Opportunity zones listed for region

Wednesday, May 02, 2018

Nine of 120 Economic Opportunity Zones Gov. Scott Walker wants to create in Wisconsin are in west-central Wisconsin, including three in the city of Eau Claire.

The zones are a designation allowed under the new federal tax law designed to spur development in low-income areas by creating a tax incentive for investment by businesses and individuals.

The Republican governor on Wednesday released the recommended list of zones he is sending to the U.S. Department of Treasury, which will make the final designations that will be in effect for a decade. The suggested zones are in 44 counties across the state, including urban, rural and tribal areas.

Other regional zones that made the preliminary list include one in Chippewa Falls, one in Menomonie, two in Rice Lake, one in River Falls and one in Ladysmith. 

The potential Eau Claire Opportunity Zones would be in the central downtown business district, an area encompassing the Randall Park neighborhood and the portion of Menomonie Street where the Sonnentag Event and Recreation Complex is planned, and the North Riverfront neighborhood along the east side of the Chippewa River plus an area along Madison and Birch streets, according to Mike Schatz, the city’s economic development administrator.

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