Rally to Restore the NC Historic Tax Credit

  On Wednesday, August 12, APA-NC President John Morck, Past President Ben Hitchings, and other N.C. planners and historic preservationists went to the Historic Statehouse in Raleigh to attend a press event calling for the restoration of the North Carolina Historic Tax Credit. The Historic Tax Credit has provided $1.6 billion in investment in cities and towns to restore historic structures and revitalize main streets and downtown areas across the state since 1998. Planners and other historic preservation advocates then visited legislators to encourage North Carolina state senators to follow the lead of their counterparts in the House, who overwhelmingly passed House Bill 152 to restore the credit. APA-NC members were well represented at the event, including Annette Stone from Carrboro, Kermit Skinner and Erin Burke from Manteo, Craig Harmon from Fayetteville, and Kimberly Van Dyk and LuAnn Monson from Wilson. Planners and local leaders are encouraged to reach out to their legislators to let them know how the Historic Tax Credit has helped catalyze private investment, create jobs, and revitalize main streets and downtowns in their community. Please thank House members for passing H.152 to restore the Historic Tax Credit, and encourage Senators to take up the bill and pass it. Communities large and small across the state need this tool to help ensure their economic success in the years ahead!...

What You Need to Know About the STI (Strategic Mobility Investments) Law

Written by Paul Black Governor McCrory signed House Bill 817, the Strategic Mobility Investments  (STI) into law on June 26th, 2013 to replace the “Equity Formula” used to divide available funding among different areas of the state and different types of projects.  It is the most significant transportation legislation passed in North Carolina since the creation of the Highway Trust Fund in 1989, and passed both house and Senate with overwhelming support. A quick overview of how it works:  There are 3 major “tiers” for investment.  These tiers are based on their function in the overall transportation system.  Projects on the interstates and a few other other high-order corridors are part of the statewide investment tier; projects on other US or NC designated routes are part of the regional investment tier, and everything else on the state system is part of the division tier. The statewide tier projects are selected purely on a data-driven basis.  As part of the SPOT3 workgroup responsible for advising NDCOT as part of the rulemaking process, I can attest to the thought and vetting that went into the project scoring.  There are still imperfect data sources, but given the available information, the process did a good job meeting the charge given to the workgroup: put investment in places with the most congestion.  The draft statewide project list ended up looking a lot like the counterpart to the old Equity Formula, the “Urban Loop” program, and is available for review at https://connect.ncdot.gov/projects/planning/STIData/Draft_Statewide_Program.pdf. The regional and division tiers are in the final phases of development.  These tiers also receive input from local NCDOT engineers and regional...

Assembly Line – APA’s Legislative Summary

Written by Chad Meadows, AICP Legislative Committee Chairman 2014 was another difficult year for planning at the General Assembly. This year’s short session, like the long session in 2013, was fraught with rapid fire legislative proposals, complex catch-all omnibus bills, tax reforms that spell the end to several revenue sources, and a budget that cost several state planners their jobs. The following list summarizes key planning-related legislation that passed the General Assembly in 2014. This post also includes some details on the legislation that didn’t pass (but may be back in 2015) Bill #: Title/Description Summary S865 – Extra-Territorial Jurisdiction ETJ authority removed from Boone (and Weaverville). H1050 – Privilege Licenses Local governments can levy privilege license taxes for the rest of FY 2014 (and the amount may not exceed the amount charged in 2013). After FY 2014 ends, privilege license taxes will no longer be authorized. S734 – Vested Rights (Choice Provision) In cases where an applicant submits an application and the regulation changes after submittal but before a decision is made, a local government must allow the applicant to choose which rules they wish to follow. Does not apply to “zoning” permits, but does apply to subdivision rules and any development regulations housed outside the zoning code. S786 – Environmental Omnibus (Fracking) Allows the state Energy Commission to override local development regulations if the Commission finds the local regulations prohibit or have the effect of prohibiting oil and gas exploration/production. S402 (Budget) – Historic Preservation Tax Credits/Film Industry Incentives Current historic preservation tax credits (20% tax credit match from NC) & film industry incentives (25% refund) will sunset at the end of 2014....
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