On Tuesday, November, 18, Bucks County Commissioner Chairman Robert G. Loughery traveled to Washington, D.C. for an appearance before the United States Senate Committee on Finance, Subcommittee on Taxation and IRS Oversight.
The topic of Chairman Loughery’s appearance at the Dirksen Senate Office Building was: “Tax Relief after a Disaster: How Individuals, Small Businesses and Communities Recover.”
“I appreciate the opportunity to discuss the timely and critical subject of how communities can best recover after a major natural disaster,” the commissioner chairman told members of a committee that includes both U.S. Senators from Pennsylvania, Robert P. Casey, Jr. and Patrick J. Toomey.
Chairman Loughery testified with fellow officials from around the United States whose communities have endured natural disasters, including the Honorable Karl F. Dean, Mayor of the Metropolitan Government of Nashville and Davidson County, TN; Mr. Sean T. Cronin, Executive Director of the St. Vrain and Left Hand Water Conservancy District, Longmont, CO; Mr. Steve Ellis, Vice President, Taxpayers for Common Sense, Washington, D.C.; and Mr. Troy K. Lewis, Chair, AICPA Tax Executive Committee, Draper, UT.
The chairman’s Bucks County testimony focused on 2011 storm events Hurricane Irene and Tropical Storm Lee. He further noted that Bucks County has experienced eight (8) federally declared weather-related disasters since 2007.
His testimony stated: “In each of these events the Neshaminy Creek, the Delaware River and the Delaware Canal all saw substantial flooding, resulting in millions of dollars of losses to residents and businesses. These storms also disrupted hundreds of thousands of lives while threatening the livelihood of thousands.”
He spoke of the need for “further tax relief” in restoring the quality of life for residents and businesses in the wake of storms, adding, “It is my understanding that this relief may also include the availability of additional low income housing tax credits, which I would also like to encourage. The Low-Income Housing Tax Credit (LIHTC) Program has been and continues to be one of the single most powerful producers of high quality affordable rental homes.”
Chairman Loughery specifically mentioned the Venice Ashby neighborhood of Bristol Township as a community that “would benefit from an increased allocation of low income housing tax credits.” He closed by urging the sub-committee “to lend a hand in rebuilding lives and restoring dreams.”