Innovative ways for business owners, developers and investors to invest in commercial property in our borough.
A portion of Wilkinsburg is in a designated Opportunity Zone. This program provides the investors with capital gains tax liability the ability to defer and reduce that tax liability by investing in real estate and other qualified business property within an Opportunity Zone. The program provides an additional incentive for investors that hold their Opportunity Zone investments for ten years the ability to eliminate capital gains taxes on those investments. To be eligible for the program, all investments must be made through a Qualified Opportunity Fund. The potential benefits of the program are significant, and provide a benefit to investing in Wilkinsburg that is not available in many other communities.
Historic Tax Credits
A portion of Wilkinsburg is within a National Register Historic District, and renovations to For contributing buildings within this District may be eligible for the Federal Historic Rehabilitation Tax Credit. To qualify the project must be an income producing property (residential, commercial, or mixed-use) and conform to the Secretary’s Standards for Rehabilitation. The available tax credit is for 20% of qualifying costs. Typically the tax credits are sold to a private investor, usually a financial institution, that invests cash equity into the project in exchange for the benefits of the tax credit.
In addition to the Federal Historic Rehabilitation Tax Credits, the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania also has a Historic Preservation Tax Credit (HPTC) program. All projects must include a qualified rehabilitation plan that is approved by the Pennsylvania Historical and Museum Commission (PHMC). The program has a competitive application process.
The Borough of Wilkinsburg has an innovative way for qualified business owners, developers and investors to invest in commercial property in the Borough through a Tax Base Expansion Ordinance. The ordinance includes Local Economic Revitalization Tax Assistance (LERTA) and Tax Compromise components.
The LERTA application, referred to as the Wilkinsburg Tax Abatement Program, offers a 10 year graduated increase in property taxes on improvements made to real property in Wilkinsburg. Any person, organization, corporation, limited liability company, partnership, or association may apply. In addition to this tax abatement, the Borough also offers an Enhanced Tax Abatement. The difference between the regular and enhanced tax abatement programs is dependent on the property type. Both programs require the same application, which must be submitted when acquiring a building permit for improvement or construction.
The Tax Compromise Program addresses the issue of back taxes on real estate owed to the Borough and the Wilkinsburg School District. This ordinance is a result of a joint tax committee of the Borough, the Wilkinsburg School District and Allegheny County. The aim of these efforts is to reduce barriers to private investment in the Borough and to enhance existing and upcoming economic development projects.
Also, find out more about the Business Privilege Tax and what it means for your business.