Commonwealth Supply Chain and Logistics Survey Underway

The Commonwealth Center for Advanced Logistics Systems (CCALS), in collaboration with the Virginia Economic Development Partnership (VEDP), the State Chamber of Commerce, and the Port of Virginia, has launched a survey of the Commonwealth’s Supply Chain and Logistics ecosystem.  The survey seeks input (opportunities/challenges) from BOTH providers of logistics (rail, truck, air, water, etc.) and those who rely on logistics (retailers, hospitals, manufacturers, energy, broadband, agriculture, etc.). Survey results will inform VEDP’s new logistics and supply chain programs/strategies, help guide policy initiatives, establish funding priorities, and advance projects along the way.

The initial survey is intended to be a high-level overview to inform and enhance logistics and supply chain conversations in Virginia. Follow-on analyses will likely be conducted to go deeper into regional results and industry-specific assessments, therefore statewide participation is strongly encouraged. The survey is being conducted by a multi-university team of five students – one from each of the CCALS’ member universities – VSU, VCU, ODU, UVA, and Longwood University.

More information and access to the survey can be found at:

2023 Virginia Farm to Table Conference Set for Dec. 12 & 13

The 2023 Virigina Farm to Table Conference is set for December 12 and 13 at Blue Ridge Community College’s Plecker Workforce Center. This year’s theme is “Nourishing and (Re)Imagining Collaboration, Conservation, and Community.”

Speakers and panelists will address and discuss regenerative agriculture, safety trauma, emotional ecology, drought resilience, managing pasture, the power of land and agency, community food webs and clusters, connections between soil health and human health, diversifying and stacking complementary enterprises, value chain connections, market development, local and regional food system development.

Learn more and register at


DHCD Releases 2024 VATI Program Guidelines and Criteria

The Virginia Department of Housing and Community Development (DHCD) recently issued the 2024 Virginia Telecommunications Initiative (VATI) program guidelines and criteria. The primary objective of the VATI grant is to provide financial assistance to supplement construction costs by private sector broadband service providers, in partnership with local units of government, to extend service to areas that presently are unserved by any broadband provider. All parties interested in applying for the 2024 VATI program were required to submit a non-binding VATI Notice of Application by October 19 to communicate their intent to apply. Within the CSPDC footprint, the following localities met this VATI requirement: Augusta and Rockbridge counties. Applications for the 2024 VATI program are due December 19. Proposals received under this program (sourced from the state general funding) will be scored, governed, and administered under the 2024 VATI guidelines and criteria.

A separate, but related program to bring universal broadband access across Virginia continues to progress forward. The Broadband Equity, Access, and Deployment (BEAD) Program provides grant funding under the Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act. The Commonwealth of Virginia is among the top 10 states to receive a BEAD allocation: nearly $1.5B. The BEAD program aims to expand high-speed internet access to unserved or underserved areas, businesses, and community anchor institutions. Access to DHCD’s Commonwealth Connect: BEAD Program Five-Year Plan, a strategy to bridge the digital divide, is available at the link below:

Application dates and deadlines for the BEAD program will be posted separately on the VATI website:

Lexington Approved for CDBG Planning Grant to Study Housing Conditions

In October, the City of Lexington and the CSPDC received an award notice for a $50,000 Community Development Block Grant from the Department of Housing and Community Development (DHCD). The awarded planning grant will allow the City to complete a city-wide housing conditions and infrastructure windshield survey and needs assessment. The awarded grant will build off the momentum gained in the past two years through the CSDPC’s regional housing study and the City’s local efforts to address housing. Additionally, the assessment will help to guide the future direction of grants and programs.

In August, CSPDC staff met with Lexington’s Threshold Housing Commission to discuss the proposed CDBG Planning Grant and potential future activities related to housing conditions in the City. Threshold has a long history of identifying housing rehabilitation needs in Lexington, and plans to use the proposed CDBG Planning Grant as an updated assessment of the City’s current needs. The proposed grant will provide both the City of Lexington and Threshold with recommended priority neighborhoods for future investment.

The City will need to complete a Facilitated Planning Session with DCHD before moving forward with the project. Once complete, the City will work with the CSPDC to release an RFP and identify a consultant to conduct the windshield survey and needs assessment.

SHD Aviation Tech Park Holds Ribbon Cutting

The Shenandoah Valley Regional Airport cut the grand opening ribbon for a long-envisioned hangar project in its Aviation Technology Park. Two 14,000 square foot corporate aircraft hangars will support aviation-related business growth in the region. The ribbon cutting event on November 6 celebrated the completion of the project and recognized the project’s partners including two federal agencies involved in its funding, USDA Rural Development and the U.S. Department of Commerce’s Economic Development Administration (EDA). The Shenandoah Valley Regional Airport Commission was awarded a $2 million grant from EDA for the project. The project is expected to create up to 75 high-paying jobs in the aviation technology and aviation maintenance sectors. The CSPDC was instrumental in helping the Shenandoah Valley Regional Airport apply for EDA funding and is providing grant administration services for the hangar project.

This achievement is the first step in a multi-phase master plan to build out the Aviation Technology Park and meet the demands of aviation related businesses and technologies in the area.  The Shenandoah Valley Regional Airport currently has a $993,300 GO Virginia Per Capita Allocation Grant to install water and sewer lines that will prepare the remainder of the site for future expansion. The Technology Park master plan supports the development of up to five additional hangers that would continue to expand the aviation industry in the region.

Mount Crawford Awarded Funding for Public Park

The Town of Mount Crawford was awarded over $300,000 to create the town’s first public park and space behind Town Hall and along the North River. The park will include a sensory trail, sensory playground, picnic shelter, bathroom, parking, native tree walk, and direct access to the North River for fishing and kayaking. The project also ties in to a recently completed boat launch.

The CSPDC assisted the Town with the grant application. The project is being funded through a Virginia Outdoors Foundation grant, which provides funding for projects that provide public access to outdoor spaces.

Bath County Earns $2M DHS REMCDP Grant

The Department of Homeland Security (DHS) issued a notice of award on September 28 to Bath County for $2,000,000 in funding under the Rural Emergency Medical Communications Demonstration Project (REMCDP) grant. The REMCDP seeks to leverage existing technologies and engage non-medical professionals to help establish or sustain statewide medical communications systems and use existing infrastructure to improve the delivery of rural medical care.

This funding stream will assist the Bath and Highland region with their efforts to modernize operability and interoperability systems within a unique geographical and federally restrictive communication setting. Both counties lie within the National Radio Quiet Zone which makes for a challenging environment to garner licensing for public safety and private radio systems. Each jurisdiction is also near the National Radio Astronomy Observatory and the National Security Agency Sugar Grove Listening Station. This proximity creates additional hurdles for the area’s communication strategy. The region’s population of approximately 6,350 is served by the Bath Community Hospital (a Critical Access Hospital) and the Highland Medical Center (a Federally Qualified Health Center).

The project period runs through September 2025. For more information on the DHS REMCDP program visit:, or contact the CSPDC at (540) 885-5174.