As part of the 2017 tax reform package, the federal Opportunity Zone program was enacted to incentivize investment in low-income communities. The program provides investors with favorable treatment of reinvested capital gains and the potential for tax forgiveness on new capital gains if they invest in specific census tracts designated by each state.

This new economic development tool requires the set-up of a Qualified Opportunity Fund as an investment vehicle. A recognized capital gain can be invested in that fund with an election to defer or reduce the tax on that gain, potentially eliminating it over the investment period. Opportunity Zones were included in the tax law by Senator Tim Scott of South Carolina and supported by Sean Parker and the Economic Innovation Group, the DC-based think tank.

Opportunity zones provide investors with the possibility to spur economic development in economically-distressed communities while also receiving tax benefits. The IRS has provided a Frequently Asked Questions page for the Opportunity Zone program, while the U.S. Department of the Treasury has outlined a set of Opportunity Zone resources including a list and map of the zones.

Are you interested in investing in Opportunity Zones and curious to learn more? Access/Information can provide potential investors with data-driven research to identify specific opportunities that match interest and impact.