Senate Approved Housing Bill Includes GO Zone Provision

April 11, 2008

WASHINGTON – The U.S. Senate yesterday passed the Foreclosure Prevention Act of 2008, housing assistance legislation that includes a provision offered by Sen. Roger Wicker (R-Miss.) to extend tax incentives included in the GO Zone Act of 2005.  In response, Sen. Wicker issued the following statement:

“Approval of this housing legislation is good news for homeowners in Mississippi and across the county who are struggling to hold on to their homes in the face of current housing problems.  I applaud my colleagues for coming together to pass bipartisan legislation that takes commonsense action to help address this problem.

“This also represents a giant step forward for those along Mississippi’s Gulf Coast that want to rebuild.  By including the extension of GO Zone tax incentives in this bill, we have acted to help families currently struggling through the housing slump while at the same time taking action to help those still trying to rebuild from Hurricane Katrina.”

The Foreclosure Prevention Act, approved in the Senate by a vote of 88-12, includes the following provisions:

  • Extension of the bonus depreciation provision included in the GO Zone Act of 2005 by erasing the construction commencement date included in the original legislation (Wicker provision)
  • A $7,000 tax credit, spread over two years, for Americans who purchase a foreclosed home
  • A standard property tax deduction for taxpayers who do not itemize on their returns
  • Over $10 billion in bond authority that could be used for subprime loan refinancing, mortgages for first-time home buyers, or multifamily rental housing
  • Extension – from two years to four years – of a provision that allows corporations to apply current losses to previous profits and receive applicable tax refunds
  • An additional $180 million for foreclosure prevention counseling   
  • The legislation now awaits action by the U.S. House of Representatives.