These zones are designed to draw long-term capital investments into poverty-stricken communities. In Birmingham, 30.9 percent of residents live at or below the poverty line. The program provides a federal tax incentive for investors to re-invest their unrealized capital gains into Opportunity Funds dedicated for investing in designated Opportunity Zones.
Councilor John Hilliard, who chairs the Economic Development Committee, said he is excited about the potential investments in Birmingham’s neighborhoods that are currently struggling with high rates of poverty.
“Rather than worry about the Amazons of the world and recruiting them here, we need to grow and create our own Amazons,” Hilliard said. “This is a window for small businesses. They can become the next big thing. To our small business people, take note of this and get involved and take advantage of these Opportunity Zones.”
In Alabama, 629 of the state’s 1,181 census tracts are categorized as low-income and are therefore eligible for the designation. Out of those 629 eligible tracts, the state was able to nominate 158 as Opportunity Zones, roughly 25 percent of the eligible land. Alabama was one of the first states to nominate these zones and the submissions now wait approval from the U.S. Department of Treasury.
- See the entire story here! https://medium.com/@bhamcitycouncil/birmingham-has-24-opportunity-zones-submitted-by-governor-ivey-fc0a94144a20
This press release is a contribution from Cody Owens in the Birmingham City Council Public Information Office. For media inquiries please contact Birmingham City Council Interim Director of Public Information Chiara Perry at 205.383.8432.