ALLENTOWN, Pa. -

The Lehigh Valley Economic Development Committee says the Neighborhood Improvement Zone will help the Lehigh Valley's long term economic development.

"It is a project that will transform Allentown and in the long term enable the entire Lehigh Valley region to rise to new levels of economic success," the LVEDC said. 

The LVEDC says the NIZ gives it a chance to market to new companies outside the Lehigh Valley, offering them a new place to settle within the Valley.

"The NIZ brings an exciting addition to the menu of sites and programs we have to market and is another arrow in our quiver to compliment programs such as Keystone Opportunity Zones, Keystone Innovation Zones, Foreign Trade Zones and Governor’s Action Team incentives."

It says the city and local municipalities need to work together to ensure the success of the NIZ.

The LVEDC is a regional marketing organization that works to promote business and economic growth in the greater Lehigh Valley region and within the cities.

The Neighborhood Improvement Zone, a section of downtown Allentown near the hockey arena, takes the earned income tax of employees who work in the area and routes it back to improving the area.  Currently, the earned income tax is returned to the municipality where the employee lives.  Many municipalities are upset by the NIZ, some plan to file a lawsuit claiming it is unconstitutional.