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LATEST COVID-19 NEWS FROM THE CITY AND STATE - CLICK ON HEADLINES FOR THE FULL RELEASE

Governor Northam Signs Revised State Budget That Makes Key Investments, Provides Critical Relief During COVID-19 Pandemic

November 18, 2020

Governor Ralph Northam today signed House Bill 5005, Virginia’s revised biennial budget. Budget includes eviction moratorium, support for utility customers.


Governor Northam Announces New Statewide Measures to Contain COVID-19

November 13, 2020

As COVID-19 surges in states across the country, Governor Ralph Northam today announced new actions to mitigate the spread of the virus in Virginia.


Joint-Use Library Now Open to Public for Limited Services

November 10, 2020

The TCC/City of Virginia Beach Joint-Use Library (JUL), jointly operated by Virginia Beach Public Library (VBPL) and Tidewater Community College (TCC), reopened this week for members of the public.


Governor Northam Allocates $60 Million in CARES Act Funding for Municipal Utility Relief

November 9, 2020

Total of $120 million will provide payment support for customers impacted by COVID-19 pandemic.


Governor Northam Directs $7 Million in CARES Act Funding to Virginia Food Banks

November 9, 2020

Governor Ralph Northam today announced that Virginia will allocate $7 million in federal Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act dollars to Virginia food banks to help Virginians who rely on food assistance.


Short-Term Mortgage Assistance Still Available to Help Virginia Beach Homeowners Impacted by COVID-19

November 4, 2020

Low- and moderate-income Virginia Beach homeowners who have experienced loss of employment income due to COVID-19 and who are at risk of foreclosure are encouraged to apply for the City's Short-Term Mortgage Assistance program.


COVID-19 Real Estate and Personal Property Tax Relief Program Application Deadline Extended to Nov. 30

October 28, 2020

The Department of Human Services will continue to accept applications for the COVID-19 Real Estate and Personal Property Tax Relief Program through Nov. 30.

  • Governor Northam Announces Over $9 Million in GO Virginia Grants to Spur Economic Recovery, Support Long-Term Growth - Tuesday, November 3, 2020
  • Governor Northam Announces Over $9 Million in GO Virginia Grants to Spur Economic Recovery, Support Long-Term Growth

    November 2, 2020

    Funding to advance regional workforce development programs, business scale-up initiatives in response to COVID-19 pandemic.

    Governor Ralph Northam today announced two allocations of Growth and Opportunity for Virginia (GO Virginia) grants, totaling more than $9 million.

    The first allocation of more than $7.8 million will support 11 regional projects and two statewide projects. The funding will help advance innovative workforce development initiatives designed to expand employment in the technology and maritime sectors and grow Virginia’s portfolio of business-ready sites. The grant awards will leverage an additional $15 million in non-state resources to support ongoing recovery and economic diversification efforts throughout Virginia.

    The second allocation of over $1.4 million was awarded to 19 projects through the new Economic Resilience and Recovery Program that created by the GO Virginia Board in April to quickly deploy resources that will help communities mitigate the economic impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic. Information on the projects receiving funding through this program is available here.

    “The GO Virginia program continues to demonstrate how regional collaboration can give rise to innovative projects that deliver real economic impact, especially during challenging times like those we face right now,” said Governor Northam. “These projects will increase workforce capacity, enhance Virginia’s competitive business environment, and support our ongoing efforts to build resilient communities that are well-positioned for future success and growth.”

    “The projects are a testament to the GO Virginia Regional Councils’ leadership and their ability to respond to our current crisis while remaining committed to the program mission of growing regional economies and creating good jobs for Virginians,” said Secretary of Commerce and Trade Brian Ball. “We celebrate these grantees and their innovative projects that will transform the business landscape, both during this period of pandemic recovery and as we continue working to diversify Virginia’s economy.”

    “The recent efforts of the GO Virginia program illustrate how the Commonwealth can focus on critical short-term economic needs and continue to invest in transformational, long-term economic growth,” said Chairman of the GO Virginia State Board Tom Farrell. “These grants represent a combination of ingenuity and resilience during a time of continued challenges due to the COVID-19 pandemic.”

    Since the program’s inception in 2017, GO Virginia has funded 138 projects and awarded approximately $43.8 million to support regional economic development efforts. More information about the GO Virginia program can be found here. The GO Virginia Board includes key members of the Governor’s cabinet, the business community, and the General Assembly.

    2020 ROUND THREE STATEWIDE GRANT AWARDS

    Virginia Small Business Development Center Cash Match 2020-2021
    $1,000,000

    The Virginia Small Business Development Center (SBDC) will expand its services for small businesses by providing matching funds required to access the full funding available from the Small Business Administration (SBA), which has a 1:1 match requirement with 50 percent cash.

    Virtual Virginia Workforce
    $1,500,000 (Phase I skills gap analysis authorized)

    Region 4: Counties of Charles City, Chesterfield, Dinwiddie, Goochland, Greensville, Hanover, Henrico, New Kent, Powhatan, Prince George, Surry, and Sussex and the cities of Colonial Heights, Emporia, Hopewell, Petersburg, and Richmond

    Region 5: Counties of Isle of Wight, James City, Southampton, and York and the cities of Chesapeake, Franklin, Hampton, Newport News, Norfolk, Poquoson, Portsmouth, Suffolk, Virginia Beach, and Williamsburg

    Old Dominion University’s Virginia Modeling, Analysis, and Simulation Center (VMASC), Battel College of Engineering, and the Commonwealth Center for Advanced Manufacturing (CCAM) will conduct a skills gap analysis and develop state-of-the-art advanced manufacturing training programs using augmented reality and simulation.

    2020 ROUND THREE REGIONAL GRANT AWARDS

    Ignite Tech Talent Pipeline
    $251,960

    Region 1: Counties of Bland, Buchanan, Carroll, Dickenson, Grayson, Lee, Russell, Scott, Smyth, Tazewell, Washington, Wise, and Wythe and the cities of Bristol, Galax, and Norton

    The United Way of Southwest Virginia will develop a talent pipeline of IT workers that will assess employer needs, align curriculum, provide career guidance for young people, expand internship experiences, and increase the secondary and post-secondary education systems’ capacity to prepare students for information technology occupations.

