Malloy nominates three Norwalk census tracts for fed ‘opportunity zones’

A detail from a map of areas nominated by Gov. Dannel Malloy for the federal Opportunity Zone program, showing the Norwalk census tracts he says qualify for the program.

Gov. Dannel Malloy. (File photo)

NORWALK, Conn. – This is a press release, presented in the format in which it was sent:



72 Zones Chosen in 27 Municipalities Across the State


(HARTFORD, CT) – Governor Dannel P. Malloy today announced that his administration is nominating 72 opportunity zones across 27 municipalities in Connecticut.  These nominations were made as part of the federal government’s recently established Opportunity Zone Program to induce long-term investments in low-income communities.

“One of my administration’s top priorities has been the revitalization, reinvention and growth of our cities,” said Governor Malloy, who in February announced an application process for municipalities in the state that were interested in participating in the program.  “These opportunity zone nominations we have made will go a long way in encouraging new investment and development in areas that will be critical to Connecticut’s future.  I’d like to thank all of the towns that submitted applications, and congratulate those chosen for this exciting new program.”

The program provides a federal tax incentive for investors to re-invest unrealized capital gains into opportunity zones through opportunity funds.  Under the terms of the program, the governor of each state must submit a plan to the federal government designating up to 25 percent of the qualified census tracts in their state as opportunity zones, which is then subject to approval of the Secretary of the Treasury.

“We thank all of the participating municipalities for the hard work and careful planning that went into these applications,” said Commissioner Catherine Smith of the Department of Economic and Community Development, the state agency that is overseeing the application process.  “The 72 opportunity zones that we have nominated are ripe for redevelopment, and we hope this designation will encourage new investments in these areas and spur economic growth.”

Gov. Dannel Malloy’s list of Connecticut cities with nominated Opportunity Zones.

“In addition to the historic investment we’ve made under the Malloy administration when it comes to building, preserving, and rehabilitating affordable housing, these new opportunity zones will keep Connecticut on its continued path toward economic prosperity,” said Department of Housing Commissioner Evonne M. Klein.  “Incentivizing developers to build affordable housing makes good economic sense and a diverse housing stock is key to attracting business and people of all ages.  We’re already encouraging investment in our towns and cities and I’m confident these new designations will only help to expand on that progress.”

Qualified census tracts are those that have a poverty rate of at least 20 percent of a median income that does not exceed 80 percent of the area median income.  The opportunity fund model encourages investors to pool their resources in opportunity zones, increasing the scale of investments going to underserved areas.  These funds may seed new businesses, expand existing firms, or undertake real estate development.

Qualifying investments may include a broad range of commercial and residential investments, such as transit-oriented development, affordable housing and mixed-use development, and energy efficiency and renewable energy projects on public and private assets.  In exchange for their investments, opportunity fund investors are able to decrease their federal tax burden through the preferential treatment of capital gains.




A press release is an announcement drafted by an organization to publicize its news. NancyOnNorwalk takes no responsibility for the content of this press release.


SALT-y tears April 20, 2018 at 4:06 pm

Mr. SALT-y thinks Malloy is offering tasty tax incentives to developers, leaving my tax bill bloated, bland and tasteless. SALT-y says Norwalk doesn’t need Malloy’s extra seasoning to lure investers to create more “affordable” housing—affordable to whom? The people who already live in Norwalk are struggling to stay here. They don’t need developers getting presents to build apartments they can’t afford to rent. Last “mixed use” development here turned out to be 100% retail. No SALT-y added.

Bryan Meek April 21, 2018 at 6:41 am

Since unrealized capital gains are not taxable in the first place, how is it exactly a benefit? And while on the surface this looks like more Malloy and Rilling handouts, it’s actually Trumps plan to kick-start the inner cities that have been neglected since the Great Society was launched. This poorly written piece is what happens when you are spoon fed stories with political agenda behind them. While we are examining the tax code, we should also be mindful of the restrictions on non profit entities like this one that continue to engage in political activities. The intent of tax free revenues for non profits was created to benefit the likes of the Salvation Army, Red Cross, etc… Not for someone’s re-election bid.

Jason Milligan April 22, 2018 at 10:50 pm


You can read about the technical details here: http://eig.org/wp-content/uploads/2018/02/Opportunity-Zones-Fact-Sheet.pdf

The idea is that the program will allow people to delay or avoid tax that they would normally pay by investing the funds into “opportunity zones”.

Here is a link to a summary of how to make the most of the opportunity zone program. Our local leadership is key: http://thehill.com/opinion/finance/382135-local-leadership-is-key-for-successful-opportunity-zones

This is the wrong time to roll out a complicated local tax incentive program (Innovation District). The opportunity zone program has the exact same goals and it is a federal tax incentive program. The innovation district would be funded entirely with Norwalk tax money. Let’s keep our Norwalk tax dollars stashed away for now and see if this federal program can help us accomplish our goals.

Norwalk leaders will be needed to make the Opportunity Zone program work. Norwalk needs to compete hard with every other to attract the best and brightest investors to the area. Our leaders should be thinking hard about how to promote Norwalk as the destination for the opportunity funds to invest in. If it is easy for an outsider to understand a city’s vision, and if the approval process is straightforward, and if the investors are treated as welcome guests they will come.

Let’s get our POCD finished. Let’s clean up our zoning, and let’s audit the process for things to move through the various agencies. It can always be improved.

Let’s look at the cities we want to be like and let’s copy them!

Bryan Meek April 23, 2018 at 7:40 am

Jason, I agree a local district would muddy the waters and one thing our local leaders have proven time and again is that they just don’t get it anyway. Do you think this would be an avenue that someone with top heavy equities could switch into as a tax shelter, or is this potentially an easier bypass on section 1031 type exchanges? Do you know of any in action or about to happen? Or is it just too early right now, only having been a few months (looks like our state took the month delay allowed, figures)?

Patrick Cooper April 23, 2018 at 7:48 pm

Can any of the NoN “informed” conspiracy theorists weigh in on the timing of the “innovation district” currently fast-tracked by the CC (Kydes), noted by @Isabelle Hargrove in these very comments section on April 16th, and the news of this Fed program. No less than a big-time winner against the house says it’s a dumb idea. I’d listen. Think that Harry – our Governor’s most loyal municipal domicile, didn’t know? Mr. Coppola currently serves as the Chairman of the Connecticut Bar Association (“CBA”) Planning and Zoning Section. Think he didn’t know?

So what’s up? Land use decisions made back-room is the biggest issue in the city. I would hope our media would see the smoking gun – and focus on this. The BOE is trying to save this city – these shenanigans are what is really killing this city. I swear this whole thing smells RICO.

Rayj April 23, 2018 at 10:24 pm

Making out that the heart of Norwalk is a poverty zone that needs more affordable housing is insane. I don’t think Malloy consulted with anyone that knows Norwalk before he took out his sharpie, closed his eyes and scribed X marks the spot. What , we’re just 1 shy of Waterbury? Opportunity ? Or payback ?

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