Craft Brewery Adds to Wise County Town’s Renaissance

In photo, from left, Jennifer Bailey, VCEDA Executive Director Jonathan Belcher, and Greg Bailey at Sugar Hill Brewing Co,

The Sugar Hill Brewing Co. on Broad Street in St. Paul, Va., is one of the area’s newest craft breweries and is one of five small businesses in the region selected to receive a $15,000 VCEDA Seed Capital Matching Grant approved by the VCEDA board at its June 15 meeting.

Businesses three years and under with less than 10 full-time employees are eligible to apply for these dollar-for-dollar matching grants up to $15,000, and applicants work with the Small Business Development Centers at Southwest Virginia and Mountain Empire community colleges to prepare the applications to VCEDA.
Sugar Hill’s owners Greg and Jennifer Bailey opened their craft brewery last September and say they will use the seed capital funding to add new dimensions to their business. Jennifer says that Sugar Hill is just one spoke in the wheel of change taking place in their hometown. 
 “We felt the town needed it, and it was something within our abilities and that’s why we did it, ” said Jennifer. “We’re just one spoke – there’s the Spearhead Trails efforts, new lodging and dining options, the new Western Front Hotel that will open really soon, the restoration of the Lyric Theater – these are all spokes contributing to the change taking place here.” VCEDA is also assisting with funding of the Spearhead Trails network and the Western Front Hotel.
For additional photos and more on the Sugar Hill Brewing Co. story, visit VCEDA’s Facebook page or VCEDA’s website.

VCEDA Helps Companies Increase International Sales

From left, in photo above, are Diane Thomas, VEDP-GGCET Program Manager; Steve Petrosky, The PBE Group; Gary Sergent, AMR Pemco; Matt Simmons, Simmons Equipment Co.; and Hayes Framme, Deputy Secretary of Commerce & Trade, Commonwealth of Virginia.

Five companies in the VCEDA region are the first graduates of the two-year Go Global with Coal & Energy Technology (GGCET) program, a collaborative effort of the Governor’s Office, the Virginia Economic Development Partnership (VEDP) and VCEDA, and patterned after VEDP’s Virginia Leaders in Export Trade (VALET) program. The five VCEDA region companies collectively increased their international sales by $2 million representing a 47 percent increase in their two years (2015-2017) in the program. Graduate companies include AMR Pemco, The PBE Group, Simmons Equipment Co., Ceramic Technology and Consolidated Steel.

Three other VCEDA region companies are participating in their second year of the GGCET program (2016-2018). These include Paul’s Repair Shop, Inc. in Buchanan County; Norris Screen and Manufacturing, LLC in Tazewell County; and West River Conveyors and Machinery Co. in Buchanan County.

“VCEDA was honored to partner and provide resources for the Go Global with Coal and Energy Technology program to assist these businesses in developing and increasing their export sales,” said J. P. Richardson, Chairman of the VCEDA board.

VCEDA Closes Loan on Senior Services Facility

VCEDA closed on a loan of up to $250,000 for the Appalachian Agency for Senior Citizens Falls Mills Adult Day Care Facility project July 19 at the AASC offices at Wardell. On hand for the ceremonial check presentation were AASC managers and Tazewell County officials including, from left, Tazewell County Attorney Eric Young; Carolyn Counts; Tazewell County Administrator Pat Green; Northern District Supervisor Maggie Asbury; AASC Executive Director Regina Sayers; and VCEDA Executive Director/General Counsel Jonathan Belcher; and (back) Joe Ratliff, Leah Call, Beverly Lester, Mary Bowen Colley, Dedra Helbert, Brian Beck, Tazewell County Economic Development Director Mike Thompson and Linda Hayes.

VCEDA closed a loan of up to $250,000 to the Appalachian Agency for Senior Citizens (AASC) on July 19 to be used to finance building construction and costs for the development of an adult day care/multipurpose senior services facility in the Falls Mills area of Tazewell County.

VCEDA’s board of directors previously approved the loan amount for the new facility, utilizing funds from Tazewell County’s designated account.

AASC is a non-profit Virginia corporation serving the four-county area of Buchanan, Dickenson, Russell and Tazewell counties.

“We are pleased to be able to assist in this project,” said Jonathan Belcher, VCEDA executive director/general counsel. “It will provide options for care for elderly Southwest Virginia residents, while at the same time providing jobs for the staff who will be put in place to operate it and the programs it will offer.”

Initial projections call for the facility to provide employment for four full-time and 14 part-time employees within one year. Within five years, AASC projections call for employment to reach five full-time and 20 part-time employees. For news release, click here.