    William King Museum of Art – Digital Workforce Development
    $70,910

    Region 1: Counties of Smyth and Washington and the town of Abingdon

    The William King Museum of Art will develop a Digital Art Laboratory to provide a novel approach to digital design training. Students will have access to the most current designer software and 3-D prototyping equipment available, making their skills more valuable to companies.

    Lonesome Pine Regional Industrial Facilities Authority (RIFA) Project Intersection
    $485,000

    Region 1: Counties of Dickenson, Lee, Scott, and Wise and the city of Norton

    The Lonesome Pine RIFA will develop and repurpose a former 188-acre mine site in Norton. The site will provide four site-ready pad locations to include associated infrastructure, site-work, access roads, and amenities.

    Experiential Learning in Tech Employment (ELITE) Internship Program
    $290,000

    Region 2: Montgomery County and the city of Roanoke

    The Roanoke-Blacksburg Technology Council (RBTC) will provide internship opportunities for students earning a software developer degree at a regional four-year university and connect them with small-based technology companies that do not have the expertise or capacity to manage an internship program.

    Amherst Lynchburg Site Readiness
    $366,572

    Region 2: Counties of Amherst, Appomattox, Bedford, and Campbell, the city of Lynchburg, and the town of Amherst

    The Lynchburg Regional Business Alliance (LRBA) will advance a portfolio of six existing commercial and industrial sites along the site readiness scale to at least Tier 3 for the Virginia Business Ready Sites Program (VBRSP).

    New River Valley COVID-19 Business Continuity Team
    $250,000

    Region 2: Counties of Floyd, Giles, Montgomery, and Pulaski and the city of Radford

    The New River Valley Regional Commission (NRVRC) will provide employers impacted by COVID-19 with 24/7 technical assistance from the Business Continuity Team (BCT) related to public relations and messaging, facility cleaning, certification of best practices, and coordination of on-site testing.

    Hampton Roads Workforce Council Talent Pipeline Implementation Project
    $663,696

    Region 5: Counties of Isle of Wight, James City, Southampton, and York and the cities of Chesapeake, Franklin, Hampton, Newport News, Norfolk, Poquoson, Portsmouth, Suffolk, Virginia Beach, and Williamsburg

    The Hampton Roads Workforce Council (HRWC) will lead a comprehensive, data-driven approach to build a target-talent pipeline for the maritime industry in the Hampton Roads region. The initiative will include extensive employer engagement, aligning higher education curriculum and mandatory job requirements, on-the-job and incumbent worker training, regional apprenticeships, military and veteran outreach, college student engagement and graduate retention, talent portal development, soft skills development, and a workforce development alliance.

    Hampton Roads Economic Development Sites Readiness Program
    $1,122,240

    Region 5: Isle of Wight County and the cities of Newport News and Virginia Beach

    The Hampton Roads Planning District Commission (HRPDC) will advance a portfolio for three existing sites along the site readiness scale to a Tier 4 for the Virginia Business Ready Sites Program (VBRSP).

    Germanna Community College Tech Talent Pipeline
    $634,938

    Region 6: Counties of Caroline, King George, Spotsylvania, and Stafford and the city of Fredericksburg

    The Germanna Community College Foundation will develop tech talent career pathways for more than 200 middle and high school students and adults seeking computer science, cyber-related, and engineering occupations. The initiative will create a new Engineering Technology-Mechatronics two-year certificate program and a Computer Science and Cyber Pathway.

    Governor’s Health Sciences Academy Community Medi-corps Program
    $700,000

    Region 7: Arlington County and the city of Alexandria

    The new Governor’s Health Sciences Academy Community Medi-corps Program will engage and prepare students for career pathways in the biomedical, lab sciences, and pharmaceutical industries. George Washington University’s Virginia Science and Technology Campus, in partnership with the Arlington Public Schools and the Alexandria Governor’s Health Sciences Academy, will create a mobile Immersive Learning Center that will provide state-of-the-art technology, simulation, and virtual hands-on activities, combined with work-based learning to streamline entry points into the region’s health sciences workforce. This initiative introduces an expanded use of curriculum, mentoring, internships, resources, and the introduction of a mobile Immersive Learning Center for Alexandria City Public Schools and Arlington Public Schools students through leveraged partnerships with business, industry, and higher education expertise.

    Northern Virginia Biosciences Center
    $500,000

    Region 7: Counties of Fairfax, Loudoun, and Prince William counties and the city of Manassas

    Prince William County will support the development of a 30,000- square-foot, state-of the-art wet lab facility to attract new life sciences companies to the region and provide step-up spaces to existing life sciences companies that are outgrowing the Prince William County Life Sciences Accelerator.

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  • Governor Northam Announces $22 Million for Virginia COVID-19 Vaccination Program - Friday, October 23, 2020
  • Governor Northam Announces $22 Million for Virginia COVID-19 Vaccination Program

    October 23, 2020

    Funding will support statewide vaccination program when vaccine is approved.

    Governor Ralph Northam today announced $22 million in federal Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act funding will be used to create a statewide program to distribute COVID-19 vaccines when such vaccines are approved for public use. Virginia’s draft vaccination plan was submitted to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) earlier this month.

    Several companies are working to create COVID-19 vaccines, which are expected to be finalized and approved for distribution in the coming months. A mass vaccination program such as this requires significant advance planning for purchases of equipment, support for local health districts, staff to manage the program, warehousing medical supplies, and communicating with the public.

    “We look forward to the day that a safe vaccine for COVID-19 is available for public use, so that we can get closer to living normal lives,” said Governor Northam. “We want to be ready to help Virginians get that vaccine as quickly, efficiently, and safely as possible. This funding will support the Virginia Department of Health’s vaccine preparations, so distribution will go more smoothly when a vaccine becomes available. I encourage Virginians to get this vaccine when it is available—that is our best way to end this pandemic.”

    The $22 million allocation of CARES Act dollars will support the Virginia Department of Health’s vaccination preparation and planning through the end of 2020. The Commonwealth will identify additional sources of funding to continue to support the vaccination program in 2021. The Virginia Department of Health’s estimates the vaccination program will cost approximately $120 million.

