by Ron Gregory
Capitol rumors say Kanawha Delegate Eric Nelson is considering a run for Charleston mayor in the next election. Nelson, who is given credit for singlehandedly defeating a bill that would have increased the state’s tax credit for historic building renovations, would be seeking the Republican nomination.
Democrat Amy Goodwin has already entered the race. Current Mayor Danny Jones has announced his intention to retire at the end of his present term. Jones is an Independent.
“Maybe Eric thinks he can destroy redevelopment in Charleston more effectively as mayor than in the house,” one local real estate developer said.
The bill which Nelson opposed would have increased the state’s tax credit to 25 percent once a historic project is complete. It is currently ten percent. Proponents of the legislation have said that neighboring states all offer a larger credit than West Virginia. The federal government provides a 20 percent credit on such projects.
The state is not obligated to give the credit until both the state and federal government have certified that a building has been restored to historic standards.