HUD Secretary Carson to Lead New ‘Opportunity and Revitalization Council’

President Trump recently signed an executive order establishing the White House Opportunity and Revitalization Council. The council will be chaired by HUD Secretary Ben Carson. It consists of representatives from 13 federal member agencies. And the council will consider legislative proposals and undertake regulatory reform to remove barriers to revitalization efforts and present the president with options to encourage capital investment in economically distressed communities.

Opportunity Zones, which were created by the 2017 Tax Cuts and Jobs Act, are distressed communities where capital gains tax relief will be provided to individuals and corporations that invest in them. The council will assess actions each federal agency can take under existing authorities to focus federal programs in Opportunity Zones. It will also assess actions agencies can take to minimize regulatory and administrative costs. The council will regularly consult state, local, and tribal officials, as well as individuals in the private sector.

Currently, there are approximately 380,000 Public Housing units and approximately 340,000 Project-Based Rental Assistance units within Opportunity Zones. Nearly a third of the more than 100,000 rental units preserved through HUD’s Rental Assistance Demonstration (RAD) are located in Opportunity Zones.