No doubt a $5,000 federal income tax credit - not a deduction, but an outright tax credit - for people buying homes would help Chautauqua County's economy. It would help just about any community, for that matter.
But the vast majority of Americans don't qualify for it. Only those buying their first homes in Washington, D.C., do.
That's right: The Internal Revenue Service has a special tax credit for people who buy homes in Washington, D.C. They can have owned homes elsewhere previously, just as long as they haven't purchased before in the District. The credit is $2,500 for individuals and $5,000 for couples filing joint tax returns.
It is not new. The credit has been around for several years, giving residents of the country's biggest "company town" a benefit no one else can claim. The "company" in this case is the federal government.
Wrong? You bet. Again, however, the credit has been renewed several times down through the years. It is one more example of why our government is badly broken.