Wimberly, Oliver, Holley & Houghtaling Bill to Encourage Construction of Rental Housing for Veterans Clears Assembly

(TRENTON) – Legislation sponsored by Assembly Democrats Benjie Wimberly, Sheila Oliver, Jamel Holley and Eric Houghtaling to promote the construction of more rental housing for veterans was approved Thursday by the General Assembly.

The bill (A-2212) would establish a tax credit for New Jersey housing developers who construct homes for New Jersey veterans. The bill would permit developers to receive a non-refundable credit against New Jersey business taxes.

“Repeated and extended deployments in the conflicts in Iraq and Afghanistan have made it especially difficult for military personnel to find housing suited to their unique situations,” said Wimberly (D-Passaic/Bergen). “Veterans have served our country in times of war and peace, sharing a common belief in a cause higher than self. We must help them with this basic need.”

“No individual who put his or her life on the line for this country should be without a home,” said Oliver (D-Essex/Passaic). “This legislation will expand stable housing options and advance our state’s effort to end veteran homelessness.”

“New Jersey has an obligation to ensure that every veteran in our state has a roof over his or her head,” said Holley (D-Union). “Just as veterans made a commitment to fight for us, we must stand by our commitment to fight tor them.”

“Veterans put their lives on the line for our safety. We owe it to them to ensure that they have a place to call their own,” said Houghtaling (D-Monmouth). “This incentive will help create more rental housing options to better serve our veteran population.”

Under the legislation, the credit amount would be calculated based on the developer’s expenditures to create rental housing restricted to occupancy by veterans.

The bill provides that expenditures for a wide array of construction and real estate development activities are “allowable costs” that qualify for a credit. The credit amount may be up to 10 percent of the developer’s allowable costs for developing veterans’ housing.

To receive a credit, the developer must submit both a project plan and an application to the Department of Community Affairs. The DCA then would issue a certificate of eligibility for the developer to file with the developer’s tax return to obtain the credit.

The sponsors noted that more than 630,000 veterans live in New Jersey, and more than 500,000 of these personnel are civilian veterans.

The bill was approved 76-0 and now heads to the Senate for further consideration.