    The plan outlines key components for preparing and implementing a COVID-19 vaccination program including:

    • Assumptions, variables, and scenarios that can impact vaccine planning
    • Measures to identify and estimate critical populations and establish vaccine priority groups
    • Measures for provider recruitment, enrollment, and training
    • Process for vaccine allocation, ordering, distribution, inventory management, and reporting doses administered
    • Guidelines for appropriate vaccine storage and handling
    • Methods for second dose reminders to ensure compliance with vaccine dosing intervals (most COVID-19 vaccines require two doses separated by 21 or 28 days) and achieve optimal vaccine effectiveness
    • Systems for vaccine safety monitoring
    • Procedures for vaccination program monitoring, including online dashboards
    • Efforts to build confidence and inform the public about the safety and efficacy of the vaccine, working with trusted community partners

    The Virginia Department of Health, like health departments in other states, is following guidance from the federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention in preparing for vaccine distribution, and will ensure that a vaccine is distributed equitably. It is not currently known what vaccines might ultimately be approved of those in development, which means the Virginia Department of Health’s planning must be flexible. Vaccines may require more than one dose and may require storage at specific cold temperatures to remain effective. Health officials are planning for ways to vaccinate large numbers of people while maintaining social distancing.

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  • Governor Northam Announces $65.8 Million to Increase Child Care Access, Help Providers - Wednesday, October 21, 2020
  • Governor Northam Announces $65.8 Million to Increase Child Care Access, Help Providers

    October 21, 2020

    New funding will continue child care provider incentive grant program established in April

    Governor Ralph Northam and First Lady Pamela Northam today announced $65.8 million in new funding to increase access to child care and support child care providers amid the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. This new investment is supported by $58.3 million in Coronavirus Relief Fund dollars as well as a reallocation of $7.5 million in Child Care and Development Block Grant (CCDBG) funding through the federal Coronavirus Aid, Recovery, and Economic Security (CARES) Act. First Lady Northam made the announcement during a virtual meeting of the Children’s Cabinet.

    “Our ongoing COVID-19 response and recovery depends upon having a child care system that is both accessible and operational,” said Governor Northam. “Early childhood educators have been on the frontlines since COVID-19 pandemic started, going above and beyond to keep their doors open, ensure children are safe, and even fill in the gaps with remote learning as schools have reopened. This new funding will help them continue to support working families and enable more programs to safely provide in-person child care.”

    This funding will continue the incentive grant program for child care providers announced in April through the end of 2020. This program provides flexible cash assistance to child care providers to help offset operating costs and expenses associated with meeting health and safety guidelines. The Virginia Department of Social Services, in partnership with the Virginia Department of Education, has distributed more than $46 million in direct assistance to child care programs to date.

    “Virginia’s early educators are truly superheroes, and thousands of our families rely on them every day,” said First Lady Northam. “After listening to providers across the Commonwealth, it was clear that continuing this incentive grant program had to be our top priority. I am thrilled we were able to get it done, and I look forward to continuing to support early childhood education during this difficult time.”

    Nearly 2,672 child care programs in Virginia—nearly 45 percent—closed their doors at the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic, but thanks to more than $70 million in grants and other relief, many either have reopened or are starting to. Providers have reported that this funding is critical and many indicated that without additional financial support, they were unsure how long they could continue to operate.

    “Child care plays an essential role in providing high-quality, safe learning environments for Virginia's children while ensuring their parents and caregivers are able to work,” said Secretary of Health and Human Resources Daniel Carey, MD, MHCM. “Serving working families remains a top priority and we will continue to do all we can to support them.”

    Child care programs have also stepped up to serve children who are participating in virtual learning, ensuring that they have safe, supervised spaces with access to food, supplies, and internet. At least half of open child care programs have reported serving school-age children, and this new funding will also help communities establish public-private partnerships to meet the needs of working families with school-age children.

    “Access to child care, especially from birth to age 12, is key to our economic recovery, financial stability for families, and helping Virginia’s children succeed in school,” said Virginia Department of Social Services Commissioner S. Duke Storen. “This additional funding provides a critical financial lifeline to the many working parents who depend on child care programs.”

    Distribution of these funds will be announced by the Virginia Department of Social Services in the coming weeks. A comprehensive guide to COVID-19 child care resources in Virginia is available here. Additional health and safety guidance for Child care centers that remain open can be found here.

    Parents who are in need of child care services should visit Child Care Aware at VAchildcare.org or call 1-866-KIDS-TLC for an up-to-date list of child care options in their area.

    # # #

  • Governor Northam Signs New Laws to Support COVID-19 Response, Reform Policing - Wednesday, October 21, 2020
  • Governor Northam Signs New Laws to Support COVID-19 Response, Reform Policing

    October 20, 2020

    Governor amended bills relating to traffic stops, telemedicine.

    Governor Ralph Northam today announced he has signed 16 new laws and proposed changes to five bills that will support the Commonwealth’s ongoing COVID-19 response and advance criminal justice reform.

    “I am proud to sign new laws that strengthen our COVID-19 response efforts and make our criminal system more equitable,” said Governor Northam. “I am grateful to legislators for their hard work this session, and look forward to signing more critically important legislation in the coming days.”

    Governor Northam signed the following laws to support COVID-19 response and recovery efforts:

    • House Bill 5041 (Delegate Head) and Senate Bill 5042 (Senator Kiggans) require the Board of Health to establish protocols related to safe nursing home, hospice, and nursing facility visits.
    • House Bill 5048 (Delegate Sickles) and Senate Bill 5090 (Senator Dunnavant) provide additional clarity to the Virginia Department of Health regarding publication of disease outbreak data.
    • House Bill 5093 (Delegate Watts) and Senate Bill 5117 (Senator Deeds) allow a $500 civil penalty for violations of a Governor’s Executive Order, instead of the Class 1 misdemeanor currently dictated by Virginia Code.
    • House Bill 5047 (Delegate Murphy) strengthens Virginia’s anti-price gouging laws during declared states of emergency.
    • Senate Bill 5039 (Senator Marsden) establishes a formal program for the purchase and distribution of personal protective equipment during a public health threat.
    • House Bill 5087 (Delegate Tran) extends the date by which the Virginia Employment Commission is required to establish and implement a short-time compensation program and removes the program’s sunset clause.
    • Senate Bill 5083 (Senator McClellan) requires Virginia school boards to publicly post their plans and strategies for mitigating the spread of COVID-19.
    • Senate Bill 5017 (Senator Boysko) grants the Commonwealth the ability to establish and enforce health standards at local correctional facilities used by U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement or other federal agencies.

