RICHMOND - Gov. Terry McAuliffe has announced Virginia’s acceptance in the Business Incentives Initiative, a joint project of The Pew Charitable Trusts and the Center for Regional Economic Competitiveness.
This 18-month program engages forward-thinking leaders at the state level to reform economic development incentive reporting policies and practices.
Teams of economic development policymakers and practitioners from seven states will improve those states’ ability to collect and report results from incentive investments and, as a result, develop national standards and best practices that can become road maps for other states.
Over the course of this initiative, Virginia will work with Pew, CREC, and the six additional states, Indiana, Louisiana, Maryland, Michigan, Oklahoma and Tennessee, to ensure that economic development investments yield a strong return. Virginia identified key stakeholder entities to form the core of the project team. Under the direction of the Virginia Secretary of Commerce and Trade and led by the Virginia Economic Development Partnership, the team will provide Pew and CREC with all necessary information on policies and practices, and access to key staff.
Representatives of the following organizations will participate in the initiative:
- Office of the Governor
- Joint Legislative Audit and Review Commission
- House Appropriations Committee
- Senate Finance Committee
- Department of Planning and Budget
- Virginia Tobacco Indemnification & Community Revitalization Commission
- Virginia Center for Innovative Technology
- Virginia Tourism Corporation
- Department of Housing and Community Development
- Virginia Department of Taxation
Virginia is committed to participating in this initiative in order to develop national best practices on incentive data collection and reporting, and implement best practices to improve the state’s incentive data collection and reporting practices.
Speaking about today’s announcement, McAuliffe said, “Seeking participation in the Business Incentives Initiative demonstrates Virginia’s commitment to business incentive evaluation and ensuring that we continue to administer best practices. The technical assistance from Pew and CREC to collect more accurate data on the performance of incentive programs could greatly improve the ability of decision-makers to craft polices that deliver the strongest results at the lowest possible costs. In an era of increased public scrutiny, this is an appropriate time to recalibrate our economic development programming. Participation in this study will be valuable as part of our work to keep the Commonwealth of Virginia as the ‘Best State for Business.’”
“This initiative is a valuable opportunity for Virginia’s current business incentive evaluation processes to be researched and analyzed so that we may evaluate any proposed legislative or regulatory reforms and perfect our practices,” said Maurice Jones, Virginia Secretary of Commerce and Trade. “We look forward to the partnership with Pew, CREC, and our Virginia team to ultimately strengthen our baseline foundation for incentives management and continue to attract jobs and investment to the Commonwealth.”
“Incentives are Virginia's investment in its economic future and a business decision for both the Commonwealth and the company,” said VEDP President and CEO Martin Briley. “A collaborative analysis will provide us, and others, the tools needed to evaluate overall program effectiveness and outcomes, and to refine policy as needed towards our economic development objectives. VEDP is grateful to lead Virginia’s team as part of this important initiative, and is confident that an improved process will only bolster the Commonwealth’s top-rated business environment.”
The Pew Charitable Trusts is driven by the power of knowledge to solve today’s most challenging problems. Learn more at www.pewtrusts.org
The Center for Regional Economic Competitiveness is an independent, not-for-profit organization founded to provide policy makers from around the world with the information and technical assistance they need to formulate and execute upon innovative, regional, job-creating economic strategies.
The Virginia Economic Development Partnership, a marketing organization, was created by the Virginia General Assembly in 1995 to encourage, stimulate, and support the development and expansion of the economy of the Commonwealth. The Partnership is a state authority, which is governed by a 24-member Board of Directors appointed by the Governor and the Virginia General Assembly. To accomplish its objectives of promoting economic expansion within the Commonwealth, the Partnership focuses its efforts on business recruitment, expansion and international trade. VEDP has offices in Virginia, China, Germany, Japan, India and the United Kingdom.