Four of NAIOP-WI’s Top Legislative Priorities Signed Into Law
By Tom Larson
NAIOP-WI wrapped up a successful 2013 legislative year by having Governor Walker sign four of its top legislative priorities signed into law. Like many of NAIOP-WI’s other legislative priorities already signed into law, each of these legislative initiatives will remove regulatory barriers and/or create additional incentives for economic development in Wisconsin. NAIOP-WI worked with lawmakers on both sides of the aisle, and other key stakeholders, to move the bills through the legislative process and onto to the Governor’s desk. The following is a brief description of the new law laws recently enacted:
- Historic rehabilitation tax credit (2013 Wis. Act 62) – Doubles the state income and franchise tax credit for “qualified rehabilitation expenditures” from 10% to 20% of those costs and broadens the types of structures that are eligible for the credit. The new increased tax credit applies for expenditures greater than $50,000, and for rehabilitated buildings placed into service after 12/31/12.
- Landlord/tenant regulations (2013 Wis. Act 76) — Makes several technical and regulatory changes to make ownership of rental property less cumbersome and more profitable including clarifying the process for disposing of tenant’s personal property after eviction, expediting the eviction process, limiting double damages and attorney fees to only security deposit violations and illegal rental agreement provisions, streamlining the process for towing illegally parked cars, and other restrictions on the ability of municipalities to regulate landlord activities.
- Shoreland zoning after annexation (2013 Wis. Act 80) – Authorizes cities and villages to apply their own shoreland zoning standards to newly annexed and incorporated property in shoreland areas if these shoreland zoning standards include minimum setback (50 feet) and vegetative maintenance requirements.
- Vested rights (2013 Wis. Act 74) –Clarifies current law and firmly establishes a property owner’s vested rights by statute by stating that changes to any local ordinances and regulations cannot be applied to permit applications after the date the application has been submitted to the local government.
NAIOP-WI Meets With Lawmakers to Discuss Concerns Related to Local Living Wage Ordinances
By Tom Larson
In response to a proposed Milwaukee County ordinance that would require all contractors and sub-contractors doing business with they county to pay “living wage,” NAIOP-WI representatives met with state lawmakers to discuss the potential impacts on economic development in the area.
While the all the details related to Milwaukee County’s proposed living wage ordinance are not yet clear, the ordinance reportedly would require all full-time employees to receive roughly $11.33 per hour, or $23,550 per year. As a comparison, federal minimum wage is $7.25 per hour, or $15,070 per year.
Depending upon to whom the ordinance applied, the impact to future economic development in Milwaukee could be significant. Washington, D.C., for example, proposed a similar ordinance aimed at workers employed by Wal-Mart and other large “big-box” retailers, but it was vetoed by the mayor due to its likely impact on jobs, which were projected to decline by 4,000 due to the ordinance.
While the living wage ordinance has yet to be introduced in Milwaukee County, NAIOP-WI will continue to meet with county supervisors and state lawmakers to ensure that such an ordinance does not go into effect.