By Jon Banister | Bisnow
The opportunity zone program has created tremendous buzz throughout the real estate industry over the last year, but many investors have been waiting on the sidelines until there is a complete set of federal regulations before deploying money into underserved areas.
The Internal Revenue Service sought feedback in creating the regulations at a five-hour hearing Thursday, during which over two dozen stakeholders highlighted concerns they have with the rules of the program and suggestions for how they can be improved. More than 200 people attended the hearing at the IRS headquarters in D.C., and agency officials had to turn away some who were not testifying after the hearing room reached capacity.
The interest in the opportunity zone program from the investment community has only continued to grow, said Steve Glickman, who helped design the program while leading the Economic Innovation Group. Last year, he launched his own opportunity zone consulting firm. But Glickman told the IRS regulators that the lack of clarity around the rules is preventing investment from happening.
“Yesterday’s Opportunity Zone hearing at the IRS headquarters in Washington, D.C. drew over 200 attendees, some of which had to be turned away once the room reached capacity. Many stakeholders testified about key issues left unresolved in the proposed regulations – we are hopeful these issues will be addressed in a second set of proposed regulations in the coming months.”