Public Investment into Smart Growth Strategies
Two economic development public investment strategies that are key to our state’s future are the Housing and Conservation Board (VHCB) and the Vermont Downtown and Village Center redevelopment incentives.
Vermont Housing and Conservation Board
The Governor’s FY 2012 recommendation for the VHCB is $12.6 million. The Governor recommends a creative funding strategy that mixes property transfer tax funds ($8.6M) and capital bill dollars ($4M) to reach a total investment level equivalent to the amount called for by the statutory formula. VHCB state investment funds leverage many additional dollars to build permanently affordable housing in our community centers and conserve important working lands. Land conservation supports agricultural business development and protects our world-class landscape. The state budget faces a significant deficit this year so this strong economic development recommendation from the Governor will be in the mix as the Legislature writes the budget over the coming months.
Downtown and Village Center Incentives
The Vermont Downtown and Village Center redevelopment incentives help property owners improve their older community center buildings. The Downtown Board is authorized to award $1.7 million worth of credits to property owners next year under an existing state statute. The Legislature is currently considering the value of all tax expenditures authorized in state statute. Smart Growth Vermont, in partnership with the Preservation Trust of Vermont, works to showcase the value of these tools to the House Ways and Means Committee.