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Business & Economy

‘Opportunity Zones’ in West Ky Encourage Economic Development In Low-Income Areas

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The U.S. Department of the Treasury is certifying 15 'Opportunity Zones' in far west Kentucky.

The program offers tax incentives to encourage investors to set-up shop in low-income areas.

 

The Kentucky Cabinet for Economic Development invited representatives from each county to identify potential zones.

 

The selection process included U.S. Census data, which was used to see if the areas met federal requirements for the program.

 

These tracts included five economic indicators: mobility, economic security, health, housing stability and education.

 

Zones in west Kentucky include locations in Ballard, Carlisle, Fulton, Graves, Calloway, McCracken, Webster, Hopkins, Muhlenberg, Christian, Ohio and Todd counties. There are 144 sites in 84 counties statewide.

 

Governor Matt Bevin said in a release that the zones will “attract economic development projects to communities most in need across the commonwealth.”

 
The program was established in the federal Tax Cuts and Jobs Act of 2017. The bill said taxpayers would be able to "temporarily defer the recognition of capital gains that are invested in opportunity zones." It goes on to explain that "investments in opportunity zones or opportunity funds that are held for at least five years are eligible for capital gains, tax reductions or exemptions, depending on how long the investment is held."

 
 

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