Virginia: An Ideal State for Business

Virginia is #4 on Forbes’ Best States for Business list because the Commonwealth offers state incentives that businesses need to prosper. The Office of Economic Development & Tourism is your partner and advocate and works with multiple state offices to coordinate support for businesses looking to locate or expand in the City of Lynchburg. When businesses are willing to invest in Virginia and our workers, the Commonwealth is willing to support business through targeted investments that provide immediate returns and long-term benefits for Virginia citizens. Visit the Virginia Economic Development Partnership or Request a Meeting with the Office of Economic Development & Tourism to learn more.

State Incentives & Programs

Commonwealth's Opportunity Fund

The Commonwealth’s Opportunity Fund (COF), formerly known as the Governor’s Opportunity Fund (GOF), is a discretionary incentive available to the Governor to secure a business location or expansion project for Virginia. Grants are awarded to localities on a local matching basis with the expectation that the grant will result in a favorable location decision for the Commonwealth.

Virginia Jobs Investment Program (VJIP)

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.Learn more

Governor’s Agriculture and Forestry Industries Development Fund (AFID)

For agricultural and forestry businesses that add value to Virginia-grown products, the Governor’s Agriculture and Forestry Industries Development Fund (AFID) may be available to them. AFID grants are made at the discretion of the Governor with the expectation that grants awarded to a political subdivision will result in a new or expanded processing/value-added facility for Virginia-grown agricultural or forestal products, and with the expectation that the grant will be critical to the success of the project. The amount of an AFID grant and the terms under which it is given are determined by the Secretary of Agriculture and Forestry and subject to the approval of the Governor. Learn more

Virginia Investment Partnership Grant

The Virginia Investment Partnership Grant (VIP) is a discretionary performance incentive 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.

The Virginia Economic Development Incentive Grant (VEDIG)

The 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 Credits

Virginia offers a variety of tax credits that are available for use against a company’s corporate tax liability:

  • Major Business Facility Job Tax Credit
  • Recycling Equipment Tax Credit
  • Day Care Facility Investment Tax Credit
  • Worker Retraining Tax Credit
  • Virginia Port Tax Credit Programs
  • Research and Development Tax Credit
  • Green Job Creation Tax Credit
Economic Development Access Program

Administered by the Virginia Department of Transportation, this program assists localities in providing adequate road access to new and expanding basic employers.

Transportation Partnership Opportunity Fund

TPOF is a discretionary grant available for transportation-related issues on unique economic development projects.

Rail Industrial Access Program

Provides funds to construct railroad tracks to new or substantially expanded industrial and commercial projects.

Foreign Trade Zone

The City of Lynchburg is located within the Western Virginia Foreign Trade Zone, FTZ No. 238 Dublin. 

A foreign trade zone (FTZ) is a secure and enclosed area, located near or in a Port of Entry. An FTZ is considered to be outside US customs territory, so foreign and domestic materials or merchandise may be moved into the FTZ without being subject to US customs duties until the goods enter US commerce. When merchandise is removed from a FTZ, custom duties may be eliminated if the goods are then exported outside the United States. If the merchandise is formally entered into US commerce, Customs duties are due at the time goods move outside the foreign trade zone.

For companies doing business outside of the US, there are many benefits to utilizing the Port of Entry and Foreign Trade Zone:

  • Companies can ship from any foreign locations directly to the Foreign Trade Zone or subzone, and can in-bond ship direct from any port, eliminating time delays occurring at other ports.
  • An increasing number of firms are making use of the ability to transfer merchandise from one zone to another. Because the merchandise is transported in-bond, Customs duties may be deferred until the product is removed from the zone for entry into US territory.
  • By using a foreign trade zone, companies are able to defer, reduce or, in some cases, eliminate duty charges, depending on the use of the incoming goods and whether the goods are ultimately exported or stay in the US.
  • The clearing of customs locally for freight and passengers is much quicker and convenient than the delays and waiting required at other Ports of Entry.
  • Many companies using FTZs find their inventory control systems run more efficiently, increasing their competitiveness. FTZ users also find meeting their FTZ reporting responsibilities to the US government makes them eligible for special Customs procedures such as direct delivery and weekly entry to expedite the movement of cargo.
  • Tangible personal property imported from outside the US and held in a zone, as well as produced in the US and held in a zone for exportation, are not subject to state and local taxes.

Contact Director of Economic Development & Tourism, Marjette Upshur at (434) 455-4490 or More information about foreign trade zones is available on the U.S. Government’s Foreign Trade Zones Board website. 

Industrial Revitalization Fund

The Industrial Revitalization Fund (IRF) leverages local and private resources to achieve market-driven redevelopment of vacant and deteriorated industrial and commercial properties.

The program is targeted toward vacant non-residential structures that create physicial and economic blight to their area due to their poor conditions. Eligible properties shall include those formerly used for manufacturing, warehousing, mining, transportation and power production, as well as large-scale white elephant structures, such as department stores, theaters, hotels and shopping centers. Structures for which the original intended use was solely residential are not eligible.

Only local governments (city, county or town),regional or local economic, or industrial development authorities may apply for the funds. However, localities may designate a redevelopment authority or other similar organization as the designated agent for implementation and administration of activities. Eligible applicants may also partner with private and nonprofit entities.

Contact Anna Bentson at for more information.