Casper – August 19, 2013 – (RealEstateRama) — A newly released report shows the Low-Income Housing Tax Credit (LIHTC) helped preserve and develop more than 270,000 affordable rental units in rural communities nationwide. The National Report, “The Low-Income Housing Tax Credit: Overcoming Barriers to Affordable Housing in Rural America,” was prepared by Rapoza Associates in partnership with five members of the National Rural Housing Coalition. Since the program’s inception, in 1986, the Wyoming Community Development Authority (WCDA) has used the LIHTC program to develop over 4,000 affordable rental housing units in 22 communities.
The LIHTC is the principal tool used by rural communities to develop and preserve affordable rental housing. In The report noted that [nationally] more than 7.3 million rural families live in housing with at least one major affordability, quality, or crowding issue. Because the LIHTC is designed to give states broad discretion in administering the program, states can ensure that LIHTC investments are aligned with their rural housing needs.
In 2010, 35 states including Wyoming reported using the LIHTC to target rural housing needs. The WCDA created a set-aside to direct a portion of its LIHTC allocation to develop small, rural housing. “Rural communities in Wyoming have struggled to attract private-sector investments in housing,” According to David Haney, WCDA Executive Director. Under the program, rural communities with less than 10,000 residents that are more than 20 miles away from larger towns are prioritized. Haney reported that in 2013, 45% of the total state allocation of tax credits will benefit these communities.
“WCDA is excited to take on the challenge of developing small projects in more rural areas of Wyoming. These projects help WCDA meet our goals of reaching out to all communities, including more sparsely populated cities and towns,” said Haney.
To view the report in full, click here. Two Wyoming projects are featured on pages 61 & 62.
As Executive Director of Wyoming Community Development Authority, Haney is a board member of the National Rural Housing Coalition and the National Council of State Housing Agencies.
The WCDA was created in 1975 by state statute as an instrumentality of the State of Wyoming. It receives no state funding but instead brings private capital to Wyoming on the strength of federal tax benefits for investment into affordable homes and rental apartments.