The Tax Cuts and Jobs Act of 2017 included the creation of a new tax-incentive aimed at increasing private investment in low income census tracts. Investors in these zones will receive preferential tax treatment when they invest in a newly created “Opportunity Fund.”
After undergoing a process that was recognized as a best practice, Governor Phil Scott designated 25 census tracts in 17 communities as Opportunity Zones (click here to view map).
The Agency of Commerce and Community Development is working with the communities to take full advantage of the Opportunity Zone program.
In June, the Agency held an Opportunity Zone Summit that aimed to educate communities, investors, and potential project champions about the program. Deputy Secretary Ted Brady provided an outline of how the zones were selected in Vermont. Kenan Fikri of the Economic Innovation Group provided a national perspective. Stephen Trenholm of Gallagher, Flynn & Co. outlined the anticipated tax benefits. And Craig Miskovich of Downs Rachlin Martin provided a Vermont developer’s perspective.
In October of 2018, the Internal Revenue Service and the IRS issued a draft rule concerning the Opportunity Zone program, a revised revenue regulation, and a new draft tax form used to create an Opportunity Fund.
Additional resources concerning the designation of Opportunity Zones can be found below.