February 2, 2017
WASHINGTON – Columbus-area GOP Rep. Pat Tiberi wants to use tax reform legislation to steer investment towards urban and rural areas bypassed by past economic recovery.
On Thursday, Tiberi and a bipartisan group of Congress members introduced legislation that would defer capital gains tax payments on investments channeled into “opportunity zones” in census tracts with high levels of poverty, unemployment and vacant housing.
Data released last year by the Economic Innovation Group ranked Cleveland as the nation’s top city with residents living in economically distressed zip codes, Tiberi said. He said Appalachian sections of Ohio need similar help.
“Success in your life shouldn’t be determined by where you’re born and where you live,” said Tiberi “It shouldn’t determine the investment that goes on in the community but unfortunately, as we’ve seen over the years, the economic recovery was quite uneven.”
The “Investing in Opportunity Act” that Tiberi re-introduced Thursday with U.S. Senators Tim Scott, a South Carolina Republican, Cory Booker, a New Jersey Democrat, and Ron Kind, a Wisconsin Democrat, would also create “opportunity funds” where investors could pool their resources to invest in areas that need it.
Tiberi said money could be used to build projects such as grocery stores that would produce jobs and stimulate more investment. No tax credits or public-sector financing would be involved.
Scott said he recently discussed the legislation with Vice President Mike Pence and President Donald Trump’s nominee for Housing and Urban Development Secretary Ben Carson and both were supportive.
“We are not asking for a new federal program,” said Scott. “We all have the same goal – to help people that need help.”