IRS Suspends LIHTC Rules to Allow Owners to House Tornado Victims
On May 20, 2013, the President issued a major disaster declaration for the State of Oklahoma because of the devastation caused by the tornadoes. Subsequently, the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) designated jurisdictions for Individual Assistance. Because of the damage to housing caused by the tornadoes, the IRS has determined that state housing agencies may provide approval to project owners in their respective states to provide temporary emergency housing for displaced individuals in accordance with IRS Notice 2013-40. The IRS has suspended certain rules to allow low-income housing tax credit (LIHTC) sites to be used to shelter victims of the Oklahoma tornadoes. The action lifts the income restrictions and non-transient requirements on the apartments, opening the door for LIHTC property owners to use vacant units to temporarily house residents displaced by the storms.
For purposes of this IRS notice, the term “displaced individual” means an individual who resided in a jurisdiction designated for Individual Assistance and who has been displaced because his or her residence was destroyed or damaged as a result of the tornadoes. The IRS has also determined that the projects to which this approval may be given may be located in any state, regardless of whether a major disaster declaration with Individual Assistance has been issued for that state.