Just ahead of state budget season, two Republican lawmakers are stumping for a proposal that would establish a waterfront development tax credit initiative in Pennsylvania.
Sen. Randy Vulakovich, R-Allegheny County, and Rep. Tom Killion, R-Delaware County, introduced companion bills last spring to encourage private investment and economic development along waterfront properties, which also could spur environmental improvements and public recreation enhancements.
The two will hold a 5 p.m. news conference today in the east rotunda of the state Capitol to push those bills — Senate Bill 968 and House Bill 1461. The former is in the Senate Appropriations Committee, while the latter remains in the House Finance Committee.
The credits would be capped at $10 million per year. They would be available to individuals or businesses contributing to nonprofit waterfront improvement organizations.
At the time his bill was introduced, Vulakovich cited about $130 million of investment in 10 Pittsburgh riverfront projects since 1999. That was when Riverlife was started. The senator also noted more than $4 billion in adjacent investment, ranging from corporate headquarters and office buildings to hotels, residences and sports and entertainment complexes.
Contributions would be used for specific waterfront development projects, and organizations and projects would have to be approved by the state Department of Community and Economic Development prior to participation in the program.