Restoration Tax Abatement
Saenger Theatre, New Orleans
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Starting in July 2018, all forms and documents related to this program must be submitted online via the next generation of FastLane. Therefore, we will no longer be accepting paper forms after June 25th. Any documents received after that date will be mailed back to the sender.


Restoration Tax Abatement

The Restoration Tax Abatement (RTA) program provides an up-to ten-year abatement of property taxes (ad valorem) on renovations and improvements of existing commercial structures and owner-occupied residences.

*Five-year contract; option for five-year renewal with approval from local governing authority, Board of Commerce and Industry, and governor's approval.


Eligibility

RTA is available to all Louisiana businesses and homeowners with existing structures to be expanded, restored, improved or developed in qualifying locations, and as approved by the local governing authority.

*If property taxes have been paid on improvements, a business or homeowner is not eligible to apply for the exemption.

Qualifying Locations for Properties Include:

  • Downtown Development Districts
  • Historic Districts (includes properties listed on the National Register of Historic Places)
  • Economic Development Districts*

*Different from Enterprise Zones and Economic Development ZonesT

Eligible Expenses:

  • Building and Materials
  • Machinery and Equipment (only that which becomes an integral part of the structure)
  • Labor and Engineering

Non-eligible Expenses:

  • Acquisition Cost of the Structure or Land
  • Movable and Personal Property

Program Statutes & Rules:

RTA program rules may be found in the Louisiana Administrative Code maintained by the Office of the State Register.


Getting Started

First Step. Prior to project start, business owner or residential homeowner will submit online in FastLane, an Advance Notification, and pay filing fee.

If the contact designee is a representative other than a company official, a  Disclosure Authorization is required and should be submitted inFastLane. 

View fees associated with this incentive. 

*Fees are nonrefundable. 

Note: To determine if the overall tax benefit is greater than the cost to participate in this program, contact your assessor for approximate annual tax savings for the proposed investment in your property. 


Next Steps

Upon Louisiana Economic Development’s (LED’s) receipt of the advance notification and fee, the project may begin following these steps:

  1. Program Application and Fee. Submit online before beginning construction.
  2. Begin Project. Includes construction, purchase of equipment that is an integral part of the structure, building and materials, and other eligible capital investment transactions.
  3. Application Review. Upon receipt of application and fee, Louisiana Economic Development (LED) will review application for compliance, verify submitted information, and provide a copy for resolution to the local governing authority. Upon receipt of an approval resolution from the local governing authority, application is presented for consideration to the Board of Commerce & Industry.
  4. Board Review. Application is presented for consideration to the Board of Commerce & Industry. Applicants will be notified within seven days of the board meeting with instructions, time and location of meeting. Applicants should have someone present to answer questions the Board may have regarding information contained in the application. (The board convenes every other month, meeting six times a calendar year.)
  5. Contract. Upon application approval by the Board of Commerce & Industry, a contract will be sent electronically from LED to the designated contract signatory via Adobe Sign. Contract should be reviewed and signed, within 60 days of receipt. Please note, on the signature page, the company contact refers to an employee of the company. A fully executed contract with governor’s signature will be emailed to you.
  6. Project Completion Report and Fee. File with LED within 30 days following the last day of the month after effective use of the structure has begun, or construction is essentially completed, whichever occurs first.
  7. Affidavit of Final Cost and Fee. File with LED within six months after construction has been completed, or within 90 days of receipt of executed contract, whichever occurs last.
  8. Renewal. The same approval process used for the original application and contract will be followed for renewal. A Renewal Application and fee must be submitted within six months of contract expiration. LED will review renewal application and forward to the local governing authority for approval resolution. Upon approval by the local governing authority, renewal application will be presented for consideration to the Board of Commerce and Industry
  9. Renewal Board Review. Upon approval by the Board of Commerce and Industry, a contract will be sent electronically for signatures. A fully executed contract with the governor’s signature will be emailed to you.
  10. Name Change/Contract Transfer. If at any time during the term of a contract, a name change or transfer of ownership occurs; a Change in Name form or Contract Transfer form must be submitted for approval online. Upon receipt of an approval resolution from the local governing authority, request will be presented for approval to the Board of Commerce and Industry.

 


Eligibility Scenarios

Q: I am renovating my home. How do I know if the benefit of an exemption outweighs the cost to participate in the RTA program?

A: To determine if the benefit is greater than the cost to participate contact the assessor to ask what your investment will add to the increased value of your property and how much additional tax you will be required to pay.

 Q: I purchased a condo property that has an active Restoration Tax Abatement (RTA) contract with the original owner. Can the contract be transferred to the new owner?

A: Yes, if allowed by local governing authority guidelines. The contract can be transferred to the new owner by submitting a request to LED, and subsequent approval from the local governing authority and the Board of Commerce and Industry. A Transfer of Ownership Request form must be submitted online with $250 fee.

Q: I purchased an uninhabited and run-down property to restore for use as a hotel. Is the purchase price of the property part of my investment for claiming the Restoration Tax Abatement?

A: No. Only improvements to the existing structure are eligible for the abatement. Acquisition cost of the structure or the land is not eligible for the abatement.

Q: What if I've already paid property taxes on the improvements that I am seeking to abate? Can I still qualify for the abatement?

A: The tax abatement is not available if property taxes have been paid on the improvements made by the project. If, however, the application process has not been completed and those property taxes for the project are due, contact your local assessor to determine how to pay these taxes under protest and what steps may need to be taken to maintain eligibility.

 

Q: If my property is not located in an economic development district can it still be considered for the Restoration Tax Abatement?

A: If your structure is not currently located in an economic development district, contact your local governing authority to see if this may be an option.


FAQs

Q: What is Louisiana's Restoration Tax Abatement Program?

A: The Restoration Tax Abatement Program is an incentive created for municipalities and local governments to encourage the expansion, restoration, improvement and development of existing structures in downtown development districts, economic development districts and historic districts.

Q: How do I apply for the Louisiana Restoration Tax Abatement?

A: Submit online in FastLane an Advance Notification and $250 filing fee prior to project start (i.e., before beginning construction)

Q: What is the cost to participate in the RTA program?

A: A fee schedule is provided in the Getting Started section with the required fees.

Q: What is an Advance Notification?

A: A document notifying LED of an intended project before any construction or capital expenditure has been made. The earliest date construction can begin is the date an Advance Notification is submitted online successfully. If construction begins before an Advance Notification is submitted expenditures made prior to this date may not be included as part of the investment.

*Acknowledgement of receipt of Advance Notification by LED does not guarantee eligibility to participate in the program.

Q: What is a Resolution from the local governing authority?

A: A resolution is a written motion issued by the local governing authority approving participation in the Restoration Tax Abatement Program. It may also be called an Approval Resolution. This is required before an application can be presented to the Board of Commerce and Industry.

Q: What benefits are made available by participating in the Restoration Tax Abatement Program?

A: Five-year abatement of ad valorem property taxes on the increased value of the property from the restoration, improvement, development or expansion of an existing structure.

Q: Can someone other than the property owner or company representative file an RTA application?

A: Yes. If an application is being prepared and/or submitted by someone other than the owner of the property, submit a Resolution of the Board of Directors or Resolution of Property Owners and related documents to execute the application on behalf of the company or individual owner of the property for which the application is being filed.