    Governor Northam signed the following laws to reform criminal justice and policing:

    • House Bill 5098 (Delegate Askew) increases the penalty for falsely summoning or giving false reports to law enforcement officers due to an individual’s race, religious conviction, gender, disability, gender identity, sexual orientation, color, or national origin.
    • House Bill 5072 (Delegate Lopez) and Senate Bill 5024 (Senator Lucas) allow the Attorney General to open investigations related to a suspected “pattern or practice” of misconduct among law enforcement officers.
    • House Bill 5062 (Delegate Mullin) and Senate Bill 5033 (Senator Surovell) restore the practice of requiring judges to dismiss charges when both parties (prosecution and defense) agree.

    Governor Northam proposed changes to the following bills:

    • House Bill 5046 (Delegate D. Adams) and Senate Bill 5080 (Senator Barker) expand Medicaid coverage of telemedicine care. Governor Northam added an emergency clause to make this legislation effective immediately upon passage.
    • House Bill 5115 (Delegate Price) expands eviction protections for Virginians who experienced a loss of wages due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Governor Northam added an emergency clause to make this legislation effective immediately upon passage.
    • House Bill 5058 (Delegate Hope) and Senate Bill 5029 (Senator Lucas) prohibit law enforcement from initiating traffic stops in certain instances. Governor Northam amended this legislation to ensure law enforcement can initiate a traffic stop when an individual is driving at night without the use of both headlights and/or without the use of both brake lights.

    A full list of legislation signed by the Governor from the Special Session can be found here.

    # # #

  • Governor Northam Releases Virginia Roadmap to End Hunger - Tuesday, October 20, 2020
  • Governor Northam Releases Virginia Roadmap to End Hunger

    October 20, 2020

    Establishes an ambitious path forward to combat food insecurity during COVID-19 pandemic and beyond.

    Governor Ralph Northam today released the inaugural Virginia Roadmap to End Hunger, which establishes a unified set of goals and strategies to prioritize food security during the current public health emergency and beyond. The Roadmap was produced by Governor Northam’s Children’s Cabinet.

    In Virginia and across the country, food insecurity rates are increasing, with an estimated 445,000 additional Virginians experiencing food insecurity because of the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. Prior to the onset of this public health crisis, approximately 850,000 Virginians were food insecure, including 250,000 children.

    “This pandemic has created challenges for the entire food system and added new burdens on thousands of Virginia families,” said Governor Northam. “Since the beginning of our Administration, we have prioritized addressing nutrition and food insecurity, and that work has never been more relevant than it is today. The Virginia Roadmap to End Hunger looks beyond our current struggles and outlines a way forward to end hunger in the Commonwealth and ensure equitable access to healthy, affordable food for all Virginians.”

    The Virginia Roadmap to End Hunger lays out opportunities to reduce food insecurity in the Commonwealth, and critical next steps to develop policies, programs, and partnerships to benefit Virginia’s children and communities.

    “Keeping all Virginians healthy requires our commitment to keeping them nourished,” said First Lady Pamela Northam. “This is an important resource that supports food access for all Virginians including our littlest learners, students, families, and seniors. I am grateful to the members of the Children’s Cabinet working group who have worked diligently to create the Roadmap as a path forward.”

    The COVID-19 pandemic has brought renewed attention to the broader social determinants of health including food security. The Virginia Roadmap to End Hunger includes goals and strategies to:

    • Expand child nutrition programs
    • Increase participation in the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) and Women Infant and Children (WIC) Program
    • Increase nutrition support for seniors
    • Grow access to local food for schools and families
    • Strengthen connections between food access programs and the healthcare sector
    • Encourage food and agriculture investments in food deserts and marginalized communities
    • Amplify public awareness of hunger in Virginia and support information sharing across public and private sectors
    • Support community organizing to combat food insecurity and hunger

    “Over the past seven years, Virginia has become a national model for closing the hunger gap, but there is still much work to be done,” said Dorothy McAuliffe, Chair of the Virginia No Kid Hungry Campaign and former First Lady of Virginia. “It will require a commitment to collaboration at the state and local level to ensure we have equitable access to nutritious foods and equal opportunity to grow and thrive. The Roadmap to End Hunger builds on our past successes and serves as a foundation to a food secure future for the Commonwealth.”

    To create the Roadmap, the Northam Administration, in partnership with the Virginia Department of Social Services and the Federation of Virginia Food Banks, held listening sessions to gather input from stakeholder groups, community leaders, and Virginians that work in and are impacted by the food system. The seven listening sessions were held in Abingdon, Roanoke, Danville, Hampton, Fairfax County, Norfolk, and Richmond.

    “While we have made significant progress in recent years and over the last seven months responding to increased poverty and food insecurity, too many Virginians continue to struggle with hunger,” said Virginia Department of Social Services Commissioner S. Duke Storen. “This Roadmap outlines the key strategies that state government and every Commonwealth community can take to ensure that Virginians receive the nutrition they need to thrive. We must double down on our work to turn the Roadmap into meaningful action.”

    “Collectively, Virginia’s seven regional food banks represent the largest charitable response to hunger in the Commonwealth, providing 120 million pounds of food to nearly one million individuals each year,” said Eddie Oliver, Executive Director of the Federation of Virginia Food Banks. “In a state as rich in resources as ours, there is simply no reason for food insecurity to exist. The Roadmap gives us the template for how we can better leverage public and partnerships and work together to create a food system that works for everyone.”

    The Virginia Roadmap to End Hunger emphasizes the importance of federal, state, and local policies and programs being in authentic partnerships with grassroots organizations, which are driven by the lived experiences of food insecure families. The Roadmap highlights the Richmond Food Justice Alliance and Cultivate Charlottesville as two examples of advocacy groups organizing at the local level to improve food access for their communities.

