Momentum continues to build for HPRA, the proposed New Jersey state historic rehabilitation tax credit recently passed by the NJ Assembly (see previous post).  Sen. Barbara Buono, our prime sponsor in the Senate, has successfully gotten the bill – S659 – posted on the first relevant Senate committee’s agenda.

State Government, Tourism, Gaming & Historic Preservation Committee
Thurs., Dec. 9, 1:00 p.m.
Statehouse Annex, Committee Room 6, 1st floor (NB:  room assignments are subject to last minute changes)

Three of the five committee members are already co-sponsors (Sens. Shirley Turner (D-Trenton), Robert Gordon (D-Fair Lawn) and Anthony Bucco (R-Boonton).  Please consider making phone calls to chairman Sen. Jim Whelan (D-Atlantic City) and Sen. Thomas Goodwin (R-Hamilton Twsp.) to urge their affirmative vote.  Examples of potential projects that would benefit from the tax credit, and the jobs and economic activity that they would generate, continue to be powerful persuaders.  Personal testimony at the hearing, or letters of support addressed to the Committee chair, Sen. Whalen, are also needed.

Be aware that, again this year, the fiscal statement (the OLS estimate of what the proposed program would “cost”) is both negative and incorrect.  OLS refuses to acknowledge the overwhelming evidence from studies in many of the 31 states that already have tax credit programs showing as much as 8:1 return on investment to state treasuries.

You can find accurate fiscal impact information, detailed description of HPRA, links to the bills, reports on economic impacts as measured in 31 states having a similar credit, links to sponsors’ web pages, etc. at

Please let us know of any feedback/response to calls or other outreach.

Meanwhile, we’re looking for an op-ed in the Star Ledger soon from National Trust President Stephanie Meek.

We’ll be blogging status updates right here.


by: Stephanie Cherry-Farmer, PNJ Programs Director

Around 3:15pm this afternoon, the Historic Property Reinvestment Act (HPRA), bill A1851, was brought before the New Jersey Assembly for a floor vote. Prime Sponsor Assemblyman Reed Gusciora (D-District 15) gave eloquent testimony, after which, with no debate offered, the bill passed by a 60 – 13 vote.

The Historic Property Reinvestment Act (HPRA) would make New Jersey the 32nd state to offer a powerful historic rehabilitation tax credit to spur job creation and desperately needed economic growth. This tax credit has been proven to generate investment that vastly outweighs the amount of tax dollars given in credit, and will incentivise developers that are currently prioritizing projects in our neighboring states, almost all of which already have a state historic preservation tax credit.

PNJ is working hard to spur the NJ Senate to move companion bill S659, forward. Senator Jim Whelan’s(D- District 2) State Government, Tourism, Gaming and Historic Preservation Committee will first need to hear the legislation.  Preservation advocates and supporters of job creation and economic revitalization are urged to contact Senator Whelan, as well as Prime Sponsor Senator Barbara Buono, to encourage them to act quickly on HRPA.

Help us keep the ball rolling.

The New Jersey Assembly has scheduled a “floor vote” for the long-proposed state historic rehabilitation tax credit bill, A-1851 at 1:00 p-.m. on Mon., Nov. 22, 2010.  The Historic Property Reinvestment Act (HPRA) would make New Jersey the 32nd state to offer a powerful historic rehabilitation tax credit to spur job creation and desperately needed economic growth.

The tax credit will provide homeowners and corporations with an economic incentive to help revitalize older neighborhoods and reuse historic structures by providing a State tax credit for their rehabilitation. The credit, if established, would:

  • Allow a credit on state income or corporate business taxes of 25% of the qualified costs of a historic rehabilitation
  • Parallel federal historic preservation 20% tax credit, creating more commercial development opportunities
  • Be Useful for both residential and commercial property, developers and homeowners (combined with federal credit for income producing properties only)

The job creation and economic stimulus that the credits already established in 31 states are measurable and significant.  Click here for more information.

Advocates are urged to contact their Assembly members immediately to indicate your support for HPRA.

The New Jersey General Assembly’s Appropriations Committee yesterday reported the Historic Property Reinvestment Act (HPRA) with  two minor amendments.  This means the long sought historic tax credit bill will move forward to the floor of the Assembly.  No date for a vote has been set.  Meanwhile, the Senate has yet to take up the bill (S659).  Sen. Jim Whelan’s (Atlantic City) State Government, Tourism, Gaming and Historic Preservation Committee will first need to hear the legislation.  Preservation advocates and supporters of job creation and economic revitalization are urged to contact Sen. Whelan, as well as prime bill sponsor Sen. Barbara Buono, to urge them to move HPRA forward.

