Bay States Low-Income Programs Get Boost

October 31, 2009

The Boston Globe, by Jenifer B. McKim

Three Massachusetts organizations were awarded $230 million in tax credits aimed at creating jobs and development in low-income communities, the US Treasury Department said yesterday.

Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner detailed the local allotment as part of $5 billion worth of awards made through the New Markets Tax Credit program, an economic development effort launched in 2000 by Congress.

Geithner was in Boston in May to unveil a first batch of tax credits – worth $1.5 billion – made possible through the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act.

In Chicago yesterday, Geithner released details about the latest round of funding, which includes $85 million for Boston Community Capital Inc., $55 million for MassDevelopment New Markets LLC, and $90 million for Massachusetts Housing Investment Corp. The organizations will sell the credits to private investors to help fund projects in areas such as renewable energy, education, health care, and retail in low-income communities.

“We have a very healthy pipeline of opportunities,’’ said Peter Sargent, director of capital development for the nonprofit Massachusetts Housing Investment Corp., which works to provide funding for affordable-housing projects. “Now we have to identify which opportunities are ready to proceed.’’

Senator John F. Kerry said the funding is a “lifeline’’ for the state’s low-income communities.

“It means help with jobs, housing, and infrastructure,’’ the Massachusetts Democrat said. “It will allow these organizations on the front lines to continue providing high-impact, localized service that will get results.’’

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