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Developing a Diverse Economy in Southern and Southwest Virginia


TOBACCO REGION REVITALIZATION COMMISSION REVISES OPPORTUNITY FUND GUIDELINES


Revisions to Allow For Loans and Smaller Project Grants T


he Tobacco Region Revitalization Commission recently made important revisions to its Tobacco


Region Opportunity Fund program (TROF). T ese revisions aff ect when, and in what amount, funds may be awarded through the TROF program. T e TROF program provides grants to localities


in Southern and Southwest Virginia to help create new jobs. Usually these grants are used to either attract new businesses to an area or help an existing business expand. Recipients are required to meet objectives related to jobs created and capital invest- ment as a part of the TROF agreement.


Changes to the TROF Guidelines Include:


• T e option to receive funds in the form of a loan instead of a grant.


• Grants and loans may be awarded in amounts as low as $10,000 rather than the previous fl oor of $50,000.


• Loans may be off ered up to 150% of the calculated award amount.


In the past TROF funds have only been made


available in the form of grants in amounts over $50,000. T is had the eff ect of limiting the ability of smaller projects to obtain TROF funds under the Commission’s incentive formula.


Tobacco Commission Vice-Chair, Senator Frank Ruff , noted the impact the revisions will have on smaller businesses “In this action, the Commission is trying to better serve the small businesses of the region. We believe that this will allow smaller businesses to increase their ability to grow while expanding employment opportunities for their fellow citizens.”


It should be noted that the Commission’s incen-


tive formula itself remains unchanged at this time. For more information about the TROF program


please contact Tobacco Commission Deputy Director Chris Piper. Chris can be reached by email at Chris. Piper@tic.virginia.gov or by phone at 804-786-7690.


About T e Tobacco Region Revitalization Commission


T e Tobacco Region Revitalization Commission is a 28-member body created by the 1999 General Assembly. Its mission is the promotion of economic growth and development in tobacco-dependent communities, using proceeds of the national tobacco settlement. To date, the Commission has awarded nearly 2000 grants totaling more than $1 billion across the tobacco region of the Commonwealth, and has provided $309 million in indemnifi cation payments to tobacco growers and quota holders.


If you would like more information about this topic, please contact Chris Piper at: (804)786-7690 • chris.piper@tic.virginia.gov


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