    Learn more about the Virginia Roadmap to End Hunger here.

    Video of today’s announcement is available here.

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  • Governor Northam Authorizes Hazard Pay for Home Health Workers - Thursday, October 15, 2020
  • Governor Northam Authorizes Hazard Pay for Home Health Workers

    October 15, 2020

    Federal funding will cover one-time payment for work at height of COVID-19 pandemic

    Governor Ralph Northam today announced $73 million in federal Coronavirus Aid, Recovery, and Economic Security (CARES) Act funding to provide hazard pay to home health personal care attendants who served high-risk populations during the early months of the COVID-19 pandemic.

    A one-time, pre-tax payment of $1,500 will be available to an estimated 43,500 home health care workers who provide personal care and who served Medicaid members between March 12 and June 30, 2020.

    “Home health care workers are often unseen, unsung, and underpaid, but they do the vital work of caring for vulnerable Virginians,” said Governor Northam. “Their jobs put them at higher risk during this pandemic, and this hazard payment is a way we can acknowledge that they put themselves in harm’s way to help others. I want to thank our home health care workers for the work they do every day to keep people healthy.”

    Home health care workers provide services that are critical in enabling older Virginians or people with disabilities to continue living in their own homes. In addition to the hazard payments, the state budget that went into effect July 1 included a seven percent pay raise over two years for home health workers, and the Department of Medical Assistance Services (DMAS) is working to provide those workers with personal protective equipment, including masks, gloves, and hand sanitizer.

    “The majority of home health care workers are women, and women of color, providing critical health services for low pay,” said Senator Louise Lucas, Chairwoman of the Senate Education and Health Committee. “This hazard payment acknowledges the essential work that they do and the risks they took especially in the early months of the pandemic, when less was known about this virus. It is one way we can show appreciation to the people who do such important work.”

    “Home health care workers are unsung heroes even in the best of times, and the pandemic has put them at higher risk and under greater stress,” said Delegate Mark Sickles, Chairman of the House Health, Welfare, and Institutions Committee. “This hazard payment is a way to show these workers that we value them and the essential work that they do.”

    “Home health care workers have been on the front lines of the pandemic, working every day to keep our community safe,” said David Broder, President of Service Employees International Union Virginia 512, which represents personal care attendants. “Home care workers, primarily Black and brown women, are instrumental in helping older adults and people with disabilities lead healthy and active lives, safe at home, and in the community. That was especially important earlier this year when nursing homes faced outbreaks. This hazard pay recognizes their essential work. It’s an important investment that will support families and keep overall costs down for our healthcare system.”

    DMAS, which oversees Virginia’s Medicaid program, will work with providers over the coming weeks to administer the payments to eligible workers.

    # # #

  • City Moving Meetings to Convention Center Effective October 13, 2020 - Thursday, October 8, 2020
  • City Moving Meetings to Convention Center Effective October 13, 2020

    October 8, 2020

    Suite 5 of the Virginia Beach Convention Center will be the new location for meetings of the City Council and Planning Commission for the foreseeable future. The move, effective Tuesday, October 13, follows recommendations from the City's Occupational Safety and Health Office and the Virginia Beach Department of Health. Planning and Community Development is evaluating options for its various Board meetings.

    The reasons for this move are threefold:

    • Despite best efforts to reconfigure the space, the narrow aisles and other layout restrictions prevent us from consistently achieving the recommended physical distancing.
    • Under current conditions, the HVAC system does not meet the expectations set forth by the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) or the American Society of Heating, Refrigerating and Air-Conditioning Engineers (ASHRAE) for air movement, cleaning and re-circulation. Specifically, we have too many people in a small, enclosed space for extended periods of time.
    • The number of people we can safely accommodate in the space is severely limited.

    "Most of the meetings we have had over the last two months have been at the convention center, so while we will be in a different room, this solution allows us to exercise greater precautions than we are able to attain in the meeting chamber in City Hall," said City Manager Patrick Duhaney. "We will continue to encourage everyone to follow COVID-19 best practices, including not attending in person unless absolutely necessary. The meetings are live streamed to VBTV, VBGov.com and Facebook, which makes it convenient for people who want to stay informed without taking unnecessary risks."

    Suite 5 satisfies the concerns identified with the City Hall meeting chamber and offers several advantages. Among them:

    • It is large enough to accommodate 40 audience members and, on the rare occasions when we have more people who attend in person, there are spacious waiting areas nearby.
    • There is an adjacent room for food and breaks.
    • It is located at the west end of the convention center, away from the large meeting spaces that are typically rented (when we are able to resume these types of events).
    • Parking is convenient, restrooms are nearby and there are escalators and an elevator adjacent to this suite. ​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​
  • Governor Northam Directs More Than $220 Million in CARES Act Funding to Virginia’s K-12 Schools - Thursday, October 8, 2020
  • Governor Northam Directs More Than $220 Million in CARES Act Funding to Virginia’s K-12 Schools

    October 8, 2020

    All 132 school districts to receive at least $100,000 for COVID-19 preparedness and response

    Governor Ralph Northam today announced a new allocation of more than $220 million in federal Coronavirus Aid, Recovery, and Economic Security (CARES) Act dollars to help K-12 public schools in Virginia. The funding will support COVID-19 preparedness and response measures for the 2020–2021 school year, including testing supplies, personal protective equipment, sanitization, and technology for distance learning. Funding will be distributed to all 132 public school districts using an allocation formula of $175 per pupil based on fall enrollment, with a minimum of $100,000 for each school division.

    “Students, teachers, principals, and parents are going to great lengths to navigate the COVID-19 pandemic amid a new school year, and we must do everything we can to support them,” said Governor Northam. “This additional $220 million in federal funding will give our schools the resources they need to continue operating and provide Virginians with a world-class education, whether safely in person or remotely from home.”

    This funding will supplement $66.8 million provided to Virginia through the federal Governor’s Emergency Education Relief (GEER) Fund and an additional $587.5 million allocated to the Commonwealth in May under the CARES Act. This included $238.6 million from the Elementary and Secondary School Education Relief (ESSER) Fund for K-12 activities. Additionally, the CARES Act provided $343.9 million for higher education through the Higher Education Emergency Relief Fund.

