Governor’s Report

Virginia Governor Terry McAuliffe released a report titled “New Virginia Economy,” his administration’s recommendations for how to reposition the state economy to support more economic growth by increasing private sector jobs. A significant percentage of the Commonwealth’s economic activity takes place in NoVA, so this report has particular relevance for our region. The recommendations are aligned under five priorities: ‘project ready’ infrastructure, diversified high-growth industries, preeminent business climate, innovation and entrepreneurs, and ‘credentials to careers’ workforce.
 
It is encouraging to note that within the goals and strategies for ‘project ready’ infrastructure, there is a section on housing that begins with the statement that “Quality affordable housing is a core component of sustainable economic growth. Housing is foundational for a high quality workforce, great school performance and healthy communities.”

This section goes on to define some modest steps to support and preserve affordable and mixed-income housing that include linking housing and economic and community development. One bullet point states the goal of ‘creating affordable housing that meets the needs of working Virginians in areas where high housing costs impede economic development, productivity and the quality of life.’ That statement is encouraging for Northern Virginians who are struggling with high costs and flat wages.

While no new funding was identified in this report, it is in the interest of housing advocates to follow the work of the New Virginia Economy Steering Committee which has been charged with implementing this four year plan. Any and all discussions of housing needs should be monitored and supported. At the local level, some jurisdictions are having similar conversations about how to jump-start economic growth and development, as we transition from our over-reliance on the public sector and federal contracts to a more diversified economy.

See the entire report here New Virginia Economy