Jamestown Opportunity Zone a missed opportunity

4 Oct 2019

Opportunity Zones in four south central North Dakota communities have gone unused although the incentives have "tremendous potential," said James Leiman, director of economic development and finance for the North Dakota Department of Commerce.

Opportunity Zones came out of the federal Tax Cut and Jobs Act of 2017 and allow people to defer and reduce capital gains tax from the sale of investment property by reinvesting those profits in selected "Opportunity Zones."

There are 25 Opportunity Zones in North Dakota including Ellendale, Jamestown, Linton and Valley City. All have yet to see the first project. Don Frye, economic development director for Ellendale, said it could be investors avoiding the small towns.

"People who have the resources for this program are not receptive to investing in rural communities," he said.

Leiman said the program is sound.

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