House Bill 613 – Improving Sustainability of Affordable Housing

HB 613 is a victory for the affordable housing sector in Missouri. Previously, low-income residents began receiving unreasonable hikes in their real property tax because some assessors had begun disregarding existing precedence and raising property taxes as they could on unrestricted properties. HB 613 bill codifies in plain language the manner in which a county tax assessor may assess a property that qualifies for state or local tax credits. It also increases the valuation on a delinquent property before it can be advertised by the collector from $1,000.00 to $1500.00, thereby protecting some of our most vulnerable residents.

During the 2015 legislative session, dozens of Missouri Workforce Housing Association (MOWHA) members spent weeks contacting legislators with requests to support legislative language requiring county assessors to apply an income-based approach when assessing Low Income Housing Tax Credit (LIHTC) properties.

On July 6, 2015, the Governor signed the bill. The bill went into effect yesterday, August 28.

There are so many to thank for this accomplishment: At Missouri Housing Development Commission (MHDC), Frank Quagraine and Weylin Watson explained the importance of HB 613’s provisions. MOWHA member firms collaborated with MOWHA’s governmental affairs consultants Jorgen Schlemeier and Heath Clarkston, who helped spearhead efforts to pass the bill. New MOWHA member accountant Chuck Pierce provided technical expertise to legislators who wanted to better understand HB 613.

In short all these diligent members have assisted in the passing of a significant piece of affordable housing legislation.

Congratulations to everyone who played a role in proposing and pushing through a very crucial piece of legislation.

(The relevant section of language in House Bill 613 follows):

In establishing the value of a parcel of real property, the county assessor shall use an income based approach for assessment of parcels of real property with federal or state-imposed restrictions in regard to rent limitations, operations requirements, or any other restrictions imposed upon the property in connection with: (1) The property being eligible for any income tax credits under section 42 of the Internal Revenue Code of 1986, as amended; (2) Property constructed with the use of the United States Department of Housing and Urban Development HOME investment partnerships program; (3)Property constructed with the use of incentives provided by the United States Department of Agriculture Rural Development; or (4) Property receiving any other state or federal subsidies provided with respect to use of the property for housing purposes. For the purposes of this subsection, the term “income based approach” shall include the use of direct capitalization methodology and computed by dividing the net operating income of the parcel of property by an appropriate capitalization rate not to exceed the average of the current market data available in the county of said parcel of property. Federal and state tax credits or other subsidies shall not be used when calculating the capitalization rate.  Upon expiration of a land use restriction agreement, such parcel of property shall no longer be subject to this subsection.