Opportunity zone designation to help southeast Scottsbluff development

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SCOTTSBLUFF, Neb. (by Release / KNEP) - Southeastern Scottsbluff could be in line for some specialized federal funding that could help produce more economic development in the area.

Governor Pete Ricketts this week named the census tract as one of the federal opportunity zones in the state, and the only one west of North Platte. The tract is in an area general south of Highway 26, and bounded on the west side by E. 20th Street to 5th Avenue, south to East Overland, west to Broadway and south to the North Platte River.

The area will be eligible to receive investments through a new federal program meant to spur development. Parties who invest in opportunity funds can benefit from tax incentives, such as deferrals on capital gains tax.

Scottsbluff Economic Development Director Starr Lehl said she received the good news by a phone call from Department of Economic Development Director, Dave Rippe adding that the city is excited and anxious to start the ball rolling on investment opportunities in the census tract. Complete guidelines have not yet been released by the Federal Government but are expected soon.