Originally introduced in the Investing in Opportunity Act (IIOA), the Opportunity Zones Program was enacted as part of the 2017 tax reform package (Tax Cuts and Jobs Act). The program is designed to drive long-term capital to rural and low-income urban communities throughout the nation, and uses tax incentives to encourage private investment in impact funds.
Here is a set of links that provide valuable background and context to what an Opportunity Zone Fund is and why it matters to stakeholders in cities and towns interested in new forms of economic development and inclusive growth.
LISC – Local Initiatives Support Core
LISC’s mission is “With residents and partners, LISC forges resilient and inclusive communities of opportunity across America – great places to live, work, visit, do business and raise families.” Provides an Opportunity Zone 101 and FAQs:
Bruce Katz, author of the New Localism
Formerly head of the Metropolitan Program at Brookings, Mr. Katz now heads up the Nowak Metro Finance Lab at Drexel and has written extensively about Opportunity Zones
- Guiding Principals for Opportunity Zones
- How Cities Maximize Opportunity Zones
- Seizing the Opportunity of Opportunity Zones
EIG (Economic Innovation Group)
The EIG covers opportunity zones extensively; this is a bipartisan group with a mission to “to advance solutions that empower entrepreneurs and investors to forge a more dynamic economy throughout America.”
Accelerator for America
Accelerator for America is a group set founded in 2017 by Rick Jacobs with Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti, Accelerator which seeks to “scale and replicate local solutions to economic insecurity across the country.”
- There’s a short video on their role in the ecosystem available on this page:
- See also this page for a set of tools relevant to cities and their development of prospectus to drive investment capital: AfA Tools
Tax & Real Estate Implications Implications
- Opportunity Zones: Rules finally come out, and yup, they’re complex (but manageable)
- These Low-Income Communities Should Prepare for an Influx of Cash
- Property Prices Jump 20 Percent in U.S. Communities Named Opportunity Zones
- Cadre (Real Estate investment platform) 101 on Opportunity Zones
- Math for investment in Opportunity Zone Fund versus a REIT – note that we don’t agree with this math … one of the biggest issues is that fees on most OZ funds are at 1% not 2%
List of Qualified Opportunity Zone Funds
Other players in the data ecosystem around Opportunity Zones that we can introduce you to that may be pertinent:
We are happy to make the necessary introductions here.