Partners at all levels are needed and play a major role in catalyzing Opportunity Zones in Arkansas:
A majority of projects will require a mixed financial blend, including debt financing. Lenders, financial institutions, development finance agencies (DFAs) and community development financial institutions (CDFIs) have a great opportunity to support their local communities and strengthen revenue.
Local community organizations, community development corporations (CDCs) and chambers of commerce can be key in advocating for the local community, organizing residents and leaders, and ensuring strategies are equitable and aligned with community assets and needs.
Foundations and Philanthropic Organizations
Foundations and philanthropic organizations can leverage connections, fund grants and engage in impact investing to attract external investors and validate local commitment.
Entrepreneur Supporting Organizations
Since Opportunity Zones also seek to support the development and expansion of businesses, entrepreneur supporting organizations are vital to provide the technical assistance, connections and resources that those interested in starting or expanding businesses will require.
Academic institutions are influential leaders in local communities and are key to develop the workforce and innovation that is required for community success.
State and Local Governments
State and Local Governments must be engaged at every level in the process of Opportunity Zones, from developing community strategies to enacting policies that facilitate investment to identifying potential projects and stakeholders.