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Community Revitalization Program Changes Pass Committee

Posted on November 27, 2012 by nbrown

The House Commerce Committee passed HB 5926, which makes changes to the Community Revitalization Program regarding which investments are eligible investments, who may apply for program incentives, and when grants and loans can be disbursed or transferred. The League was supportive of this legislation. This program was created last year as a replacement for the Brownfield and Historic tax credits and provides up-front money to redevelopment projects in urban areas. This legislation strikes language in the definition of “eligible investment” that requires expenses to be unreimbursed or already paid for. It also allows “a person or two or more persons” to apply for the incentives. The bill would allow the applicant to apply a grant or loan disbursement as specified in the written agreement “upon satisfying a milestone” established in that agreement. Current law only allows an applicant to apply for a previously approved grant or loan “upon completion of a project” for which the grant or loan was approved.  Finally, the bill allows all or a portion of the rights or obligations of the applicant under the written [grant or loan] agreement to be assigned (transferred to another person) by the applicant to one or more assignees with prior written approval of the Strategic Fund. League members have had problems with the Community Revitalization Program and the timelines included in the approvals of projects, and had discussed with legislators language to tighten the timelines. The MEDC asked that we hold off on this, though, and we will work with them and legislators on this language when another expected bill runs early next year.

Nikki Brown is a Legislative Associate for the League handling economic development issues.  She can be reached at nbrown@mml.org or 517-908-0305.

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