The Empowerment Zone Initiative created an opportunity for economic rejuvenation and job creation for communities across America. Enacted in 1993, its purpose was to create jobs in the most economically distressed areas of urban and rural areas through tax incentives and grants.
Congress authorized three competitions in 1994, 1998, and 2001. The Empowerment Zone designations originally ended on December 31, 2009; however, The Tax Relief, Unemployment Insurance Reauthorization, and Job Creation Act of 2010 allowed for the extension of the Empowerment Zone designations (including the DC EZ) to December 31, 2011.
Following the end of the first EZ designation extension on December 31, 2011, the American Taxpayer Relief Act (ATRA) of 2012, signed into law by President Obama on January 2, 2013, provided for an extension of the Empowerment Zone designations until December 31, 2013. The ATRA of 2012 did not extend the designation of the DC Enterprise Zone.
In line with IRS Notice 2013-38, the Empowerment Zones (EZ) were directed to contact the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) by July 29, 2013 if they did not want to accept the EZ designation extension. The list provided in the table below includes the EZs that have elected to accept the EZ designation extension provided through § 327(c) of the American Taxpayer Relief Act of 2012, Pub. L. 112-240, 126 Stat. 2313 (January 2, 2013) (ATRA).
Under the latest tax credit extension, businesses in these EZ communities have the opportunity to utilize the available EZ tax incentives until December 31, 2014 and for more information about each tax incentive please refer to the updated EZ Tax Incentives Summary Chart.
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