    “This funding is critical as we continue to provide safe, high-quality education for Virginia students,” said Virginia Superintendent of Public Instruction Dr. James Lane. “I am grateful to Governor Northam for his ongoing support of public education—and I can assure you that his funding will immediately be put to good use.”

    Governor Northam was one of the first governors in the country to close schools for in-person instruction when COVID-19 began to spread quickly during the 2020 spring semester. Virginia school divisions have been working overtime to adapt during the fall semester, and many continue to face challenges associated with maintaining public health protocols and increased technology needs. In June, the Commonwealth provided guidance for the phased reopening of PreK-12 schools, including guidelines for safely resuming in-person instruction and school activities.

    “We applaud Governor Northam’s commitment of more than $220 million in federal CARES Act funding to our public schools,” said Dr. James Fedderman, President of the Virginia Education Association. “COVID-19 has brought huge new challenges for our students and educators, and members of the Virginia Education Association have made clear throughout the pandemic that additional, necessary services require additional funding. This action will help keep our students safe, healthy, and learning.”

    “Virginia’s teachers are heroes, and they are doing an incredible job in the midst of this pandemic,” said Secretary of Education Atif Qarni. “This funding will help ensure the safety of students, families, and teaching staff, all while providing critical support for our most at-risk students.”

    “School divisions, teachers, and families are working overtime for the safety and wellbeing of Virginia’s students,” said Senator L. Louise Lucas. “Whether this funding is used for personal protective equipment, testing, or technology for distance learning, it will help keep our children safe and ensure no student is left behind.”

    “This pandemic has disproportionately impacted vulnerable Virginians, including our most at-risk students,” said Delegate Roslyn Tyler. “I am grateful to Governor Northam for this additional support, which will increase access to education for all families—including those who need it most.”

    More information on the amount of funding allocated to each school division can be found here.

    # # #

  • Governor Northam Announces Additional Funding for Rent and Mortgage Relief - Thursday, October 8, 2020
  • Governor Northam Announces Additional Funding for Rent and Mortgage Relief

    October 7, 2020

    Governor Ralph Northam today announced he is directing $12 million in additional funding from the federal Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act to Virginia’s Rent and Mortgage Relief Program (RMRP), due to high demand for financial assistance. The program assists households and landlords with rent and mortgage payments to avoid eviction or foreclosure due to COVID-19.

    The additional funding will enable the Department of Housing and Community Development to continue the program until it is able to transition to a Community Development Block Grant funding stream, also provided through the CARES Act. This action is a financially prudent way to maximize the value of different federal funding sources and deliver the most benefit to households across the Commonwealth.

    “We created this program because people need help to stay in their homes, especially when they are dealing with job and income losses because of this public health crisis and through no fault of their own,” said Governor Northam. “We have seen high demand for the financial assistance provided through this program, which proves how much it needs to continue. A global pandemic is the worst time for Virginia families to face losing their homes, and we know that safe and stable housing is critical to helping people stay healthy as we continue to combat this virus.”

    The RMRP was first launched in June with $50 million in federal CARES Act dollars to help renters and homeowners whose income has been affected by the COVID-19 pandemic stay in their homes. Last month, the program also began allowing landlords to apply for payments on behalf of tenants. Families with children in the home represent the majority of households assisted by the program.

    The tenant-based application process is delivered in every locality of the Commonwealth by more than 30 grantees, and the landlord-initiated application process is administered statewide by Virginia Housing. The original $50 million has been fully obligated to the tenant and landlord administrators who are processing the increasing number of applications being received from both tenants and landlords.

    “Virginia families are struggling,” said Senator Ghazala Hashmi. “We can help keep families stable by helping them make rent and mortgage payments to stay in their homes and ensuring that landlords get payments they need.”

    “While we are working to end the evictions crisis, we are also doing everything possible to ensure that the fallout from the pandemic does not exacerbate an already difficult situation,” said Delegate Marcia Price. “This additional funding is important so that there are no gaps in assistance for Virginia families.”

    Current state and federal eviction protections through the courts do not prevent rent and mortgage payments from accumulating. The Commonwealth is focused on helping eligible households and property owners access resources to maintain housing stability during the COVID-19 pandemic and in the future. Virginians are encouraged to act quickly and work with their landlord or lending institution to understand their rights and responsibilities and seek rent and mortgage relief assistance if needed.

    To submit a landlord-initiated application, visit virginiahousing.com/RMRP. Tenants interested in applying should visit dhcd.virginia.gov/eligibility to conduct a self-assessment for eligibility or call 211 VIRGINIA by dialing 2-1-1 from your phone. Additional information and resources are available at StayHomeVirginia.com.

    # # #

  • Governor Northam Allocates $30 Million in CARES Act Funding to Fast-Track Broadband Projects - Wednesday, October 7, 2020
  • Governor Northam Allocates $30 Million in CARES Act Funding to Fast-Track Broadband Projects

    October 7, 2020

    Localities can apply for funding to support expansion of high-speed, broadband internet

    Governor Ralph Northam today announced that Virginia is allocating $30 million in funding from the federal Coronavirus Aid, Recovery, and Economic Security (CARES) Act to improve broadband access in underserved localities.

    Localities must apply for the funding, and eligible projects are those able to be completed within the time constraints on spending federal dollars, which means more Virginians could get connected to high-speed, broadband internet by the end of the year.

    “Broadband is to today’s economy like electricity was generations ago—when you have it, you can get ahead,” said Governor Northam. “High-speed internet is essential for students to connect to education, business to connect to the wider world, and citizens to connect to work. The COVID-19 pandemic has made this even more clear, as so much of our lives have moved to virtual platforms. Since day one of our administration, we have made it a priority to increase access to broadband, and I am pleased that we can help more Virginians make those connections now, when they are needed most.”

    The State Council of Higher Education in Virginia estimates that 200,000 K-12 students and 60,000 college students in Virginia lack access to broadband at home. Universal broadband access has been a priority for the Northam administration, which has worked to support broadband infrastructure projects capable of connecting more than 108,000 homes and businesses. Governor Northam’s current budget proposals include $85 million in investments for broadband infrastructure.

