Issue 9, Spring 2023
Lou Ann Wallace
VAPDC President
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Northern Neck Planning District Commission and Middle Peninsula Planning District Commission
The Northern Neck Planning District Commission (NNPDC) serves the Counties of Lancaster, Northumberland, Richmond and Westmoreland. The Northern Neck is the northernmost of Virginia’s three peninsulas, bounded by the Potomac River to the north, the Rappahannock River to the south and the Chesapeake Bay to the east. Established in 1969, the NNPDC (Planning District 17) is governed by a 16-member Commission whose representatives are appointed by the four local governing bodies.
The NNPDC was designated an Economic Development District by the U.S. Department of Commerce-Economic Development Administration (EDA) in February 1999. This designation represents a federal/local partnership between the NNPDC and the U.S. Department of Commerce-EDA and assists with establishing regional priorities for projects and investments.
Over the past several years, NNPDC has worked with electric utilities and All Points Broadband to provide universal coverage, fiber-to-the-home broadband service using federal, state and local funding. Agriculture, aquaculture, forestry, manufacturing and tourism also all contribute to the economy of the Northern Neck, which has been designated by the U. S. Congress as the Northern Neck National Heritage Area.
The Northern Neck maintains its NNPDC website, the Northern Neck Tourism Commission website, and the Northern Neck Commuter Assistance Program (CAP) website. The NNPDC also hosts a regional environmental information portal.
The Northern Neck region is home to 50,460 people (Weldon Cooper Center estimate, July 1, 2022). The NNPDC Chairman is James M. Long (Northumberland County) and the Executive Director is Jerry W. Davis, AICP.
The Middle Peninsula Planning District Commission (MPPDC) is composed of nine local governments, which includes the Counties of Essex, Gloucester, King and Queen, King William, Mathews and Middlesex, and the Towns of Tappahannock, Urbanna and West Point. Regional leadership to address pressing coastal issues was present in the Middle Peninsula beginning in the early 1960’s and continues today following formal establishment of the MPPD in 1972.

MPPDC’s (Planning District 18) main functions focus on issues related to water. This includes waterfronts, public access, coastal resiliency, and flood risk and living shoreline mitigation. It also maintains a Comprehensive Economic Development Strategy for the region. Most recently, MPPDC has launched the first structured resiliency program in the nation. The Fight the Flood (FTF) program has infused over $25 million in direct financial assistance to both public and private land owner and water management businesses desiring to protect land and manage water, which threatens the tax base of local governments. The FTF program has attracted over 30 new water management companies (from Florida to Canada) into the Middle Peninsula. The program, capitalized with more than $2.5 million in loan funds, also provides direct financing for both private and public entities in need.  
The MPPDC area has a population of 93,372 (Weldon Cooper Center estimate, July 1, 2022). The Chair of the MPPDC is Ashely Chriscoe (Gloucester County) and the Executive Director is Lewie Lawrence.
in the news
VAPDC had a successful luncheon briefing with representatives of Virginia’s Congressional offices in mid-March. This was done in conjunction with the 2023 National Association of Development Organization’s Washington Conference. Staff from Senator Kaine’s office and five of our Congressional offices attended. We engaged in good discussion about regional projects, federal funding opportunities and other topics. Thanks again to the good cohort of VAPDC Board members, PDC Commissioners, Executive Directors and staff who participated. 

The Virginia Office of Broadband is hosting a series of listening sessions to receive input on development of the Five-Year Plan and Initial Proposal, which are two critical components of the Broadband Equity, Access, and Deployment Program (BEAD) under the Infrastructure Investments and Jobs Act. During these input sessions, the Office of Broadband will provide an update of broadband progress in Virginia and discuss the opportunities, as well as high-level plans under BEAD. The session for local governments is scheduled for the afternoon of May 18. Registration is available here.

VAPDC is grateful for the relationships it has with other organizations and state agencies. We also are thankful for the financial support we receive from these valuable partners. The Board of Directors annually approves a sponsorship opportunities form for the upcoming fiscal year. The FY23/24 form is available here for your consideration of supporting VAPDC financially in the coming year. Thank you!
upcoming events/calendar
May 18, 2023 
June 2, 2023 
June 14, 2023 
July 26-28, 2023
BEAD listening session
Executive Directors Committee meeting
Board of Directors meeting
Would you like to see your PDC newsletter or job listings on the VAPDC website?
Virginia Association of Planning District Commissions | Website
869 Lynnhaven Parkway, Suite 113 #244
Virginia Beach, Virginia 23452