Sometimes you need a little help to take advantage of an opportunity. That’s the idea behind a program to attract private investment through federal capital gains tax incentives. The goal is to create opportunity zones for low income communities, both urban and rural.
“This is an opportunity for investors to come in and put money into community that maybe they wouldn’t have before. So you know the downside is is that we were eligible because of such a high poverty rate but in this instance you know it’s nice to see the federal government coming in and giving this assistance to the small-towns,” said Vermillion County Redevelopment Executive Director, Dylan Riggen
For Vermillion County the Opportunity Zone is Downtown Clinton.
“The city has got a lot of opportunities and we have some vacant downtown buildings we hope we can fill with this and there’s some houses that we hope we can you know get back on the tax roll in this program,” said Riggen
Vigo County applied for five zones and was granted three. Downtown Terre Haute, US-41 near Poplar, and State Road 46 have all been approved.
“They are areas that have, we feel like they have tremendous potential partner development or redevelopment. They are largely characterized by lower income populations, a lot of other distress factors,” said Vigo County Redevelopment Executive Director, Steve Witt.
Officials don’t expect the opportunity zones to create new business out of thin air but help sweeten the pot for those already looking in the respective areas.
“I’ve described it as having another arrow in our quiver if you will to assist a potential developer that can take advantage of these tax credits. It could help fill a gap in financing for a new project opportunity or something,” said Witt.
Knox County has been granted two areas. One centered in the heart of Vincennes, while the second area stretches a bit north of the city. The middle of Washington is nominated for Daviess County. While Putnam County has a large area covering several communities including Cloverdale and part of Putnamville.