Almost two months since he was fatally gunned down in front of his Marathon Clothing store in Los Angeles, late rapper Nipsey Hussle’s past plans to fight the gentrification in South L.A. have made there way to Congress courtesy of a new investment fund launched by his business partners.
During a recent meeting with the Congressional Black Caucus, L.A. native Nipsey Hussle’s quest to stop gentrification in South L.A. was a hot topic of conversation—a conversation that could possibly yield the results that the late rapper was so committed to putting in place before his untimely death.
Hussle had hopes to rebuild black neighborhoods in South L.A. through a provision in the federal tax code called opportunity zones. Through this, he aimed to reverse decades of neglect and disinvestment in black communities. He reportedly had meetings scheduled in Washington, D.C. to discuss his vision with lawmakers.
Although Hussle has passed, his business partners are determined to keep his vision for his community and his memory alive through a new investment fund called “Our Opportunity.” It will operate by bringing together hometown heroes — mostly wealthy black entertainers, celebrities and athletes — to invest into neighborhoods in their cities using the opportunity zone tax incentive, leading the charge for economic development.
Councilman Harris-Dawson explained the importance of the project, stating:
“These folks have things that all of Wall Streets’ money put together can’t buy and that is what’s called street credibility. That is what’s called skin in the game and that is what’s called confidence [in] their community. That when they make an investment or get involved in a business venture it will … serve the community that they are in and leave the communities in a better place.”
T.I. spoke about how Hussle’s commitment was the start of a larger movement:
“Nipsey was the founder of the idea to bring everyone together who may individually be able to do great things and make significant impact on their own in their communities. But for us to come together, we can impact so many more communities and spread our efforts so much wider.”
Treasury Secretary Steven T. Mnuchin predicts that opportunity zones could bring in an estimated $100 billion of investments. At press time, the federal government has designated 8,700 opportunity zones across the country, including parts of Hussle’s Hyde Park neighborhood in South L.A.