On April 20, 2018 Gov. Jay Inslee approved 139 census tracts in 36 counties for “Opportunity Zone” status, enabling them to offer special federal tax breaks to encourage development and job creation. In total, 11 tracts (yellow in below map) were approved in Spokane County.
The U.S. Tax Cuts and Jobs Act of 2017 established a new federal tax incentive to encourage long-term investments in certain low-income communities. The “Opportunity Zone” designation allows private investment in these communities from new “Opportunity Funds.”
Private investment from an Opportunity Fund within an Opportunity Zone may earn tax relief on both the capital gains invested in the fund, and gains generated through the investment by the fund. Up to 25 percent of low-income census tracts in each state can be designated as an Opportunity Zone.
The US Treasury Department and the Internal Revenue Service are still in the rulemaking process for Qualified Opportunity Funds, and details will be released soon.