The federal government and over thirty states nationwide offer a tax credit in lieu of certain expenditures incurred as part of historic rehabilitation projects. Several economic impact studies have shown the positive effect of the credit on job creation, property values, and environmental friendly behavior in Louisville, KY (Gilderbloom, Hanka & Ambrosius, 2009) and in the state of Maryland (Frizzell & Mitchell, 2002). Most of the studies of historic preservation credits are, however, nonempirical and evaluate only the economic impact of the credit. The societal benefit-cost analysis conducted in this manuscript is the first study of its kind of the Ohio Historic Preservation Tax Credit (OHPTC) program. In addition, this study provides an OHPTC fiscal impact analysis (benefit-cost analysis from the government perspective).
The data for the analysis come from the county auditors’ offices, and multiple proprietary sources, including administrative estimates provided by the agencies managing the OHPTC program, and online survey of the developers. The sensitivity analysis accounts for the differences in discount rates and other factors. The study finds that the overall societal benefits will outweigh overall societal costs by 2023. From the fiscal perspective, the program begins to pay for itself in 2025, but the overall program costs will remain higher than overall benefits during the considered study period (until 2030).