Congressman Introduces Disaster Tax Relief Bill, Includes Increased LIHTC Allocation

United States CongressOn September 22, Representative Charles Boustany (R-LA) introduced H.R. 6137, the Louisiana Flood and Storm Devastation Tax Relief Act of 2016, to provide victims of severe storms and flooding with tax relief as they recover from damage to their home and property.

For individuals, the bill temporarily suspends penalties for withdrawing funds from retirement accounts, allows partial expensing of demolition and clean-up costs, and allows those who wish to claim a casualty loss deduction the option to file amended tax returns for the previous three tax years.

For businesses, the legislation provides employees with a temporary, 30-day income exclusion for employer-provided reimbursement of temporary lodging, an allowance for qualified employers to claim the Work Opportunity Tax Credit (WOTC), and an extended 5-year carryback period for employers claiming Net Operating Losses resulting from this year’s flooding events.

To help the rebuilding process, the bill also allows for an increase in the state’s Low Income Housing Tax Credit ceiling allowance for rebuilding efforts in distressed areas, an additional allocation of New Market Tax Credits for disaster declared areas, and enhanced availability of tax-exempt private activity bonds to help incentivize public-private partnerships for rebuilding efforts.

For more information on H.R. 6137, see Representative Boustany's press release: