[Adopted 9-13-2007 by Bill No. 10-07, effective 10-29-2007 (Ch. 182, Art. VI, of the 1984 Code)]
Editor's Note: This bill also repealed former Art. VI, Historic Tax Credit, adopted 10-14-1999 by Bill No. 4-99, effective 11-28-1999.
Definitions. In this article, the following terms shall have the meanings indicated:
- ELIGIBLE IMPROVEMENTS
- Significant improvements to or restoration or rehabilitation of historic or heritage properties.
Declaration of public interest. The County Commissioners declare that it is in the general public interest to foster and encourage historic preservation and heritage tourism activities through improvement, restoration and rehabilitation of historic or heritage property so as to:
Preserve and protect the heritage of the County as represented by its remaining historic buildings and structures;
Stimulate the positive aspects of historic or heritage preservation, such as economic development and employment opportunities; and
Implement and effect County and subdivision planning activities aimed at preserving historic structures, sites, districts and heritage areas.
Legislative intent. It is the intent of the County Commissioners that the taxation of significant improvements to and restoration or rehabilitation of historic or heritage properties be maintained for a period of up to 10 years at taxation levels not greater than those in place before the eligible improvements, if approved as part of a local government plan for historic or heritage preservation as authorized by § 9-204.1 of the Tax Property Article of the Annotated Code of Maryland.
Tax credit. There shall be allowed a tax credit on County real property taxes upon properties meeting the qualifications contained herein, which credit shall be the difference between the property tax that, but for the tax credit, would be payable after the completion of eligible improvements, and the property tax that would be payable if the eligible improvements were not made.
A property tax credit provided for under this section shall:
Be subject to eligibility requirements no less stringent than those applicable to credits authorized under § 9-204 of the Tax Property Article of the Annotated Code of Maryland.
Be for a period that does not exceed 10 years for each property. The specific period of the property tax credit shall depend upon the cost of eligible improvement as compared to the value of the property if the eligible improvement had not been made as set forth below:
Apply to eligible improvements which are to:
A property listed individually in the National Register of Historic Places, or the National Register of Historic or Landmark Districts;
A property or district designated as an historic property or district under local law; or
A property included within the boundaries of a certified heritage area under § 13-1111 of the Financial Institutions Article of the Annotated Code of Maryland.
The property owner shall invest in a minimum of $5,000 in improvement costs for the property.
The property owner must submit construction plans for the improvements or renovations to the local Historic Preservation Commission and obtain a certificate of appropriateness from said Historic Preservation Commission.
In the event that the historic district is located within a municipality which has an historic tax credit program, the property owner may elect to apply for the County historic tax credit by so indicating upon the forms required by the municipal tax credit program. If the property qualifies under the municipal tax credit program, that body or official authorized by the municipality to determine eligibility for the municipal tax credit program, shall certify to the County Director of Finance that the property so qualifies, and therefore, the property will receive the tax credits without additional application to or certification by the County.
Refund of tax credit.
If for any reason a property granted a tax credit pursuant to this article ceases to be located within the historic district, the owner may be required to refund such credit.
Should any property cease to be located within the historic district through no action of the owner, there shall be no refund of the tax credit required.
Should the property owner initiate any action that results in the property ceasing to be located within the historic district, the property shall be required to refund all tax credits received to date.
Effect of prior legislation. Any property owner who has been granted an historic tax credit under any prior legislation of the County providing for a different computation of the tax credit shall be entitled to continue to receive the benefit of the prior legislation until such time as said credit has expired.