(Concord, NH) Seniors in the Monadnock region will get affordable housing, a community health center will go forward in the North Country, and at-risk youth will find afterschool services throughout Southern New Hampshire. These are just some of the projects selected to receive about $5.5 million in state Investment Tax Credits from the Community Development Finance Authority.
CDFA has announced this year 16 nonprofits will receive tax credits to use toward their capital campaigns. The selected projects were determined to have significant impact in affordable housing, economic development, or community development to their regions of the state.
The tax credits allow for more than $19.7 million in leverage for these projects.
“The CDFA Tax Credit Program is the most effective tool the state has for promoting community development while also incentivizing the private sector to invest in these efforts,” said CDFA Board Chairman Mike Long.
Grants made to these organizations are tax credits, not cash. New Hampshire companies support these selected projects by purchasing their tax credits. This allows the nonprofit to receive a donation and allows the company to get a 75% state tax credit against that contribution. The credit can be applied against the Business Profits Tax, Business Enterprise Tax, or Insurance Premium Tax.
“This is one of those classic public/private partnerships that New Hampshire is known for. By purchasing tax equity, area companies can target their investments in their communities and have a financial impact they couldn’t from donating cash alone,” said Taylor Caswell, CDFA Executive Director.
The following projects received tax credits for FY16/FY17 from CDFA:
- To help build the Center for Youth and Teen Leadership at their downtown Manchester facility, the Granite YMCA will get $525,000 in tax credits. Once completed the center would provide a safe afterschool space for up to 1,100 students, many of whom are from low- and moderate-income families.
- Tax credits in the amount of $400,000 to CATCH Neighborhood Housing for creation of administrative space on Concord’s Loudon Road. Offered at the facility will be homeownership workshops and other assistance to people of low-to-moderate-income.
- To the Bike-Walk Alliance of New Hampshire, $105,000 in tax credits for Phase II of the Salem Bike-Ped Corridor. The development of an additional .8 mile section of the project near downtown Salem and Route 28, creating both recreational opportunities and safe pedestrian passage to adjacent businesses.
- Tax credits totaling $228,125 will be given to the Boys & Girls Club of Greater Nashua to purchase three mini-buses to get members to the club house. The lack of adequate transportation is a barrier to providing service to the children, many of whom come from families of low- or moderate-income.
- MakeIT Labs will receive $312,500 in tax credits for the relocation and expansion of its community MakerSpace facility in Nashua. The building will provide equipment and workspace for small manufacturing entrepreneurs to create products for market.
- In Nashua, Girls Incorporated of New Hampshire will receive tax credits totaling $375,000 for their Fuel Her Fire program. This project will expand and upgrade their Burke Street facility, allowing them to provide more services to girls from low- and moderate-income families.
- The YMCA of Greater Nashua will receive $300,000 in tax credits for expansion and improvements to its facility in Merrimack. Planned upgrades include energy efficiency measures and a rehab of the pool and locker rooms. New jobs will be created as a result of the expansion.
- Boys & Girls Club of Souhegan Valley will receive a tax credit award of $750,000 to expand their Milford facility to include a new gym and teen center. The initiative will focus on retaining at-risk children who tend to leave the program when they become teenagers.
- The Keene East Side Senior Housing project, developed by Southwestern Community Services, will receive tax credits totaling $375,000. Proceeds will go toward major building and site improvements to Unit A of the Beaver Mill Condominium complex, which houses 30-units of affordable senior housing.
- For the development of a new business incubator in Keene, $250,000 in tax credits to the Hannah Grimes Center. The Business Center for Technology and Advanced Manufacturing will focus on manufacturing skills and promoting technology and manufacturing businesses in the area.
- The Historical Society of Cheshire County will receive tax credits totaling $312,500 to complete an expansion of the organization’s Keene facilities. Efforts will include repairs to its headquarters, rehabilitation of the museum at the Wyman Tavern, and acquiring an adjacent building to serve as a welcome center.
- A tax credit award of $375,000 to the Bethlehem Redevelopment Association to conduct upgrades to the historic Colonial Theater. Proceeds will pay for life safety and structural upgrades to the building, an economic driver in the region.
- To Cottage Hospital in Woodsville, an award of $312,500 in tax credits for work on the proposed 16,000 square foot Dr. Harry Rowe Health Center. The effort will increase access to primary care in the Upper Valley and create new jobs for medical personnel.
- The Granite United Way will receive $321,875 in tax credits for clean energy upgrades to Bridge House and Whole Village Family Resource Center in Plymouth. Guided by the Plymouth Area Renewable Energy Initiative, reduced costs for these facilities will allow the organization to apply more resources toward services for clients.
- In Moultonborough, tax credits worth $250,000 to the Castle Preservation Society’s Castle in the Clouds Fund. Restoration of this cultural and historic resource will lead to increased tourism and the transition of jobs from being seasonal to year-round.
- $287,500 in tax credits for the NH Individual Development Accounts program. This initiative, run by the NH Community Loan Fund, matches at eight-to-one the bank deposits of qualified participants so they may save for things like cars, homes, or higher education.
In addition to this year’s selected projects, these programs are also funded annually by CDFA tax credits:
- The Regional Development Corporation Capacity Fund will receive tax credits totaling $250,000. The fund, co-financed with a federal Community Development Block Grant from CDFA, will provide capital for the ten nonprofit RDCs throughout the state working to create jobs and economic opportunities for low- and moderate-income residents in their areas.
- Tax credits totaling $337,500 will be set aside for the Housing Futures Fund. This initiative will grant tax credits to nonprofit housing organizations statewide that demonstrate innovative solutions to affordable housing issues in their communities.
Among the organizations interesting in supporting this year’s tax credit projects is the New Hampshire Businesses for Social Responsibility.
“Our members are committed to the goal of improving their communities. NHBSR feels the CDFA tax credit program provides an effective way for member businesses to maximize their impact on the nonprofit efforts they want to support,” said Michelle Veasey, NHBSR executive director.
Despite the explosive growth in participation from nonprofits and financial commitments from New Hampshire businesses, the tax credit cap has not been raised since 1999. A bill to increase the cap on tax credit awards to $8 million passed unanimously on a voice vote in the State Senate, but was laid on the table in March.
“This year’s crop of applicants was among the largest and most competitive we’ve ever had. We had $14m in requests with only $5m to allocate,” said Long. “We feel as if we had more tax credits to allocate we could help more community development projects come to fruition.”
By statute, $5 million in tax credits may be awarded each fiscal year. CDFA often awards slightly more to account for any fundraising shortfalls; any investments beyond $5 million are rolled into the next fiscal year.
“CDFA is committed to providing technical and financial assistance to stimulate innovation and economic growth in every New Hampshire community. Our rigorous evaluation process assures to all those involved that these investments will have substantial impact and are fiscally responsible,” said Caswell.
CDFA, created by legislation in 1983, is a nonprofit public instrumentality of the State of New Hampshire. CDFA administers nearly $20 million in funding resources, which includes a combination of state tax credits and federal Community Development Block Grant, Neighborhood Stabilization, and Energy Reduction Funds. CDFA supports the development of vibrant and resilient communities by providing resources for community development efforts. For more information about CDFA and its programs visit www.nhcdfa.org or call 603-226-2170.