Free Lance-Star reporter Robyn Sidersky covers Caroline County government and schools. You can reach her at 540/374-5413 or firstname.lastname@example.org. You can follow coverage on Facebook or Twitter as well.
Governor praises Caroline’s technology zone status
Governor Praises Caroline County As An Entire Technology Zone
July 15, 2011
Alan Partin, Interim County Administrator
Bowling Green, Virginia
The Caroline County Board of Supervisors in their July 12 meeting adopted an amendment to the County Technology Zone Ordinance making the entire County of Caroline a Technology Zone. Prior to the amendment, all primary and secondrary growth zones were designated as Technology Zones; approximately 30,000 acres.
With the ordinance amendment, all of Caroline County’s 549 miles now is emcompassed within the Technology Zone overlay.
Governor McDonnell recognized the Caroline initiaitive today by stating:
“Caroline County’s designation as a Technology Zone is significant news,” said Governor McDonnell. “It is unprecedented for an entire county to claim this advantage, and will give the locality a competitive edge in attracting the type of technology-based businesses that are vital to our economy. This designation is yet another reason that Virginia continues to lead the ranks as the best state in the nation in which to do business.”
The ordinace amendment was the innovation of Supervisor Bobby Popowicz of the Port Royal district who also serves as the Economic Development liaison for the Board of Supervisors. The Technology Zone overlay complements the Supervisor’s vision of Caroline being a strong contender for Technology business recruitment, and for making Caroline an employment community, not merely a bedroom community for surrounding urban areas.
A Technology Zone is the legal method to offer incentives to specified technology firms considering locating in a Virginia community.
Technology Zones act as an incentive overlay district that has no impact whatsoever on the land use zoning, taxes, or regulations of any kind. Caroline County’s first Technology Zone ordinance overlayed all categories of zoned land use since 2009 with no impact on the citizens who lived, farmed, or conducted business under the overlay district. No impact is anticpated to any Caroline resident due to the Technology Zone extension.
The comprehensive Technology Zone overlay enhances the County’s business recruitment efforts.
The ordinace amendment and designation of all of Caroline as a Technology Zone is a strong statement to the technology business sector that Caroline is serious about recruiting these industries. Coupled with some of the longest running and most generous incentives in Virginia for technology companies, Caroline is working to be a contender for this type of investment.
Also, the Technology Zone will overlay some properties that may be appropiate for hosting technology firms, but currently reside outside of the previous growth zone definition that applied to Caroline Technology Zones.
An example of a property that benefits from Technology Zone status is Remuda Ranch, a business site situated on 517 acres with a campus consisting of three main buildings with a total of 40,000 sq ft of space. The property is located outside the old Technology Zone designated area, so the new comprehensive definition will include this potential technology company campus.
Caroline County has been marketing the community with the Technology Zone designation since 2009. The program has a logo that is available to real estate brokers and land owners to use in their marketing materials, road side signage, and in County advertising pieces.
Gary R. Wilson
Director, Caroline County
Department of Economic Development & Tourism