RD274 - Annual Report on the Rural Economic Development Strategic Plan

Executive Summary:

Pursuant to the Code of Virginia, § 2.2-223 8.1, this is the second report prepared in an effort to develop and implement a rural economic development strategic plan for Virginia. As mandated by the legislation, this plan is to address:

I. Education, including pre-K, primary, secondary, and post graduate resources/workforce development programs, as they may pertain to the Workforce Investment Act;

II. Infrastructure, including capital for water and sewer upgrading, waste management, law enforcement, housing, primary and secondary roads, and telecommunications;

III. Traditional industrial development and industry retention programs, including assistance in financing and workforce training;

IV. Recreational and cultural enhancement and related quality of life measures, including parks, civic centers, and theaters;

V. Agribusiness incentives to promote the use of new technologies, and the exploration of new market opportunities; and

VI. Revolving loan funds or loan guarantee programs to help start or expand entrepreneurial activities, especially small business activities in rural communities.

The Act requires the entities listed below to jointly develop and implement the plan:

• Virginia Economic Development Partnership
• Center for Rural Virginia
• Virginia Department of Housing and Community Development
• Virginia Resources Authority
• Virginia Department of Business Assistance
• Virginia Tobacco Indemnification and Community Revitalization Commission
• Virginia Employment Commission
• Virginia Tourism Corporation
• Virginia Community College System
• Institutions of higher education located in rural regions (University of Virginia, Radford University, UVA-Wise, Virginia Tech, James Madison University, Longwood University, Virginia State University)
• Virginia Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services