RD440 - Virginia Economic Development Partnership Annual Report Fiscal Year 2016

Executive Summary:
This annual report of the Virginia Economic Development Partnership Authority (VEDP) is submitted pursuant to the requirements of § 2.2-2242, § 2.2-2238 B, and § 2.2-2239 of the Code of Virginia and Chapter 780, Item 125 D.1 of the 2016 Virginia Acts of Assembly. The Code requires VEDP to report on the status of the Commonwealth’s comprehensive economic development strategy, and to prepare and report on the plan to market to high unemployment areas of the state. Chapter 780, Items 125 D.1 and D.2 of the 2016 Virginia Acts of Assembly further require that the report include the number of business prospect site visits per region of the Commonwealth and direct VEDP to identify target industries for southwest and southside Virginia. This report responds to all of those requirements. In addition, the Authority’s financial statements audited by the Auditor of Public Accounts for the fiscal year ended June 30, 2016 (FY 2016) are attached to this report.

This Annual Report documents the efforts of VEDP in fulfilling its mission during FY 2016. The body of the report is organized by the major components of the Partnership’s mission statement, beginning with an overview of VEDP’s business development strategies. For each element of the mission statement, a summary of VEDP activities and division responsibilities is included, as well as a listing of FY 2016 accomplishments.

VEDP’s report and plan to market to high unemployment regions of the state are included in Appendix 1, which meets the requirement articulated in § 2.2-2238 B of the Code of Virginia.

The next two appendices address Chapter 780, Item 125 D.1 of the 2016 Virginia Acts of Assembly. The data on business prospect site visits per planning district is contained in the tables and map of Appendix 2. Appendix 3 shows the number of sites and buildings recommended to prospects and provides the number of companies assisted with site and building recommendations.

VEDP monitors economic development activity in Virginia through its economic development announcements database. The database tracks direct investments and new jobs created in Virginia as a result of the announced plans of new and expanding companies. This information has been maintained, with modifications, since 1960. The data used throughout this report and summarized in Appendix 4 cover announcements made between July 1, 2015, and June 30, 2016. VEDP recorded the announcement of new and expanding facilities during the year. Appendix 5 sets out the number of announcements by Planning District Commission (PDC), both in terms of new facilities and expansions. This appendix also sets out the number of new jobs and amount of new investment by PDC. It is anticipated that from those announcements, a total of 18,511 new jobs will be created, with a total of $2.7 billion in new capital investment. Forty-seven percent of the announcements were of employers locating in economically distressed areas. These announcements are expected to create 8,466 new jobs and make capital investments exceeding $1.255 billion.

The announcements and performance measures documented in this report represent VEDP-assisted successful economic development decisions for Virginia. For FY 2016, the 191 VEDP-assisted decisions resulted in 18,511 new jobs and $2.7 billion in new capital investment. Further, these 191 VEDP-assisted decisions will generate an estimated $2.71 billion in new local and state tax revenue to the Commonwealth over the next 10 years.

This report is based on announcements of planned manufacturing and non-manufacturing capital expenditures and associated employment; many of the new facilities announced are not yet in operation. While the information indicates the kind of new economic activity occurring in the state, it does not measure total employment growth. Information for this report is obtained from the Virginia Economic Development Partnership’s public and private sector contacts at state, regional and local levels, as well as from published sources and Partnership staff.

As noted above, VEDP is required by statute to report on the status of the Governor’s comprehensive economic development plan. Upon taking office, each governor must develop a comprehensive economic development strategy. On August 27, 2014, Governor McAuliffe signed Executive Order Number Twenty-Six, establishing The New Virginia Economy Strategic Plan and Steering Committee. The Steering Committee published The New Virginia Economy Strategic Plan in late 2014, which will serve as the Commonwealth’s four-year economic development strategic plan. The Plan identifies five key focus areas for economic growth and prosperity: “Project Ready” Infrastructure; Diversified High-Growth Industries; Preeminent Business Climate; Innovation and Entrepreneurs; and “Credentials to Careers” Workforce. VEDP has worked closely with the Governor and his Administration to advance the priorities of this strategic plan, specifically in the areas of infrastructure and site development and targeting high-growth industries. The Steering Committee is required to report annually on the Commonwealth’s progress towards achieving the goals outlined in the strategic plan.