Illinois Historic Preservation Tax Credit Program

​The Illinois Historic Preservation Tax Credit Program provides a state income-tax credit equal to 25% of a project's qualified expenditures (but not to exceed $3 million) to owners of certified historic structures who undertake certified rehabilitations. The substantial rehabilitation investments will create jobs in Illinois, stimulate local economies, and revitalize historic structures and neighborhoods. The Illinois Historic Preservation Tax Credit Program is administered by the Illinois State Historic Preservation Office at the Department of Natural Resources and runs from January 1, 2019 to December 31, 2023. The program was signed into law by Governor Rauner on July 26, 2018 (Public Act 100-0629).

This state income-tax credit program caps the amount of credit available to be allocated at $15 million in the first year and a total of $75 million in five years. There will be two allocation rounds held each year of the 5-year program. Each round has an application consisting of three mandatory parts: S-1, S-2, and S-3.

S-1: The first part of the allocation application (Part S-1) is an in-person workshop held in Springfield, at which SHPO staff will explain the program and its allocation process. Anyone can attend, and no RSVP is required.
For attendance to count as Part S-1: applying projects must have the Part 2 of their federal historic tax-credit applications approved or conditionally approved by the National Park Service by the date of that round's S-1 workshop.

S-2: The second part of the application (Part S-2) is a simple online submittal that establishes the order in which the sorted Part S-3s will receive allocations. Projects that submit Part S-2 will receive an automatic e-mail response confirming the date and time their submittal was received by the SHPO.
To be eligible to submit Part S-2: applying projects must have been represented at that round's S-1 workshop.

S-3: The last part of the allocation application (Part S-3) is a hard-copy submittal that asserts the number of priorities that the project meets. All projects must submit Part S-3, even if they do not meet any of the five priorities. The SHPO will sort applications based on the number of priorities each project meets: five, four, three, two, one, or zero. Within each stack of prioritized projects, applications will be placed in the order that their Part S-2s arrived at the SHPO. The final queue will begin with the project that meets the highest number of priorities and whose Part S-2 the SHPO received first.
To be eligible to submit Part S-3: applying projects must have submitted that round's Part S-2.

The five priorities that can be asserted per project are:

  1. The structure must be located in a county that borders a state with a historic income-producing-property rehabilitation credit. Click here to download instructions on how to assert this priority for your project in 2019 Application Round 1.
  2. The structure must have been previously owned by a federal, state, or local-governmental entity for no less than six months. Click here to download instructions on how to assert this priority for your project in 2019 Application Round 1.
  3. The structure must be located in a census tract that has a median family income at or below the Illinois median family income; data from the most recent 5-year estimate from the American Community Survey (ACS), published by the U.S. Census Bureau, shall be used to determine eligibility. Click here to download instructions on how to assert this priority for your project in 2019 Application Round 1.
  4. The qualified rehabilitation plan must include in the development partnership a Community Development Entity or a low-profit (B Corporation) or not-for-profit organization, as defined by Section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code. Click here to download instructions on how to assert this priority for your project in 2019 Application Round 1.
  5. The structure must be located in an area declared under the federal Robert T. Stafford Disaster Relief and Emergency Assistance Act as an Emergency Declaration (pursuant to Title V of the Act) or Major Disaster Declaration (pursuant to Title IV of the Act). The declaration must be no older than 3 years at the time of application. Click here to download instructions on how to assert this priority for your project in 2019 Application Round 1.

 

2019 Application Round 1—Tax Credit Allocation Process, Dates and Deadlines

Available allocation funds: up to $9.75 million (up to 65% of $15,000,000)

Part S-1 of the application

  1. Wednesday, June 5, 2019, 1:30 pm: SHPO holds Part S-1 meeting in the Old State Capitol Reading Room, Springfield. This meeting is required for all Round 1 applicants.
    • SHPO explains the 3-part application process.
    • SHPO provides the web link for Part S-2 (online) of the application and the date and time it will go live. The 'Submit' button will not be enabled until the exact time the Part S-2 application period starts and will be disabled when the period ends.
    • SHPO explains the requirements for the S-3 application and how to satisfy each of the five priorities.
    • Each attendee who intends to submit a full application must:
      • attend the meeting in person, and
      • register in person onsite, and
      • provide a name, email address, mailing address, and the NPS project number of the project for which he or she will be applying for state historic tax credits.
    • All projects applying for the statewide tax credit must have an approved or conditionally approved Part 2 certified by the National Park Service by the date of the S-1 meeting.
    • For related multiple building rehabilitations the NPS will determine for federal tax credit purposes whether they are one or multiple projects and assign NPS a project number(s) accordingly. This program will follow the NPS determination and consider one project to be a rehabilitation represented by a single NPS project number as determined by the NPS.
    • People are encouraged to attend the meeting even if they do not intend to submit the rest of the application for this round.  Each attendee must still sign in at the meeting.
  2. Friday, June 14, 2019: SHPO posts on program website a list of all S-1 attendees who registered and the projects they represent.

