In an effort to promote the advancement of technology-based businesses, the City of Charlottesville created the first citywide Technology Zone in the Commonwealth of Virginia. The ordinance creates a tax incentive for qualified technology businesses operating anywhere within the boundaries of the City of Charlottesville, thus making the entire city a "technology zone.” The ordinance reduces business license taxes for qualified businesses. For details and an application see the Commissioner of Revenue.
“The Technology Zone has benefited Growing Technologies as it enabled us to reduce our costs during our start-up phase. I truly believe as a business owner, the City of Charlottesville is looking at ways to help my business grow and recent changes to the Technology Zone, including extending the eligibility period to five years, is one example of how they continue to show this ongoing support.”
“As a technology business founded, and always headquartered, in downtown Charlottesville, the Technology Business Tax Credit has been instrumental to Blue Ridge Internetworks. Since we are self-financed, every dollar from the tax credit was reinvested in our operations allowing us to grow every single year.”
Virginia's Center for Innovative Technology
Virginia's Center for Innovative Technology (CIT) is a state-chartered nonprofit corporation focused on accelerating Virginia's next generation of technology and technology companies. CIT offers a number of business assistance programs and services to technology related entrepreneurs throughout the state. For more information regarding CIT and its services, please visit their website, or call 1-800-3-TECHVA to be automatically connected to the regional office that serves your area.
Economic Development Authority (EDA)
Economic Development Authorities assist new and expanding businesses in securing tax-exempt industrial development revenue bonds. These bonds provide as much as 100% financing at interest rates that are much lower than those available from other sources.
Recently, federal regulations have restricted the use of these bonds to financing of manufacturing facilities. Bonds are issued when financing these facilities, covering the cost of land, buildings, machinery or equipment. A mortgage or lien on the financed property is then secured and repaid from the revenue of the project.
Several parts of Charlottesville qualify for the SBA HUBZone Empowerment Contracting Program. The program stimulates economic development and creates jobs in urban and rural communities by providing Federal contracting preferences to small businesses. These preferences go to small businesses that obtain HUBZone (Historically Underutilized Business Zone) certification in part by employing staff who live in a HUBZone. The company must also maintain a "principal office" in one of these specially designated areas. To learn more about HUB Zones visit the SBA website.
The Workforce Services Division of the Virginia Department of Business Assistance offers customized recruiting and training to companies that are creating new jobs. In addition, Workforce Services offers assistance to companies that need to retrain existing employees. More information.
Virginia Small Business Financing Authority
The Virginia Small Business Financing Authority (VSBFA), which is housed within the Virginia Department of Business Assistance, offers programs to provide businesses and communities with access to capital needed for economic growth and expansion. Call (804) 371-8254 or visit VDBA for more information.
The State of Virginia, through the Virginia Economic Development Partnership, offers a number of other incentives on a project by project basis. To learn more about these incentives click here.
The New Market Tax Credit Program
The federal New Market Tax Credit (NMTC) program is currently the largest federal economic development incentive program. It is designed to channel $15 billion dollars in new, private investment capital into businesses in economically distressed census tracts across the country. (See the NMTC Map below.) NMTC creates a network of specialized financial institutions across the country specifically designed to make loans to, and investments in, businesses located in eligible census tracts. Generally, these business loans are at lower interest rates and more flexible terms than loans from a commercial bank.
Most types of businesses, including not-for-profit businesses, are eligible for NMTC investments. Ineligible businesses include: country clubs, golf courses, gaming businesses, massage parlors, and tanning salons. In addition, there are restrictions on making investments in large businesses with multiple locations in different census tracts. For more information about this program, click here.