The Commission operates several programs that provide grant or loan funds to accomplish specific economic revitalization objectives. All programs require dollar-for-dollar matching funds. See our Strategic Plan (PDF) for more information on specific program objectives and outcomes.
Research & Development
The Research and Development program seeks to provide funding to governmental or non-profit entities working with private partners to conduct post-proof of concept research with significant commercialization potential in the tobacco-dependent region.
The Special Projects program supports regional economic development projects, as well as those which expand access to healthcare for tobacco region residents.
Tobacco Region Opportunity Fund
The Tobacco Region Opportunity Fund provides performance-based monetary grants and loans to tobacco region localities to assist in the creation of new jobs and investments, whether through new business attraction or existing business expansion.
Southwest and Southside Economic Development
The Economic Development program seeks to diversify the economic base of Southern and Southwest Virginia through creation or improvement of sites, buildings and utility infrastructure, workforce training facilities, tourism infrastructure, etc. Two economic development committees exist, one for each region. (Note that Southside Economic Development funds are distributed under a formula that allocates the funds based on tobacco employment, warehousing and quota in each locality.)
The Agribusiness program makes strategic investments in projects that will diversify the long-term Agribusiness economy of Southern and Southwest Virginia and generate net new income for agricultural producers in those areas.
The Education program aims to prepare citizens for new-economy employment through GED and workforce development, higher education scholarship and loan programs for the two regions and competitive grants to community colleges as well as other post-secondary educational entities.