Gov. Andrew Cuomo recently vetoed legislation that would have increased the maximum award available under the historic preservation tax credit from 20 percent of $5 million to 20 percent of $12 million.
Sponsors of the legislation, which passed the Assembly and Senate in June, said developers across the state have successfully used the tax credit to redo neglected buildings that are in dire need of repair. However, the $5 million cap is a disincentive for them to take on larger, more blighted and more expensive projects.
Cuomo said in his veto message that he shares the goal of providing incentives to rehabilitate blighted properties, but he doesn’t think such legislation should be adopted outside of the annual state budget process. The legislation would have applied to taxable years beginning on or after Jan. 1, 2012.
“This bill can act as a catalyst for the economic development of the host and surrounding communities,” he wrote in his veto. “While I am committed to expanding economic development in every region of the State, I believe that the State budget process, which commences in only a few weeks, is the better context and forum in which to review both the economic development and fiscal impact of the proposed higher cap.”
Cuomo, who delivers his annual budget proposal in January, said in the veto that he would propose initiatives in the coming fiscal year “that will benefit New Yorkers in a more productive and expansive manner.” The state’s budget year runs from April 1 to March 31.
The bill was one of the last of hundreds that were forwarded from the Legislature to the governor’s office this year. Groups of bills are sent over periodically during the year to give the governor’s staff time to review them and determine whether they should recommend they be signed or vetoed.