Part S-2 of the application

  1. Wednesday, June 5, 2019, 10:00 am: Part S-2 website goes live.
  2. Wednesday, July 10, 2019, 10:00 am: Part S-2 online submission activates, allowing applicants to complete it. NPS project number and the date of NPS certification (i.e., date the NPS reviewer signed the Part 2) will be two of the required fields. This submission is required for all Round 1 applicants.
  3. Friday, July 12, 2019, 5:00 pm: Part S-2 online submission deactivates.
  4. When the applicant electronically submits Part S-2 during the allotted period, each applicant receives an auto-confirmation e-mail with a date-time stamp.
  5. SHPO cross references the Part S-2 list with the list of S-1 meeting attendees.
    • Part S-2 applications not represented at the Part S-1 meeting are removed from consideration for this round.
    • Remaining Part S-2 applications are sorted based on date and time of their receipt.
  6. Friday, July 26, 2019: SHPO notifies all S-2 applicants of the order of S-2 applications received and whether they are eligible to proceed with Part S-3. Eligible S-2 applicants may then submit Part S-3 (hard copy).
  7. SHPO posts on program website a list of all S-2 applications, sorted by date and time received, noting any projects removed from consideration due to being absent from the S-1 meeting.

Part S-3 of the application

  1. Friday, August 9, 2019, 5:00 pm: Deadline for receiving at the SHPO the hardcopy of Part S-3 from eligible applicants (those who successfully completed S-1 and S-2). This submission is required for all Round 1 applicants.
  2. SHPO reviews all Part S-3s and determines the number of priorities met per applicant.
  3. SHPO sorts all Part S-3s in the following order:
    • Projects that meet 5 priorities are placed in order by the date and time that their S-2s were received.
    • Projects that meet 4 priorities are placed in order by the date and time that their S-2s were received.
    • Projects that meet 3 priorities are placed in order by the date and time that their S-2s were received.
    • Projects that meet 2 priorities are placed in order by the date and time that their S-2s were received.
    • Projects that meet 1 priority are placed in order by the date and time that their S-2s were received.
    • Projects that meet 0 priorities are placed in order by the date and time that their S-2s were received.
  4. SHPO assigns the allocations, starting with the project that meets the highest number of priorities and whose S-2 was received first and goes down the list stated above until the available allocation amount is reached. 
    • The SHPO assigns an eligible application an allocation in an amount equal to the lesser of the following:
      • For projects that are not completed, 25% of the estimated QREs on the certified Part 2, or
      • For projects that are completed and have a certified Part 3 but not a cost certification, 25% of actual QREs on the certified Part 3, or
      • For projects that are completed and have a certified Part 3 and a cost certification, 25% of certified QREs on the cost certification, or
      • $3 million.
    • If, at the end of an allocation round, the allocation amount of the last eligible project exceeds the available allocation amount that remains, the SHPO allocates the remaining amount to that project. The project may competitively re-apply in a subsequent round for the balance of the allocation (i.e., 25% of the estimated, actual, or certified QREs minus the previously allocated amount). 
  5. Friday, August 30, 2019: SHPO notifies all S-3 applicants of the Round 1 allocation results by email and hardcopy.
  6. SHPO posts on program website the final list of S-3 applications, sorted first by priority then by date and time received, and the amount (if any) of each application's allocation. The amount of allocations known to be available for the next allocation round is also noted.

2019 Application Round 2—Dates and Deadlines

Available allocation funds: $5.25 million plus any unassigned allocations from 2019 Round 1

  • Wednesday, September 25, 2019, 1:30 pm: Part S-1 meeting starts in the Old State Capitol Reading Room, Springfield.
  • Wednesday, October 2, 2019: SHPO posts on program website Part S-1 meeting attendees who registered and the projects they represent.
  • Wednesday, September 25, 2019, 10:00 am: Part S-2 website goes live.
  • Wednesday, October 9, 2019, 10:00 am: Part S-2 online submission activates.
  • Friday, October 11, 2019, 5:00 pm: Part S-2 online submission deactivates.
  • Friday, October 25, 2019: SHPO emails all S-2 applicants whether they are eligible to proceed with Part S-3 and updates its website accordingly.
  • Friday, November 8, 5:00 pm: Deadline for receiving at the SHPO the hardcopy of Part S-3.
  • Wednesday, December 4, 2019: SHPO notifies S-3 applicants of the Round 2 allocation results by email (with hardcopy in the mail) and updates its website accordingly.

Additional details, including application forms, are being developed and will be posted here once finalized.