President Trump Coming To Charlotte Today For The ‘Opportunity Now’ Summit

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President Donald Trump will be visiting the Queen City today.

He’s speaking at an event in Charlotte on Friday call the “North Carolina Opportunity Now Summit”. The event will be held at CPCC from 9:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. (expect significant traffic delays between the airport and the college during that time).

The Summit will include presentations and speeches by leaders from the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) and the White House Opportunity and Revitalization Council regarding the new ‘Opportunity Zones Program’.

In 2017 President Trump signed into law the Opportunity Zones program alongside his new tax policy legislation. The program allows outside investors to defer or even eliminate capital gains taxes through investing in low-income areas.

According to The North Carolina Department of Commerce, investors who participate in the program can specifically receive 3 key federal tax incentives:

  • Temporary tax deferral for capital gains reinvested in an Opportunity Fund
  • Step-up in basis for capital gains reinvested in an Opportunity Fund
  • Permanent exclusion from taxable income of long-term capital gains

North Carolina currently has designated a total of 252 ‘Opportunity Zones’, with 37 of them located around the Charlotte region;

Since the new policy was created, there has been significantly more investment pumped into low income areas around the Carolinas. One of the biggest local projects taking advantage of the new policy is Charlotte-based CitiSculpt’s eponymous project in Greenville, which will include a 262-unit apartment complex, a 60,000-square-foot office building, and a 130-room hotel.

Last year, the Brookings Institute released an exhaustive study on now the new policy will likely affect low income communities.

The study found significant issues in the way the legislation was written, allowing for significant tax benefits for outside investors without requiring that they help or benefit anyone living inside of the zones.

“There were some obvious flaws in the way this was designed,” Brookings economist Adam Looney says. “You can build anything for any purpose and get the tax break.”

The study noted numerous examples of opportunity-zone projects that could even hurt those living inside the zones, including high-end apartment complexes, self-storage facilities, and massive solar-power farms.

What are your thoughts on the new ‘Opportunity Zones Program’?

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