    “Any part of Virginia without broadband risks being left behind in our increasingly digital world,” said Senator Jennifer Boysko, Chairwoman of the Broadband Advisory Council. “This initiative will speed up the work of connecting every corner of Virginia, so that everyone has access to opportunity.”

    “Broadband access is a matter of equity, as the pandemic and the rise in virtual meetings and classes demonstrate,” said Delegate Roslyn Tyler, Vice Chairwoman of the Broadband Advisory Council. “Getting broadband access to rural and urban Virginia helps to ensure that everyone in Virginia moving forward together, and I applaud the Governor for devoting CARES Act funding to this critical priority.”

    The CARES Act funding allocated to this initiative is separate from other broadband funding streams. Localities are encouraged to creatively address the digital divide, including projects that address infrastructure or the cost of broadband services.

    The follow are examples of eligible projects. Projects not listed below, but related to broadband and telecommunications expansion will also be considered.

    • Broadband infrastructure capable of delivering a minimum of 25Mbps/3Mbps to Virginians currently unserved, with limited overbuilding of existing infrastructure.
    • Broadband service connection costs for passings or property with high cost for individual connections, no greater than $10,000 per connection. Examples of such connections are for passings with long driveways, on a private road, or that have costs associated with a rail or highway crossing.
    • Cellular transmission equipment for parts of the Commonwealth without cell service.

    The program will launch Friday, October 9, and only localities are eligible to apply for funding. Additional information will be provided to local chief administrative officers. Detailed program and application information will be made available at commonwealthconnect.virginia.gov.

    # # #

  • Governor Northam Announces Expansion of Innovative Workforce Program to Help Get Virginians Back to Work - Wednesday, October 7, 2020
  • Governor Northam Announces Expansion of Innovative Workforce Program to Help Get Virginians Back to Work

    October 6, 2020

    Virginia to invest $1.7 million to scale up Network2Work initiative connecting job seekers to high-quality careers, wraparound supports

    Governor Ralph Northam today announced that Virginia will invest $1.7 million over the next two years to expand the innovative Network2Work program, a unique workforce development initiative established by Piedmont Virginia Community College (PVCC) that connects job seekers with local job networks and support services. The Commonwealth will work in partnership with the Virginia Community College System to scale up the Network2Work model in the Shenandoah Valley, Hampton Roads, and Greater Richmond regions.

    “People across our Commonwealth are facing unprecedented and far-reaching impacts of the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, and challenging times like these call for innovative solutions,” said Governor Northam. “Network2Work uses a proactive approach to workforce development, leveraging community-based networks to connect job seekers with the skills and resources they need to find employment despite barriers that might include lack of childcare, transportation, or other necessities. With the expansion of this program, we will get more Virginians back to work, help employers secure the talent they need to thrive, and put our economy in a strong position to rebound from this crisis.”

    The program works with employers to post jobs with family-sustaining wages through an app-based database. Network2Work then reaches out to community-based connectors, who are well-respected individuals at the center of social networks in their neighborhoods, local organizations, schools, places of worship, and immigrant communities. Connectors help identify and refer job seekers who are a good match for the available opportunities. The program’s staff then help the job seeker chart a pathway to securing the job by tapping into work skills, life management, or health resources and additional wraparound supports through a network of nonprofit organizations and local human services agencies. This innovative, community-based framework helps families become self-sufficient by identifying employment opportunities in their reach and positioning them to secure and excel in those jobs.

    “Our framework is built on a simple premise: a community thrives when its residents thrive,” said Ridge Schuyler, who first developed the Network2Work model and will lead efforts to expand the program in the three pilot areas. “With this exciting expansion, we will be able to help more Virginians realize their full potential by providing them with the connections and support services they need to be successful in the workforce and in their communities.”

    To date, 85 percent of Network2Work job seekers have found jobs, and 59 percent of those jobs pay more than $25,000 annually. About 40 percent of the program’s participants are single mothers. More than 70,000 families that live within the three pilot sites are the focus of Network2Work’s expansion, including families whose employment has been impacted by the COVID-19 crisis.

    “The new Network2Work pilot program will help ensure that every Virginian is able to access high-quality employment as we recover from the COVID-19 crisis,” said Chief Workforce Development Advisor Megan Healy. “By tapping into local networks of employers, service providers, and community-based connectors, the program will demonstrate its ability to meet job seekers where they are.”

    “The Network2Work framework is the most innovative approach to connecting job seekers with high-quality jobs that I have seen in my 42 years of community college work,” said PVCC President Dr. Frank Friedman. “I have been proud to witness the program’s growing impact, which served 19 job seekers in its first year and has now reached more than 900. Our employer network has grown from four to over 90 employers, offering a total of over $9 million in income to our program participants. We look forward to building on this strong foundation and sharing what we have learned with others to help improve the well-being of families across the Commonwealth.”

    Network2Work was first developed through a partnership between the PVCC and the Charlottesville Regional Chamber of Commerce to make sure all residents in the region had support to get a job. In 2016, the program was the recipient of the Charlottesville Area Community Foundation’s inaugural Strengthening Systems Grant. To learn more about Network2Work, visit pvcc.edu/network2work.

    # # #

  • COVID-19 Real Estate and Personal Property Tax Relief Program Application Deadline Extended to Oct. 31 - Thursday, October 1, 2020
  • COVID-19 Real Estate and Personal Property Tax Relief Program Application Deadline Extended to Oct. 31

    October 1, 2020

    Due to steady interest and ongoing community need, the Department of Human Services will continue to accept applications for the COVID-19 Real Estate and Personal Property Tax Relief Program through Oct. 31. The program provides direct relief for households where an occupant has lost their employment, had their work hours reduced or has been furloughed due to COVID-19. Financial relief comes in the form of a check for the approved relief amount to the named recipient.

    "As the ongoing economic impacts of the pandemic are felt in our community, we recognize that there are many families and individuals who may be in a different employment situation now than at the beginning of the pandemic," said DHS Financial Assistance Division Administrator Deidria Bolden. "Anyone who has experienced a job loss or reduction of hours for any length of time since March 1 of this year due to COVID-19 is encouraged to apply."

