In addition to the many programs offered by the City of Virginia Beach, the Commonwealth of Virginia also offers a number of incentives to assist business growth and encourage startups. These include: financial assistance, facilities development grants, tax credits and exemptions. Virginia also offers work-force training and technical support programs.
Below are a few of the most popul ar programs. For more information, refer to the 2016-2017 Virginia Guide to Business Incentives.
Commonwealth’s Opportunity Fund
The Commonwealth’s Opportunity Fund (COF) is a discretionary financial incentive established to support projects that
create new jobs and investment in accordance with certain criteria established by state legislation. Grants are made to the community and may be used for such things as site acquisition and development; transportation access; public or private utility extension or capacity development; construction or build-out of publicly or privately owned buildings or training.
Grant requests are made by the community for a project under the following conditions:
- Projects must meet investment, job creation, and wage minimums to be eligible
- Matching local financial participation is required on a dollar-for-dollar basis (cash or in-kind)
- Public announcement of the project must be coordinated by the Virginia Economic Development Partnership and the
- Governor’s Office (neither the company nor the locality may publicly confirm the proposed project)
- Grants are made at the discretion of the Governor
Once a company decides on a Virginia location, the community works with the state within the guidelines of the program to seek a COF award. The application and success of the grant request will be based on the project’s eligibility and the locality’s financial support toward the project, as well as the actual project requirements and availability of funds. The community is required to enter into a performance agreement with the company before receipt of the grant to document performance expectations.
Virginia Jobs Investment Program
The Virginia Jobs Investment Program (VJIP)
is an incentive program offering customized recruiting and training assistance to companies that are creating new jobs or experiencing technological change. The program is designed to reduce human resource development cost by providing direct funding to qualifying new and expanding companies.
Virginia Investment Partnership Act/Major Eligible Employer GrantThe Virginia Investment Partnership (VIP) Grant and the Major Eligible Employer Grant (MEE) are discretionary performance incentives designed to encourage continued capital investment by Virginia companies, resulting in added capacity, modernization, increased productivity, or the creation, development and utilization of advanced technology.
Virginia Economic Development Incentive GrantThe Virginia Economic Development Incentive Grant (VEDIG) is a discretionary performance incentive, designed to assist and encourage companies to invest and create new employment opportunities by locating significant headquarters, administrative or service sector operations in Virginia.
Corporate Income Tax The Virginia corporate income tax rate is a flat 6 percent; however, the sales factor in the state's income apportionment formula is double weighted, benefiting companies with high payrolls and property in Virginia.
Sales and Use Tax Exemptions
Virginia has one of the lowest sales tax rates in the country - 6 percent (4.3 percent state, 1 percent local, 0.7 percent transportation). There are some exemptions, such as items purchased for resale or used in manufacturing, pollution control devices, purchases used in research and development, and charges for utilities and Internet access. Computer equipment purchased or leased for the processing, storage, retrieval, or communication of data in large data centers will also qualify for this tax exemption.
Property Tax Incentives
Virginia does not tax property at the state level. Real estate and tangible personal property are taxed at the local level. Items not taxed in Virginia include manufacturers' inventory, intangible property and furniture/fixtures.
Worker Retraining Tax Credit
Employers can receive tax credits for 30 percent of expenditures on worker retraining programs for qualified employees. The credit is capped at $2.5 million in a taxable year. Eligible programs include courses at Virginia community colleges certified by the Virginia Department of Business Assistance, or apprenticeship agreements certified by the Virginia Apprenticeship Council. For more information, visit the Virginia Department of Business Assistance
Major Business Facility Job Tax Credit
Companies locating or expanding in Virginia can receive a corporate income tax credit for each new full-time job created beyond 50 jobs - or 25 jobs for companies locating in an Enterprise Zone or economically distressed area. Jobs that do not qualify include seasonal or building-related and security positions.
Virginia Leaders in Export Trade (VALET)
This program assists companies throughout Virginia in expanding their international business. VALET offers a powerful combination of capital resources provided by the state along with professional services from expert, private-sector partners. Each year, 25 qualifying companies ramp up their global marketing efforts through this program. Companies graduate from this comprehensive, two-year business acceleration program with greater focus on the potential of export trade profits. On average, companies experience an 54 percent increase in international sales during and immediately following the program. Learn more about VALET.
Green Job Creation Tax Credit
This tax credit for "green" companies awards an annual tax credit of $500 for each salary that is $50,000 or more for up to 350 jobs. The credit is allowed in the first taxable year after the job has been filled for at least one year and in each of the four succeeding years. Green jobs are related to the field of renewable, alternative energies.
Virginia Department of Taxation
P.O. Box 115 Richmond, Virginia 23218