State and county officials are promoting a new economic development revitalization program that aims to attract investors who want to reduce taxes on capital gains to invest in designated opportunity zones throughout Delaware, including five zones in Sussex County.
Among the state’s 25 zones are three in Seaford and one each in Georgetown and Laurel. Under the program, investors can contribute capital gains in opportunity zone projects including housing, mixed use, transportation, infrastructure and projects with social impact. Investors who contribute may defer payment taxed on their capital gains until Dec. 31, 2026; after seven years reduce the tax owed by up to 15 percent; and eliminate tax on gains earned from the opportunity fund if the investment is held 10 years.
Patty Cannon, director of special projects for Delaware Division of Small Business, which coordinates the state program, was one of the speakers March 22 at an opportunity zones seminar hosted by Sussex County Economic Development. Cannon said the zones are in areas where developers would not likely invest without the financial incentives built into the program.
Pfaff said the designation and other incentives, such as the county’s new economic development zones and Delaware’s Downtown Development District programs, can be combined to make investing in the designated areas even more beneficial.