The Online Newsletter for the Virginia Economic Developers Association
May 2020
President's Column
Dear VEDA Members,

In last month's column I noted how the pandemic has resulted in a "creative response" from many professions, and economic developers are no exception. In fact I would argue that people in the economic development profession have to be creative because our work is so fluid. We were creative long before the health crisis and we will continue to be long after.
This same creativity must also be applied to our professional organization. The immediate COVID-19 impact on our core VEDA deliverables, large conferences, networking events, and training, has been catastrophic. Many of these key deliverables are also our primary revenue generators, posing yet another threat to our organization. The long-term implications from this environmental disruption are far from clear for our organization. If we are going to reinvent VEDA and remain viable and valuable, we need to develop internal processes for fostering a successful transformation.
At the last Board of Directors meeting we were presented with a proposal to establish a Past Presidents Council. This initiative spearheaded by a group of past presidents would become a VEDA "Think Tank", focused on supporting VEDA leadership and addressing organizational challenges like COVID-19. Unlike the Cardinal Council whose outreach efforts are directed at consulting with practitioners on their community's economic development program, the Past Presidents Council would be focused on organizational issues facing the Association. With an understanding of past challenges and the need for sustaining ongoing efforts in transitioning year-to-year, the Past Presidents Council will be able to assist incoming officers as they lead the organization. Additionally, to ensure continuity, the Past Presidents Council can play a key role in helping to set the agenda for the annual planning retreat. The VEDA Board will formally vote on this proposal at their June Board of Directors meeting.
We need more creative ideas like the Past Presidents Council to keep VEDA relevant and ultimately successful in the post COVID-19 world. Now is a great time to speak up!

Jim Noel
VEDA President
York County Economic Development
VEDA now accepting 2020 Cardinal Award nominations
The Cardinal Award is the most prestigious award bestowed by VEDA to deserving members. The award recognizes leadership in the field of economic development, outstanding professional accomplishments, and exceptional service to the organization. 

Nominations are now being accepted until Friday, July 3rd. Individuals nominating and endorsing the nomination are required to be members of VEDA.

Corporate Patron Spotlight
VEDA is fortunate to have the generous support of Annual Corporate Patrons who assist us in bringing great programming, scholarships, professional development opportunities and much more to VEDA members. If you have an opportunity, please thank them for their support of economic development in Virginia.

The Port of Virginia

The Port of Virginia is the third largest container port on the U.S. East Coast.  It operates five marine terminals, including the barge served Richmond Marine Terminal, and also operates the Virginia Inland Port, an intermodal container transfer facility located in Front Royal, VA.  With its deep channels, state-of-the-art terminal infrastructure, strategic location and world-wide reach, the Port of Virginia is an engine for economic development and prosperity across the Commonwealth.  In 2016, The Port of Virginia began infrastructure projects totaling nearly $700 million that will increase the port's annual capacity by 1,000,000 containers by 2020, ensuring economic opportunity for your clients, localities and region for decades to come. Please feel free to contact us to discuss how The Port of Virginia can support your efforts in business retention, expansion and attraction.

Contact: Russell J. Held, Vice President Economic Development

Timmons Group

Timmons Group understands Economic Development is about creating jobs and investment.  Our team has been a major player in some of the Commonwealth's largest project announcements helping local, regional, and state agencies succeed for over 25 years. Our design and business professionals are experts in transforming sites, corridors and buildings into highly marketable, revenue-producing assets and specialize in site analysis, certification and acquisition, as well as master planning, design, funding and development of parks ranging in size from 50 acres to 3,500 acres.

Timmons Group has helped numerous clients become "Prospect Ready", focusing on the issues that really matter.  From developing  a strong web presence with Site LoGIStics, to solving your infrastructure and site needs, to helping you close the deal, let our team of seasoned professionals help you prepare for, and land that next prospect.

Contact: Joseph C. Hines, PE, MBA
Cardinal around the Commonwealth
It has been said that cardinals withstand all seasonal changes. They are BOLD. STRONG. PERSISTENT. We think that's true for economic developers across Virginia too. If you have a VEDA Cardinal, take it with you as you travel across your region and beyond, snap a picture and share on social media with #GoVEDA! If you don't have a VEDA Cardinal and would like one, send your mailing address to

Check out where the VEDA Cardinal has been showing up across the Commonwealth.
CARDINAL AROUND THE COMMONWEALTH UPDATE: Now that most of us are sheltering in place and working from home, share your telecommuting experiences with the VEDA Cardinal. Stay safe in place!
VEDA COVID-19 resources and programming to assist our members
VEDA Resources & Information Page
VEDA is offering resources and sharing tools to support your efforts during this time. Resources you can use and share with your communities in real time. You can share too!  CLICK HERE for the VEDA COVID-19 News and Resource Page. Click on the Forum link on this page (be sure to login as a member) and post your news, information, resources, and best practices.

VEDA/VEDP impactED Sessions
VEDA, in conjunction with VEDP is hosting regular impactED Sessions every other Monday. The next impactED Session will be Monday, June 8, 2020 from 12:30-2:00 pm. Be on the lookout for meeting notices and details. To access previous impactED information and recordings, CLICK HERE.

