"Kentucky will maximize this golden chance to attract economic development projects to communities most in need across the commonwealth, and the Kentucky Opportunity Zone Initiative will strengthen and rebuild both rural and urban areas"
Matt Bevin
- Governor Matt Bevin -

About

A Kentucky Opportunity Zone is a low income U.S. Census tract that encourages individuals and corporations to invest in a variety of economic development projects through "Opportunity Funds"

These areas in Kentucky - both urban and rural - have been classified as low-income or undeveloped. In fact, over half the communities eligible for designation as Opportunity Zones had fewer jobs and fewer businesses in 2015 than in 2000.

Opportunity zones were created by Congress to encourage long-term investments in low income urban and rural communities nationwide.

In Kentucky, 144 sites in 84 counties have been designated as Opportunity Zones. Learn more about the benefits of Opportunity Zones below.

HOW KENTUCKY ZONES WERE CHOSEN


The selection of Kentucky’s Opportunity Zones was a multi-step, data-driven process.

First, the independently created Enterprise Mapping Tool was used to identify census tracts based on five economic indicators: housing stability, education, mobility, economic security, and health.

Second, the Cabinet for Economic Development sent a Request for Information (“RFI”) inviting officials in all 120 counties to submit zones for consideration. The submitted responses, many of them regional, included information about hundreds of census tracts from across Kentucky. These responses were overlaid on the map from Step 1 to account for local input and preferences.

Third, the Enterprise Mapping Tool was used to identify and add eligible tracts that had received New Market Tax Credit Investments. Opportunity Zones are intended to be complimentary to the New Market Tax Credits program, and these tracts have also demonstrated that they can attract investments.

Fourth, proposed tracts that were identified in Steps 1 and 3 for which no response to the Request for Information was received were removed. These were replaced with tracts from counties who did submit RFI responses but did not yet have a selected tract included in the proposal. Every county who submitted an RFI response had at least one census tract designated. This was to again account for local input and preferences.

Selected tracts were evaluated against census information to ensure they met federal requirements for designation as an Opportunity Zone. Governor Bevin submitted Kentucky’s nominations to the U.S. Treasury Department on March 21, 2018. On April 9, 2018, the U.S. Treasury Department certified Governor Bevin’s nominations, officially designating 144 Kentucky areas as "Opportunity Zones".

Opportunity Zones are spread across Kentucky, with one or more Opportunity Zones being within driving distance of all Kentuckians.

KENTUCKY OPPORTUNITY ZONES

How to use this map:

The highlighted counties on the map below include one or more opportunity zones.

1. To see if a particular address is located within an Opportunity Zone, type in the address in the box on the upper right corner area of the map.
2. To zoom into street level in a particular county, click repeatedly on that county until you reach the area you wish to view.

Red dot = available industrial sites in an opportunity zone
Blue dot = available industrial buildings in an industrial zone

TAX BENEFITS FOR INVESTORS


Opportunity Zones provide significant tax benefits for investors.

The Opportunity Zones program is designed to incentivize patient capital investments in low-income communities nationwide. All of the underlying incentives relate to the tax treatment of capital gains, and all are tied to the longevity of an investor’s stake in a qualified Opportunity Fund, providing the Available funds will come from an estimated $2.2 trillion of unrealized capital gains in stocks and mutual funds held by individuals and corporations Opportunity Zone investors can defer and possibly reduce their federal tax liability on the sale of appreciated assets if they place their gains into a new vehicle called an Opportunity Fund. These funds then channel pooled capital into equity investments in small businesses and real estate in distressed communities.

NOTE: More detailed information on the tax benefits for investors is available below:

 

More Info

What Happens Next?
The U.S. Treasury Department is formulating specific rules and guidelines for accessing Opportunity Zone benefits. This information will be posted on this site as soon as it is made available.
Kentucky Cabinet for Economic Development
Old Capitol Annex
300 West Broadway
Frankfort, KY 40601

Email: econdev@ky.gov
Phone: 502-564-7670 or 1-800-626-2930
Fax: 502-564-3256