AFR joins the Civil Rights Movement and the nation in mourning the passing of John Lewis. We celebrate his leadership, his outsized contributions to the struggle for racial and economic justice – until the very end of his life – and his steadfastness in demanding and defending a more robust democracy. His work as a legislator with a strong moral compass advanced all these strands of work and highlighted the relationship between them all.
News Release: Opportunity Zones will worsen affordable housing crisis, displace Black and Brown residents
The Opportunity Zone tax break is likely to exacerbate the affordable housing crisis and displace residents of color and lower-income residents while rewarding rich real estate investors with a lucrative tax break, according to a new report by the Alliance of Californians for Community Empowerment Institute, Americans for Financial Reform Education Fund, Kansas City Tenants, and New York Communities for Change.
The Opportunity Zone (O-Zone) tax break was created by the 2017 Republican tax cut legislation. It was promoted as a way to incentivize investment in economically disadvantaged areas but it is marred by poor design and flawed implementation so that it will most likely provide tax breaks for investments in already booming cities and gentrifying neighborhoods. The program incentivizes investments that aim to maximize returns in lower-income areas where residents are vulnerable to economic displacement pressures.
AFREF joined a letter to FHFA expressing that rather than imposing punitive measures on consumers, FHFA and Enterprises should use their authority and influence over the housing finance market to incentivize PACE lenders and state actors to enhance consumer protections and adopt policies that limit risk to the Enterprises.