A new economic impact study released Wednesday shows that the Nebraska Historic Tax Credit generated more than $120 million in economic activity and 1,635 full-time jobs in 2015, its inaugural year.
The Nebraska State Historical Society, which administers the program, asked the Bureau of Business Research at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln to assess the first year projects that used tax credits created by the Nebraska Job Creation and Mainstreet Revitalization Act. Commercial and residential rehabilitation projects using the credits were completed in Omaha and Norfolk in 2015.
Additional key findings of the study include $53.4 million in wages for Nebraska workers and $69.8 million added to the state’s gross state product. And even though the projects involved income tax credits, they contributed $5.1 million in state and local taxes.
“The figures provide strong evidence that the NHTC has already had a number of positive impacts on the Nebraska economy. The program is likely to continue to have significant impacts as developers take advantage of tax credits in coming years and as more and more statewide distribution of projects occurs,” co-authors Mitchel Herian and Eric Thompson of the Bureau of Business Research said in a news release.
One of the biggest projects in 2015 was the rehabilitation of the Burlington Station in Omaha by the Hearst Corporation as the new home of KETV.
Other notable projects included redevelopment of the Travers Row Houses near 26th and St. Marys Avenue in Omaha and Norfolk’s stately former U.S. post office and courthouse, known as the “McMill Building.”
Spending data from 2016 and 2017 projects are not yet available.
Applications for potential tax credit projects are still being accepted by the State Historic Preservation Office for 2017. The online application is available at: www.nebraskahistory.org/histpres/nhtc.htm.