WASHINGTON – United States Senator Mary L. Landrieu, D-La., secured two key letters of support for extending the Gulf Opportunity (GO) Zone Low-Income Housing Tax Credit placed-in-service date through 2012. The Tax Relief, Unemployment Insurance Authorization and Job Creation Act of 2010, which passed the Senate in December, only extended the placed-in-service date for these credits through 2011. Without an additional year, nearly 5,000 Gulf Coast units would be unlikely to be completed and an estimated $1 billion of construction projects and related jobs would be in jeopardy. One of the letters of support for extending the placed-in-service date through 2012 is addressed to Sen. Landrieu and signed jointly by Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner and Housing and Urban Development Secretary Shaun Donovan. The letter offers assurances of the administration’s support for the extension.

The letter states: “… the Administration supports an additional year extension to December 31, 2012, of the GO Zone placed-in-service date and is committed to working with Congress to see that the extension is enacted as soon as possible.” Geithner and Donovan conclude: “We are confident that with your help we will be able to see an extension signed into law, and with it, continued economic activity and community redevelopment in the Katrina-affected Gulf Coast.” The second letter, from Louisiana Commissioner of Administration Paul W. Rainwater, is addressed to U.S. House Speaker John Boehner (R-Ohio), Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.), U.S. Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.) and Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.). Rainwater urges the congressional leaders to pass the extension. Rainwater writes: “The recovery of south Louisiana and the Gulf Coast can serve as an important model for other areas hit by catastrophic disasters. Securing the placed-in-service extension will serve as the fulfillment of our collective promise to bring Gulf Coast families home and rebuild smarter, more resilient communities.” Sen. Landrieu said: “Without this crucial extension of the placed-in-service deadline, efforts to finish many affordable housing projects along the Gulf Coast will come to a screeching halt. I am pleased to be working as part of a bipartisan, bicameral coalition to secure this extension in the coming weeks. These letters of support from the Obama Administration and Governor Jindal bolster these efforts by showing it is not a Republican or Democratic issue, it remains an issue of critical importance to countless Gulf Coast communities.”