RD488 - Effectiveness of Economic Development Incentive Grant Programs Administered by the Commonwealth of Virginia – November 15, 2017

Executive Summary:

In accordance with § 2.2-206.2 of the Code of Virginia of 1950, as amended,(*1) the Virginia Economic Development Partnership (VEDP) serves as the aggregator of data on eighteen different incentive programs across nine separate entities.(*2) This is the fourth annual report detailing summary information on economic development incentive programs administered by the Commonwealth of Virginia. The goal of this report is to provide data on incentive programs and relevant measures of program effectiveness in a transparent and easy-to-understand format.

In total, from FY2013 through FY2017, these eighteen incentive programs awarded $413,465,598 in incentive funds across 2,017 projects and $10,836,553 in investment funds across 164 projects. Virginia Code requires the report to include the previous three years, but to better demonstrate the progress of each program the previous five years have been included. Communicating these results and understanding the goals of each program is critical to evaluating projects for success and programs for effectiveness.

This FY2017 report follows the basic format established in the FY2016 report with the exception of moving the location of the completed project summary from the Appendix to the page following the summary for ease of reading as suggested by JLARC. Ideas for improvements are detailed in the Next Steps and Recommendations and Actions and Goals sections. In addition to this report, the reporting agencies launched an interactive website ( http://www.virginiaincentives.org) to help people access the data on Virginia’s incentives.

This report shows the sustainability of the existing reporting process but more work remains for the Commonwealth to become the national leader in incentive management, assessment, and evaluation. Since the report captures data on eighteen unique incentive programs across nine entities, the creation of a Central Data Repository (CDR) is critical to accurately and effectively link and track individual projects which receive multiple incentives from multiple entities over multiple periods of time. Without a CDR, there is not an efficient and repeatable method for achieving this.


(*1) For the purposes of this report, Virginia Code § 2.2-206.2 is used interchangeably with HB1191 or Virginia Code.
(*2) For the purposes of this report, an entity may be an agency, authority, or other unit that is authorized to use state funds in conjunction with an economic development incentive program.