Part of the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act of 2017, Opportunity Zones are designed to lift up distressed communities by incentivizing investment in the neighborhoods long neglected by investors. The goal is to grow businesses and create jobs to bring opportunity to places that need it most. The White House Council of Economic Advisers (CEA) published a new report on Monday detailing an initial evaluation of the impact of Opportunity Zones. The report made the following findings:
- The neighborhoods selected as Opportunity Zones have an average poverty rate that is double that of all other communities.
- Qualified Opportunity Funds have raised $75 billion in private capital, most of which would not have been invested in these communities without the Opportunity Zone incentive.
- The CEA report estimates that the capital already raised could lift 1 million people out of poverty and decrease the poverty rate in Opportunity Zones by 11%.
This is incredible progress in a short amount of time and comes despite the economic challenges of the ongoing global pandemic. The Opportunity Zone incentive is an innovative effort designed to combat poverty in local communities. Opportunity Zones also have an important role to play in helping America recover from the unprecedented economic challenges caused by Covid-19.
The Bottom Line: Opportunity Zones are making a difference in the communities that need it most and the best is yet to come.
Read the full report here.