Financial Incentives

Minnesota Legacy Amendment Arts and Cultural Heritage Fund Grants

When Minnesota voters passed the Clean Water, Land and Legacy Amendment, the state legislature created the Arts and Cultural Heritage Fund, a portion of which was appropriated to the Minnesota Historical Society for history-related projects around the state. One of those new initiatives is the Statewide Historical and Cultural Grants program.  Grants are available for historic preservation projects in the following categories: evaluation; heritage tourism and public education; historic properties; National Register nominations; preservation planning; and survey and inventory.  This grant program is funded by the State of Minnesota; grants are awarded on a competitive basis dependent on available State funding.

Contact: Mandy Skypala, Grants Office, 651-296-5478,

Minnesota Historic Structure Rehabilitation State Tax Credit / Grant Program

The Minnesota Historic Structure Rehabilitation Tax Credit offers a 20% state tax credit for qualified historic rehabilitations, and parallels the existing federal rehabilitation tax credit. It also offers project investors an option of a grant in lieu of a credit, whichever option best suits a developer’s tax situation, in order to maximize the efficiency of the public dollars assisting the project.  Only income-producing properties are eligible for this incentive. This tax credit/ grant program is funded by the State of Minnesota; funds are awarded to eligible applicants who meet the program requirements and receive the approval of the Minnesota SHPO and National Park Service.

Contact: Linda Pate, Preservation Specialist,

Federal Historic Rehabilitation Tax Credit–20%
Federal Agency: National Park Service, administered by the Minnesota State Historic Preservation Office (SHPO)

Recipients: Owners of commercial, industrial, agricultural, or rental residential properties

The Federal Government offers a variety of tax credits that assist preservation projects, notably a credit that is available only for rehabilitation of income-producing historic properties.  Under this historic preservation tax credit, property owners who rehabilitate historic buildings for commercial, industrial, agricultural, or rental residential purposes can receive a tax credit equal to 20 percent of the rehabilitation costs. The National Park Service must certify that the rehabilitation work meets the Secretary of the Interior’s Standards for Rehabilitation.

Other Federal tax credits can also be used in preservation projects and can be combined with the historic preservation tax credit.

Contact: Linda Pate, Preservation Specialist, Minnesota SHPO,

Preservation Easements

The term “preservation easement” is commonly used to describe a type of conservation easement – a private legal right given by the owner of a property to a qualified nonprofit organization or governmental entity for the purpose of protecting a property’s conservation and preservation values. Conservation easements are used to protect land that has outdoor recreational value, natural environmental value (including natural habitat), open space (including farmland, forest land, and land with scenic value), or land that has historic, architectural, or archaeological significance. Preservation easements are conservation easements whose principal purpose is to protect a property with historic, architectural, or archaeological significance, although the easement may also protect natural land values as part of a property’s historic setting.

Contact: Erin Hanafin Berg, Field Representative,