Murfreesboro, TN (Rutherford County) –Rutherford County has made history…PUN-INTENDED! Tuesday, November 12, the Historic Property Tax Abatement Board voted to approve the County’s first historical property tax abatement since the program’s inception September 1.

Bonnie Black was notified Thursday morning that her application had been approved and told she would soon be receiving the written approval from Mayor Bill Ketron’s office. Black’s historical property, the “Fulgham-Nuell House,”located at 513 N Maney Avenue is believed to have been built around 1876.

Black’s property assessment will freeze for a ten year period at its current rate, but only if Black completes the necessary requirements which includes a renovation project that must cost a minimum of 20 percent of the current assessment for the structure. In her case, Black will be replacing windows on the south side of the house. She also expects to do foundation repair and scraping/painting of the south and front sides of the house.

As part of the application process, Black had to provide a detailed description of the project and explain how the project will further historic preservation. She also had to submit an estimate of the project cost and a commencement and completion schedule.

Another stipulation for approval was for Black to agree to periodic access and inspection of project work during the abatement period, as well as for compliance and educational purposes.

“I’m grateful to have received approval for the County’s new program,”said Black. “I like old houses and my structure’s proximity to downtown. These historic wooden or brick structures need regular maintenance and improvements to be structurally sound and attractive.  Their existence serves as a link to Murfreesboro’s rich cultural history.  This program recognizes a homeowner’s private effort in historic preservation and the dwellings are an asset that make the city more interesting. Hopefully, I will be the first of a number of applicants for this new program.”

Rutherford County was the first in Tennessee to establish a property tax abatement program in accordance with TN Code §67-5-218 (2017). “Metro Nashville is now following suite in an effort to incentivize property owners to restore and maintain their historical treasures,”said Rutherford County Tax Assessor Rob Mitchell.

“The people of Rutherford County have made a commitment to protecting and understanding our shared history and heritage,”said Rutherford County Historian Greg Tucker of the tax abatement program. “Local history is not only popular today, but it is clearly good business…It touches where we live, work, and socialize. [It] encourages civic pride and can often entertain and explain…The best evidence of our local history is what remains to remind and instruct.”

If you would like more information about the Historic Property Tax Abatement Program, its requirements, or the application process, please visit https://rcpatn.com/historical-properties-tax-abatement.html or contact the Property Assessor’s Office at 615-898-7750.