The Assembly Appropriations Committee vote:
Pou, Nellie (C) – Yes
Addiego, Dawn Marie – Abstain
Barnes, Peter J., III – Yes
Chivukula, Upendra J. – Not Voting
Conaway, Herb, Jr. – Yes
DiMaio, John – Abstain
Greenwald, Louis D. – Yes
McKeon, John F. – Yes
Peterson, Erik – Abstain
Stender, Linda – Yes
Thompson, Samuel D. – Abstain
Vainieri Huttle, Valerie – Yes


The New Jersey Assembly Appropriations Committee has announced it will hold a hearing on HPRA, A1851, the proposed state historic preservation tax credit bill, on Mon., Nov. 8 at 2 p.m. in Committee Room 11, 4th floor, Statehouse Annex, in Trenton. This is the first time in nearly 15 years of efforts to see a state tax credit enacted in New Jersey that the Appropriations Committee has considered this important legislation.

Advocates are urged to call their legislators immediately to ask them to contact their colleagues on the Appropriations Committee.  And please reach out to Committee members (listed below) directly to urge their support for this proven job creating, economic revitalization tool!

Nellie Pou (Paterson),  Chair
Ruben Ramos, Jr. (Hoboken), Vice Chair
Dawn Marie Addiego (Medford)
Peter J. Barnes (Edison)
Upendra Chivukula, Jr. (Somerset)
Herb Conaway (Delran)
John DiMaio (Hackettstown)
Louis D. Greenwald (Camden)
John F. McKeon (West Orange)
Erik Peterson (Flemington)
Linda Stender (Scotch Plains)
Samuel D. Thompson (Matawan)

Legislative contact information is available from the webpage.

For more detailed information on HPRA, go to the Preservation New Jersey webpage>>.

Guest author:  William Hoffman, Esq., CityScape Capital Group

Don’t let your historic property vanish into history! Industry professionals will explore creative financing options and tax incentives for financing your project, as well as give insight on the current historic preservation marketplace at the “Making Cents of Historic Preservation” conference on October 19th at Rutgers University in New Brunswick, New Jersey.

– Speakers will highlight the current climate for historic preservation
– Hear the latest tips on financing options and tax incentives for historic preservation
– Topics: Federal Rehabilitation Tax Credits, Easements, New Market & Renewable Energy Tax Credits
– Insider updates on the industry, State Historic Tax Credit legislation and more.
– Network with multi-state professionals

This conference will provide immediately useful information for project owners, developers, lenders and preservation professionals, including historic site managers, attorneys, architects, consultants and accountants dealing with preservation projects and related investments.  NJ CLE application pending and AIA members may earn Learning Units by submitting a self-report.

Please send email to Beth Beatty ( or call 609-524-4044 for additional information. Your $50 registration fee (students $20) includes all conference workshops and lunch. Fax completed registration forms to 856-795-9722; you may pay by check/cash at the door.

Today the New Jersey Assembly’s Environment & Solid Waste Committee voted favorably for the Historic Property Revitalization Act (HPRA), bill A1851.  Committee Vice Chair and bill Prime Sponsor Asm. Reed Gusciora (Mercer) spoke eloquently about the value of the proposed economic incentive not only for preserving and rehabilitating valued historic resources, but also for its proven track record as an economic stimulus and jobs creator.   Testimony, both written and in person before the Committee,  was presented from a number of members of the NJ Heritage Development Coalition, including Michael Calafati representing AIA-NJ; Maia Farish, Vice Chair of the NJ Historic Trust; Ron Emrich from Preservation New Jersey and Emily Wadhams, Vice-President of the National Trust for Historic Preservation.  Real estate developers, homeowners, contractors and architects also offered support and insight into the importance of the proposed tax credit as a jobs creating opportunity vital to New Jersey’s economic recovery.

The bill now awaits action by the Assembly Appropriations Committee (chair:  Asw. Nellie Pou, Passaic, (973) 247-1555) before being considered by the full Assembly.  The Senate has not yet taken up the bill as Wagering, Tourism & Historic Preservation Committee chair  Sen. Jim Whelan (Atlantic –(609)383-1388) has yet to schedule a hearing.

For more information on the proposed New Jersey historic rehab tax credit and how to Take Action, go to the PNJ website.