There are many resources available to help you turn your downtown dreams into reality. Whether you are looking for funding, training or assistance with your business plan, Downtown Partners can provide answers to your questions.
State and Federal Financial Incentives for National Register Properties
Downtown Burlington has a wealth of properties listed on the National Register of Historic Places. National Register listing is not only a way of recognizing its importance to our shared heritage — it also makes rehabilitation more economically feasible through tax credit and grant eligibility. For information on whether or not a building is on the National Register, contact the Downtown Partners office.
State Historic Tax Credit
A tax credit is available for 25 % of qualified rehab costs. Applications for projects over $750,000 are accepted for the first ten days of July. Applications for projects under $750,000 are accepted throughout the year.
Federal Historic Tax Credit
A Federal income tax credit is available for 20% of qualified costs for the substantial rehabilitation of income producing properties. The amount invested into the rehabilitation must exceed the "adjusted basis" or depreciated value of the building. This credit is in addition to the State Historic Tax Credit.
Beth Foster Hill
Tax Incentive Programs Manager/National Register Coordinator
The Historical Resource Development Program of the State Historical Society of Iowa provides for grants in the Historic Preservation category. For businesses, a 1:1 match is required, with at least 75 cents of each matching dollar in cash. For non-profits, a 50 cent match is required for each grant dollar, of which 25 cents must be in cash. For individuals, a 75 cent match per grant dollar is required, of which 50 cents must be in cash. The application deadline is mid-May. The State Historical Society of Iowa may also have "emergency grant" funding available for immediate needs.
Kristen Vander Molen
City of Burlington Tax Abatement
People improving downtown property have several attractive options in applying for an Urban Renewal Area tax exemption. For commercial property, improvements may be eligible for either:
- A three-year 100% per year exemption
- A ten-year sliding scale as follows: 80% in year 1, 70% in year 2, 60% in year 3, 50% in year 4, 40% in year 5 and 6, 30% in year 7 and 8, 20% in year 9 and 10.
For residential improvement projects in the Neighborhood Urban Renewal Area (which includes all of downtown Burlington) a special, enhanced abatement schedule has been adopted:
- A ten-year split scale: seven years 100%, 75% in year 8, 50% in year 9, and 25% in year 10
This new, aggressive tax incentive is designed to stabilize, improve, and increase residential development in the city core. It is highly beneficial to those considering downtown residential projects. For information, go to www.burlingtoniowa.org/DocumentCenter/Home/View/36