Opportunity Zones are a new community development program established by Congress in the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act of 2017 to encourage long-term investments in areas such as Chippewa Falls. The Opportunity Zones program provides a tax incentive for investors to re-invest their unrealized capital gains into qualified Opportunity Funds that are organized and dedicated to investing into officially designated Opportunity Zones designated by the Governor.

The program uses low-income community census tracts to determine areas eligible for Opportunity Zone designation. Governors in each state are authorized to designate up to 25 percent of the total number of low-income census tracts in their states as Opportunity Zones. The U.S. Department of the Treasury will make the final decision on designate Opportunity Zones based on Governor Walkers submitted recommendations.

“The Chippewa County Economic Development Corporation (CCEDC) advocated for several census tracks within Chippewa County to be considered for the Opportunity Zone designation, and is excited that Governor Walker recommended Chippewa Falls as one of the 120 designated /recommended Opportunity Zones across 44 counties in rural, urban, and tribal areas of Wisconsin” stated Charlie Walker, President and CEO

A qualified Opportunity Fund is a privately managed investment vehicle organized as a corporation or a partnership for the purpose of investing in qualified opportunity zones such one recommended for Chippewa Falls, Wisconsin. Under the new community development tax incentive program, investors will receive a temporary tax deferral when they re-invest unrealized capital gains in designated Opportunity Zones.

Upon releasing his recommendations, Gov. Walker said, “We are excited to embrace Economic Opportunity Zones as a new tool to build on our track record of economic growth. These recommendations reach communities across our state – urban, rural, and tribal – that are positioned for strong and sustained growth.”