Looking to Start or Invest in a Business in an Opportunity Zone? Well, What are Opportunity Zones, Anyway?

By Mark Gilboard | January 29, 2021

Opportunity Zones are a new way to finance projects in underserved areas of our state’s cities, towns, and tribal areas.

The Tax Cuts and Jobs Act of 2017 provides for the governor of each state to nominate certain census tracts as “Opportunity Zones”. Designation as an Opportunity Zone allows for the creation of a new class of investment vehicles with tax advantages authorized to aggregate and deploy private investment located in Opportunity Zones. The purpose of these tax advantages is to attract capital investment into economically distressed areas.

The U.S. Department of the Treasury designated 63 Opportunity Zones in New Mexico. New Mexico’s Opportunity Zones are located in rural, tribal and urban communities in 22 counties. Qualified Opportunity Zones retain this designation for 10 years.

Here’s how you can connect to New Mexico’s Opportunity Zones and Resources:

NM Economic Development Department has created an online hub to assist with education, technical assistance, and making connections for businesses, investors, communities and partners.

At the NM EDD Opportunity Zone Hub, you can:

  • Find OZs in NM using our interactive map
  • Access numerous resources
  • Submit an OZ project
  • Sign up for the NM OZ email list

And as always, feel free to reach out to WESST Consultants in any of our Six Women’s Business Centers that have Opportunities Zones in their areas:

  • Farmington: 505-566-3715
  • Santa Fe (for Northern Pueblos, Rio Arriba and Taos Counties): 505-474-6556
  • Rio Rancho (for Sandoval County): 505-892-1238
  • Albuquerque (incl. Valencia, Cibola and Torrance Counties): 505-246-6900
  • Roswell: 575-624-9850
  • Las Cruces: 575-541-1583














(This post was taken in part from the State of New Mexico Economic Development Dept. website, https://gonm.biz/)

About the Author


Mark Gilboard

Mark Gilboard joins WESST in 2017 after 16+ years as a marketing and advertising research professional with Nielsen Media Research and Clear Channel Outdoor. He focuses on helping people achieve their entrepreneurial dreams with careful and insightful guidance and enthusiasm. Prior to embarking on his corporate career, Mark taught college courses in Media, and Communications, at both CNM and UNM. He has a Master’s Degree in Communication from UNM and Bachelor’s Degrees in both Rhetoric and Spanish from Bates College, in Lewiston, Maine. Mark believes Albuquerque is a great place to build successful businesses, and an especially great place to start and raise families. He lives in the Ridgecrest area of town with his wife Kristen and two daughters – Anneliese and Nola, plus a bevy of beasts – canine, feline and reptilian.

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