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Sen. Tim Kaine tours Danville to better understand city’s economic development needs

Kaine met with city officials Monday

DANVILLE, Va. – Virginia Sen. Tim Kaine met with Danville city officials privately Monday to discuss current and future projects in the city.

The city officials then led him on a tour of downtown, starting in the 500 block of Craghead Street.

Kaine is well aware of the growth taking place in Danville, but he’s also well aware the coronavirus poses a threat to that growth.

Sen. Tim Kaine (blue jacket) discusses renovation plans for the 500 block of Craghead St. with developer Rick Barker (light blue shirt).
Sen. Tim Kaine (blue jacket) discusses renovation plans for the 500 block of Craghead St. with developer Rick Barker (light blue shirt). (Copyright 2020 by WSLS 10 - All rights reserved.)

“One of the things we’re hoping to do is go back retroactively and say, ‘Hey, local governments lost sales tax, meals tax, business license tax right away. You can see that in real time. They are to be able to use COVID dollars just like businesses or hospitals did, to include backstopping lost revenue,’” Kaine said.

The coronavirus isn’t the only issue city leaders are concerned is plaguing the city’s growth though.

“We also talked about some particular issues about legislation dealing with historic tax credits. There’s a house provision that folks here were interested in bringing to my attention as to whether we could do something on the Senate side, obviously. In the river district, so many great projects have been done since 2011 using the historic tax credit program,” said Kaine.

Danville Mayor Alonzo Jones said a big emphasis during the walking tour was on small businesses.

“How the small businesses are operating and the needs of small businesses, and hear from the small businesses. Danville is being spoken about all across the country now, and the efforts that we’ve taken in Danville. We don’t want to stop that progress,” Jones said.

Thankfully, help may be on the way.

Kaine said another COVID relief bill will be a top priority for lawmakers when Congress reconvenes later this month.

Kaine believes there is bipartisan support for that COVID relief bill, which he said will likely result in a three week work session for lawmakers when Congress reconvenes.


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