Mayor Leirion Gaylor Baird today announced a new affordable housing initiative that would provide home buyers in some areas of Lincoln with a $5,000 tax credit. The new tool is available because of the passage of LB86 in the Nebraska Legislature earlier this year and the work of the City's Urban Development Department.
The new law takes effect January 1 and allows cities to designate certain areas as "extremely blighted." Those buying a home for owner occupancy in one of these areas will qualify for a one-time $5,000 credit on their State income tax.
"Maintaining and increasing the supply of safe, quality affordable housing is essential for Lincoln families as our City continues to grow," said Mayor Gaylor Baird. "The tax credit is a huge benefit to those looking to make the step into homeownership. That kind of social investment into neighborhoods is a key part of our revitalization strategies."
To qualify as extremely blighted, an area must meet three criteria:
Mayor Gaylor Baird thanked the City's Urban Development Department for conducting the required study and determining the areas that meet the criteria. The eligible areas and the study are available at urban.lincoln.ne.gov (listed under "new").
Mayor Gaylor Baird said the new tools are going into effect at the same time as the community is developing its Affordable Housing Action Plan. The plan is being developed with the help of a national consultant in partnership with neighborhoods, nonprofits and the private sector.
"Lincoln is a wonderful place to call home, and our administration is serious about providing the tools and resources to keep it that way," she said. "This is another great example of City and State government working with community partners to keep Lincoln a great and affordable place to live."
The Lincoln-Lancaster County Planning Commission will consider the plan at its regular meeting that begins at 1 p.m. Wednesday December 4. The Commission's recommendation will go to the City Council, which is expected to have a public hearing on the plan at its meeting that begins at 3 p.m. Monday, January 13. Both bodies meet in the City Council Chambers, first floor of the County-City Building, 555 S. 10th Street.