LISC Indianapolis hosts a series called “Development on Tap.” Featuring a short presentation from topic experts and LISC designed to frame the discussion, the bulk of the program consists of mediated discussion, with opportunities for questions, answers, and comments. All events take place from 4 – 6 pm at the Platform. All events offer beer provided by Sun King Brewery and light refreshments. On March 26, 2020 LISC Indianapolis hosted a virtual Development on Tap entitled Opportunity Zones and the Challenges of Implementation.
The event featured a discussion with Economic Innovation Group, the DC-based public policy group that incubated the idea behind Opportunity Zones. EIG will speak to the latest developments and tools for Opportunity Zones, as well as address how small businesses and distressed communities can play a role in COVID-19 health and economic crises recovery. Following EIG, we heard from:
Vincent Ash, Senior Project Manager for Develop Indy, who discussed Opportunity Zones in Indy through Develop Indy's Investment Prospectus, sharing zone geography and demographics, recent projects and trends, opportunities for investment and more. He also discussed how small businesses can benefit from the Indy Chamber’s newly-created Rapid Response Hub.
Jon Berg, IndyEast Promise Zone Director, discussed the Promise Zone investment prospectus, as well as other federal agencies that are giving preference points or priority consideration to grant applicants in Opportunity Zones. Jon also shared small business strategies being deployed in the Promise Zone as a response to COVID-19.
Emily Scott, Indianapolis LISC Economic Development Program Officer, discussed efforts underway to provide additional capital to businesses in Indianapolis neighborhoods, including an overview of LISC’s KIVA product and other lending options now available.