ICBA commends action on tax proposals in housing billMortgagePress.comICBA, House of Representatives, Congress, housing market, foreclosures, tax provisions, nine-point economic stimulus plan
The Independent Community Bankers of America (ICBA) has
commended Congress for advancing beneficial tax provisions as part
of a larger housing-related measure still being considered in the
"ICBA is pleased to see Congress taking action that will help
homeowners and potential homebuyers during this distressed housing
market," said Cynthia L. Blankenship, ICBA chairman and vice
chairman and chief operating officer of Bank of the West, Irving,
Texas. "These targeted tax-related proposals would help stem the
ongoing decline in the housing sector. However, key differences
remain between the House and Senate in the GSE and housing related
titles of the legislation. We will be working with Congress to
ensure that the interests of community banks are represented in the
Among the ICBA-backed tax provisions in the Senate tax package
• A homebuyer tax credit that would work as an
interest-free loan giving new homebuyers an $8,000 tax
credit--repayable over 15 years--to help jumpstart home sales and
stabilize declining prices.
• Allow the Federal Home Loan Banks to guarantee community
bank letters of credit issued to enhance the credit rating of local
government bonds. This provision would help ensure that municipal
bonds guaranteed in this manner are tax-exempt just like bonds
guaranteed by private bond insurers.
• Granting an additional standard deduction for real
property taxes for homeowners that claim the standard deduction.
This would allow up to a $500 individual and $1,000 joint return
for state real property taxes paid in 2008.
The House also included similar provisions in its version of the
housing legislation. ICBA looks forward to working with lawmakers
to pass these provisions and to reconcile the differences between
the House and Senate bills.
ICBA first proposed to Congress a homebuyer tax credit in its
nine-point economic stimulus plan in January 2008.
For more information, visit www.icba.org.