.
There are still many unknowns. Tax reform is a priority of the Trump administration, but we don’t know when it will happen. If corporations don’t owe as many taxes as before, the demand to offset those taxes with credits goes down. If demand goes down, investors will lower their pricing, and Low Income Housing Tax Credit (LIHTC) projects will not receive as much investor equity.
We’re already seeing lower pricing, which means tribes have to find more of their own money to move projects forward. While the tax credit industry is cautiously optimistic that the LIHTC program itself will be retained and the only result will be lowered pricing from investors, we can’t take anything for granted.
Many of us will be reconvening at the NAIHC Legislative Symposium next week in Washington, DC. It is the perfect time for Indian Country to make sure its representatives in Congress know how important the bipartisan-supported Low Income Housing Tax Credit (LIHTC) program is to us all. Ask them to pass NAHASDA reauthorization and keep the New Markets Tax Credit (NMTC) program strong as well.
If you want to have access to these critical tax credits programs — at this point one of the only funding sources available for large-scale developments — make sure Congress knows. When you make visits to Capitol Hill, tell them about successful tax credit projects in your community or state (find a map here), tell them about the families who have been helped and the benefits you’ve seen in your community.
Click here to view more talking points.
We need to work together now more than ever. Look for me in DC and let me know if you have ideas. Marie Allen, project coordinator; and Trent Rogers, project coordinator, will be there as well. Contact us with any questions at firstname.lastname@example.org or 816-994-8970.