Opportunity Zones: The Latest Attempt to Support Low-Income Communities: Is There a Role for MBEs?

Dr. Fred McKinney

The Tax Cut and Jobs Act of 2017 is the defining economic law passed by the current administration. Most of the attention and focus of the law has been on cuts in corporate taxes and taxes on high-income individuals. Some would argue that the law cuts taxes for every taxpayer, but the non-partisan Tax Policy Center estimates that taxpayers with more than $733,000 in income can expect a $50,000 reduction in their taxes. In contrast, a taxpayer with $50,000 in income might expect a reduction in taxes of less than $500, one hundred times less than the high–income person in this example. This discrepancy is leading to increase in income and wealth inequality as well as a ballooning for the federal debt and deficit. But a lesser known and discussed part of the law is the section that creates Opportunity Zones.

Opportunity Zones were supported by Corey Booker, a Democrat, and Tim Scott, a republican, both African-American U.S. Senators. The law...

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