White House advisers Ivanka Trump and her husband Jared Kushner will not profit from a new opportunity zone program, which encourages private sector investment in low-income communities, according to Department of Housing and Urban Development Secretary Ben Carson.
“The opportunity zones were chosen by the governors of the 50 states, the District of Columbia and our five territories. They have nothing to do with Ivanka Trump or Jared, or anybody else,” said Carson to FOX Business’ Stuart Varney on Wednesday. “But there are going to be people all over the country who do have properties located within the opportunity zones.”
His comments follow an Associated Press (AP) story alleging that Kushner stands to potentially benefit from the program. According to the AP investigation , Kushner owns a stake in a holding company that is part owner of real estate investment firm Cadre, which recently announced it is launching a series of opportunity zone funds under the new program.
Both Ivanka and Kushner have promoted that program.
Peter Mirijanian, the spokesperson for Ivanka’s lawyer Abbe Lowell, said in a statement that Ivanka “adheres to the ethics advice she has received from Counsel about what issues she can work on and those to which she is recused.”
“The Opportunity Zones legislation is broad-sweeping policy that impacts millions of people. Since joining the government, Ms. Trump has divested assets, set up trusts, removed herself from businesses and decisions about her investments,” Mirijanian said.
President Trump was expected to sign an executive order on Wednesday at the White House on the program.
Carson said it’s a “win-win” for private sector investors and low-income communities.
“[Investors] get a tax break and we get the investment we need in the areas that have been economically neglected,” he said.