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Ways and Means Republicans Announce New Focus on Opportunity Zones Helping Communities

February 24, 2020

WASHINGTON—Tax reform changed the trajectory of the economy, paving the way for more jobs, bigger paychecks, and greater opportunity for communities.

Now, areas of the country that have been left behind in the past are getting new attention thanks to a provision in tax reform called “Opportunity Zones.” Already, Opportunity Zones have sparked investment into hundreds of distressed areas.

Some critics want to reverse tax reform, including the Opportunity Zone provision, before its impact is fully known. But providing support for these communities shouldn’t be left to Washington bureaucrats and politicians—attracting private investment is just one more path to prosperity.

To make this case, Ways and Means Republicans are launching a new series to highlight how Opportunity Zones are working and benefiting communities across the country, regardless of party.

Making Housing More Affordable

Long-Vacant Building Undergoing Transformation into Workforce Housing Thanks to Opportunity Zones

Thanks to Opportunity Zone investment, the City of Birmingham, Alabama will see a once vacant building turned into housing for an emerging workforce.

The Stonewall Building has been vacant for nearly 40 years. But with the help of Opportunity Zones, the building will be converted into 140 one- and two-bedroom apartments aimed at providing affordable, workforce housing in downtown Birmingham.

As part of the conversion, five units will be reserved for rental to clients of the Dannon Project, a local non-profit that provides services for underemployed or unemployed residents. Investors and city officials hope this will serve as a model for other cities looking to create sustainable inclusive growth opportunities.

You can read more about the project here.