Gov. Wolf nominates 300 census tracts for investor tax breaks

The Wolf administration has nominated 300 census tracts across Pennsylvania as eligible areas for tax breaks under a new federal program designed to attract more investments to low-income neighborhoods.

Pennsylvania’s list, which includes 20 tracts in Central Pennsylvania, will now go to the U.S. Treasury Department for approval under its Opportunity Zone program. The Treasury is expected to certify the new zones under the national incentive program in May.

Gov. Tom Wolf’s submission includes six census tracts in Harrisburg, five in York, four in Lancaster, two each in Columbia and Lebanon and one in Carlisle.

To see the full list of Pennsylvania nominations, click here.

The new $1.5 billion Opportunity Zone program, introduced as part of last year’s federal tax overhaul, aims to give investors tax breaks on federal capital gains taxes in exchange for investments in funds that support small businesses and housing projects in low-income areas.

U.S. investors reportedly hold trillions of dollars in unrealized capital gains in stocks and mutual funds that could be tapped to support this program. The incentive offers deferral, reduction and potential elimination of certain capital gains taxes.

“We are hopeful this new incentive will bring much-needed investment to many distressed areas across the commonwealth,” Wolf said in a statement.


Here are the 20 midstate census tracts, by county, that were nominated by the Wolf administration:

  • Cumberland: Tract 120 in Carlisle
  • Dauphin: Tracts 201, 203, 206, 211, 213, 214 in Harrisburg
  • Lancaster: Tracts 8, 9, 10 and 14 in Lancaster; tracts 112 and 113 in Columbia
  • Lebanon: Tracts 1 and 2 in Lebanon
  • York: Tracts 4, 5, 7, 9 and 10 in York

Jason Scott
Jason Scott covers state government, real estate and construction, media and marketing, and Dauphin and Cumberland counties. Have a tip or question for him? Email him at

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