West Virginia Department of Commerce Certified Development Community Program

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Certified Development Community Program

Type of assistance: Community-based program with technical support.

Purpose: In the extremely competitive field of economic development, those with the highest degree of readiness are most likely to succeed. The West Virginia Certified Development Community (CDC) program prepares and equips communities across the state to respond to the needs of existing and prospective business and industry.

Program requirements: For the purpose of this program, a community is either a county or multi-county region. Successful applicants must fulfill one of the following tracks:

Industrial Park Track

  • Designation or establishment of a local economic development organization and formation of a prospect handling team
  • Completion of a comprehensive community assessment and community profile and development of a strategic plan to address deficiencies
  • Establishment of an active business retention and expansion program
  • Identification of available industrial / commercial sites and buildings
  • Development of a fully served, locally-controlled industrial site.

Every three years, counties with the Industrial Park Track CDC designation must submit a recertification application that includes the following:

  • An updated community profile
  • A long-range strategic plan
  • A long-range funding plan
  • An economic development evaluation.

Entrepreneurial Track

Entrepreneurs are the new prototype for economic development. Many local economic development authorities have no formal program to develop this potential within their communities.

A community’s preparation will be facilitated by successfully completing the Certified Development Community Entrepreneur Track requirements and becoming “certified.” Successful entrants will have to fulfill three main objectives:

  • Establishment of an Entrepreneurial Leadership Team Visitation Protocol and Community Assessment / Profile
  • Strategic Planning / Outcome Measurements

Recertification for the Entrepreneurial Track is due every three years, as well as, an annual report which must be submitted along with the Local Development (LED) annual grant application.

Eligible applicants: Entry into the Certified Development Community program is open at any time to any community in West Virginia. For the purpose of the program, a community is either a county or a multi-county region.

Contact: For additional information about the Certified Development Community (CDC) program, please call the West Virginia Development Office at 800-982-3386, or 304-558-2234.