CITY OF NORFOLK ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT DEPARTMENT AWARDED THREE INTERNATIONAL AWARDS
BUSINESS RETENTION AND EXPANSION (BRE) ACTIVITIES DURING COVID-19 BIG WINNER
NORFOLK, VA -The City of Norfolk’s Economic Development Department has received high-profile recognition from the International Economic Development Council (IEDC), a leading economic development, and from Business Retention & Expansion International, a focused BRE strategy and certification organization for BRE professionals.
Two of the awards granted were for the Business and Retention efforts at the Coronavirus pandemic onset. The Economic Development Department started its extensive outreach and small business assistance effort to directly contact 1,000 Norfolk businesses by the first week in June. At the time of submissions, more than 350 businesses and received services and resources, and over $300,000 in grants and loans had been awarded utilizing existing funding sources. Nearly 210 “at-risk” small businesses utilized tools such as the Norfolk Disaster Assistance Loan, emerging federal business assistance programs, helping make B2B and B2G connections. The also department assisted as a broker of an array of non-financial resources. “Our efforts since mid-March have resulted in over $2.3 million going to existing small businesses to keep our businesses operating. This includes funds provided by the EDA as well as federal CARES Act funding provided by the Norfolk City Council,” said Jared Chalk, Director of Economic Development. “Our team will continue to push for delivery of these resources directly to small, minority, and women-owned businesses that have been effected by the pandemic.”
The IEDC honored Norfolk with a Gold Excellence in Economic Development Award for the “COVID-19 Business Retention and Recovery” project – Resiliency, Recovery and Mitigation, Population 200,000 – 500,000. The BREI recognized Norfolk with its Community Impact Award for the Multi-jurisdictional category based upon its strategy to work with regional organizations in partnership to accomplish shared goals.
A third award recognized the NorfolkDevelopment.com website with a Silver Excellence in Economic Development Award. The website is a staff product and developed with Agile principles and processes within six weeks.