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Treasury releases Opportunity Zone Guidance, states begin releasing RFIs

February 15, 2018

The IRS and CDFI Fund released their first guidance for the federal Opportunity Zones incentive. This wave of guidance addresses zone selection issues only — the most important clarification is that the certification window will expire on March 21, with the option to request one 30-day extension. The guidance includes a list of all eligible census tracts, which were covered by SSTI last week, as well as a list of tracts that are not low-to-moderate income but may be included in contiguous Qualified Opportunity Zones.

While the statute assigns the responsibility for selecting Qualified Opportunity Zones to the states, some states are requesting input for their selection processes from local governments and other stakeholders. At least two states have made public announcements for their process: Colorado is working with existing Enterprise Zone administrators and requesting input from interested investors, and Missouri is collecting formal feedback from local governments only.

The Opportunity Zone incentive was authorized by the recent tax law, after a bill introduced by Sens. Tim Scott (R-SC) and Cory Booker (D-NJ) and Reps. Pat Tiberi (R-OH) and Ron Kind (D-WI) with support from the Economic Innovation Group

tax rules, opportunity zones