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PILOT Program

The purpose of Montgomery County’s Payment in Lieu of Taxes (PILOT) program, essentially a tax abatement, is to support the construction and preservation of affordable multifamily rental housing.

A PILOT lowers, or in some circumstances completely abates, for a period of years, the County’s real property taxes on rental housing projects located in the County in return for a property owner’s commitment to provide affordable housing.

Unless otherwise waived by the application jurisdiction, a property owner who receives a PILOT from the County must pay all State real property taxes, municipal taxes, front foot benefit charges, and other applicable fees.

The Standard PILOT program provides a real property tax abatement in exchange for providing affordable units to low-income residents. The amount of the tax abatement and its terms are negotiated based on the number of affordable units and the duration of their affordability.

The “by right” PILOT abates all County real property taxes for a term of at least 15 years for a rental property owned or controlled by a non-profit if at least 50% of the units are leased to households with incomes no greater than 60% of the area median income (AMI).

The Washington Metropolitan Area Transit Authority (WMATA) PILOT applies to new construction, high-rise residential developments that include at least 50% rental housing and are built on property leased from WMATA in the County. For qualified projects, the WMATA PILOT exempts 100% of the real property tax for 15 years.

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