COVID-19 Relief and Recovery Spreadsheet
After Monday, June 1, 2020, VEDA will be posting a spreadsheet representing a compilation of information about various resources for COVID-19 relief and recovery. Federal, State, Regional, and Local resources are included. This spreadsheet will be updated weekly. If you have program information to add to the spreadsheet, forward to
IEDC Excellence in Economic Development Awards open for nominations
Register for an IEDC Excellence in Economic Development Award in 2020 to gain recognition from stakeholders, peers, and the media for your ec onomic development achievements and leadership over the past year. This year's award program introduces the new category "Economic Development Organization of the Year" Award.

The "EDO of the Year" award recognizes a non-profit, public agency/authority, or economic development unit within a local government with a primary mission of economic development that has demonstrated long term strategic planning, organizational development, and significant community impact and/or innovation.
Final submission deadline is June 26, 2020. Awards will be presented at the IEDC 2020 Annual Conference, October 11-14, 2020.
Excellence Award Categories

Promotional Awards
These awards recognize innovative and effective marketing materials used for attracting, retaining, and fostering business as well as communications vehicles used by economic development organizations.


Included: Print Brochure; General Purpose Print Promotion; Multimedia/Video Promotion; Annual Report; Paid Advertising Campaign; Magazine and Newsletter; Special Event; Innovation in Economic Development Week


Internet and Digital Media Awards
These awards recognize outstanding and innovative use of the Internet and new media including podcasts, blogs, wikis, extranet and intranets for economic development. Since these categories are judged remotely, please include all material to be reviewed in electronic format and provide relevant URLs.


Included: General Purpose Website; Special Purpose Website; Digital Media

Program Awards
The Program Awards recognize successful programs in economic and business development that retain and/or generate jobs and investment on an ongoing basis.


Included: Multi-Year Economic Development Program; Business Retention and Expansion (BRE) Initiatives; Entrepreneurship; Neighborhood and Retail Development; Talent Development and Retention; Real Estate Redevelopment & Reuse; Economic Equity & Inclusion; Resiliency, Recovery and Mitigation; Creative Financing; Innovation Programs and Initiatives

Partnership Awards
These awards recognize significant partnerships formed in support of economic development and growth.  

Included: Public-Private Partnerships;  Partnerships with Educational Institutions;  Regionalism and Cross-Border Collaboration

EDO of the Year Award
This award recognizes a non-profit, public agency/authority, or economic development unit within a local government with a primary mission of economic development that has demonstrated long term strategic planning, organizational development, and significant community impact and/or innovation. The organization does not have to be a certified AEDO to apply. 
In This Issue


VEDA Summer Membership Meeting being planned -VIRTUALLY
The VEDA Membership Meetings Committee is working on bringing an online Summer Membership Meeting to you on June 24, 2020. Tentative time frame is Noon to 3:00 pm. Mark your calendars and plan to attend this online meeting. Content and registration will be distributed soon.
2020 VEDA VIRTUAL Summer Membership Meeting
Wednesday, June 24, 2020 
11:45 am - 3:00 pm

Content and other details coming soon for this online VEDA Membership Meeting

2020 VEDA Fall Conference
Wednesday, September 16-Friday, September 18, 2020
Norfolk Hilton The Main
Norfolk, Virginia

VEDA Winter Membership Meeting
Tuesday, December 1-Wednesday, December 2, 2020
Stonewall Jackson Hotel & Conference Center
Staunton, Virginia

Mark your calendar and plan on attending these economic development events in 2020!

James Noel
York County Office 
of Economic Development

Vice President
Amanda Glover
Sapience, LLC

Steven Harrison
Hampton Roads Economic Development Alliance

David Manley
Joint IDA of Wythe County

Immediate Past President
Stephanie Landrum
Alexandria Economic Development Partnership


Traci Blido
Bedford County Economic Development

Paul Bryan
Froehling & Robertson

Voncile Gilbreath
Greater Williamsburg Partnership

Linda Green
Southern Virginia
Regional Alliance

John Kilgore
Scott County Economic Development

Courtland Robinson
Virginia Economic
Development Partnership

Curry Roberts
Fredericksburg Regional Alliance

Rick Whittington
Whittington Consulting

Russell Held
The Port of Virginia

Barry DuVal
Virginia Chamber of Commerce

Patrick Gottschalk
Williams Mullen

Erik Johnston
Virginia Department of Housing and Community Development

Jody Keenan
Virginia SBDC Network-George Mason University

Connie Long
Virginia Economic Developers Association

Stephen Moret
Virginia Economic Development Partnership

Sharon Morrisey
Virginia Community College System
Work Opportunity Tax Credit
The Department of the Treasury and the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) recently issued Notice 2020-23.  Under the notice, a time sensitive act due to be performed on or after April 1, 2020, and before July 15, 2020.  This includes the requirement, for an employer seeking to qualify to claim the Work Opportunity Tax Credit, to send IRS Form 8850 to a State Workforce Agency no later than 28 days after an individual begins working for the employer. Specifically, this applies to WOTC certification requests containing an employment start date on or after March 4, 2020 and on or before July 14, 2020.  As a result, under the notice, employers that otherwise would be required to submit IRS Form 8850 to a State Workforce Agency on or after April 1, 2020, and before July 15, 2020, have until July 15, 2020 to submit IRS Form 8850.
WOTC can save employers up to $2,400 per eligible employee in federal income tax.   This is a rare retroactive opportunity.
Please feel free to reach out to VEDA member Rodney Haynes at Vrain with  questions or for additional information.