    A maximum relief of $500 for residential real estate taxes and $250 for personal property tax has been established for eligible households. The amount of relief will be the billed total, or the benefit maximum, whichever is lower. Each household could potentially receive both benefits for a maximum relief amount of $750. Only one application may be filed per household. Any impacted household, whether they have paid their tax bill or not, is encouraged to apply if they meet the eligibility requirements. Self-employed individuals or gig workers may be eligible if they are able to provide sufficient documentation of loss of work.

    To be eligible for consideration, potential beneficiaries must:

    • Provide proof of eligibility criteria
    • Have established Virginia Beach residency as of March 1, 2020
    • Be unemployed, furloughed, or reduced in hours at any time after March 1, 2020 due to the COVID-19 pandemic
    • Provide a copy of their 2020 real estate and/or personal property tax bills

    Potential beneficiaries may only claim their primary residence for relief – no rental or second properties are eligible. Applications will be processed as they are received. Please note that any accrued late fees, penalties or interest are the responsibility of the bill holder and are not eligible for relief.

    Additional information, including necessary documents for proof of eligibility and applications, can be found online at VBgov.com/COVID19TaxRelief. For questions about eligibility or accepted documentation, please email VBTaxRelief@vbgov.com.

    For the latest information, please visit emergency.vbgov.com/coronavirus and follow us on facebook.com/CityofVaBeach, twitter.com/CityofVaBeach and instagram.com/cityofvabeach.

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  • Virginia Launches New Open Data Portal to Enhance COVID-19 Response and Recovery - Thursday, October 1, 2020
  • Virginia Launches New Open Data Portal to Enhance COVID-19 Response and Recovery

    October 1, 2020

    Virtual Virginia Datathon will use state portal to develop applications that address impacts of health crisis.

    Governor Ralph Northam today announced that the Virginia Open Data Portal now includes more than a dozen new COVID-19 datasets from the Virginia Department of Health. The launch of the new Virginia Open Data Portal, which is a collaboration between the Office of the Chief Data Officer and the Library of Virginia, was accelerated amid the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic to provide greater access to the data informing public health officials and allow Virginians to interact with it.

    “Every day this public health crisis reminds us why data is one of the most valuable resources in state government,” said Governor Northam. “Our goal is to harness data to promote efficiency, increase transparency, and develop innovative solutions to the challenges we face. This expansion of the Virginia Open Data Portal will make the data driving our decisions available to all Virginians and empower people across the Commonwealth to engage in our ongoing COVID-19 response and recovery efforts.”

    The Virginia Open Data Portal was launched in 2014 by Governor Terry McAuliffe to provide centralized access to data across state agencies and create a platform where Virginians can interpret, analyze, and transform the data into actionable intelligence. Within the portal, users can view stories and dashboards, create visualizations, filter data, and access it through application programming interfaces (APIs) to build solutions in web and mobile applications. A list of COVID-19 datasets can be found on the Virginia Open Data Portal.

    “Secure and appropriate data sharing is fundamental to the success of our society because information supports engagement,” said Chief Data Officer Carlos Rivero. “The Commonwealth’s data is a strategic asset that when leveraged, can drive innovation, increase quality of life, and stimulate economic growth.”

    The 2020 Virtual Virginia Datathon, which kicks off today, October 1, will bring together state agencies, students, localities, non-profits, and private sector businesses to leverage this data to develop innovative solutions that seek to address challenges created by the pandemic. The Datathon will be livestreamed on the Library of Virginia’s YouTube page beginning at 8:30 a.m. on October 1. Team presentations are scheduled for 2:00 p.m. on October 2.

    The annual Virginia Datathon, which is being held virtually this year, is a two-day statewide competition where teams of innovators use state data and other open data sources to create applications with the support of subject matter experts from the community. In previous years, Datathon participants have tackled issues from workforce innovation, to equity in education, to the opioid and addiction crisis.

    “The pandemic delivered unique and unprecedented challenges for many, and it’s important that we respond to this crisis and move toward recovery in ways that are equitable for each community,” said Sandra Treadway, Librarian of Virginia. “The far-reaching theme of this year’s Datathon will invite participants to explore the multi-faceted challenges brought on by COVID-19 and develop solutions that can mitigate the impacts of this crisis and ultimately aid Virginia’s recovery.”

    In June, Governor Northam announced the expansion of the Framework for Addiction Analysis and Community Transformation (FAACT), Virginia’s cross-agency, cloud-based, data-sharing and analytics platform to help the Commonwealth mitigate the spread of COVID-19 and maintain an adequate supply of resources.

    The Commonwealth is committed to growing the number of open datasets available through the portal. Learn more about the Virginia Open Data Portal and access the Commonwealth’s datasets at data.virginia.gov.

    # # #

  • Virginia Beach Health Department Hosting Free COVID-19 Community Testing - Friday, September 25, 2020
  • Virginia Beach Health Department Hosting Free COVID-19 Community Testing

    September 24, 2020

    The Virginia Beach Department of Public Health (VBDPH) will be hosting a FREE COVID-19 community-based testing event on Wednesday, Sept. 30, 2020, from 10 a.m. to noon at Green Run Homes Association Clubhouse, 1248 Green Garden Circle, Virginia Beach. For this event, Virginia Beach Department of Public Health staff and Virginia Beach Medical Reserve Corps (MRC) volunteers will administer the PCR testing for adults and children ages 13 years and older. Participants in this free walk-up testing event must wear a face covering.

    The Virginia Beach Department of Public Health is offering walk-up registration and testing, while supplies last. VBDPH will be providing testing only during the event and not medical care or treatment. For those with medical emergencies or severe COVID-19 symptoms, seek immediate medical attention and do not wait for this event.

    To lower the risk of respiratory germ spread, including COVID-19, the Virginia Department of Health continues to encourage the following effective behaviors:

    • Cover your mouth and nose with a cloth face cover when around others.
    • Elderly and those at-risk should stay at home as much as possible. If not possible, avoid large gatherings.
    • Practice social distancing of 6 feet or more.
    • Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds. Use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer only if soap and water are not available.
    • Avoid touching your eyes, nose and mouth.
    • Cover your mouth and nose with a tissue or your sleeve (not your hands) when coughing or sneezing.
    • Clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces.
    • Stay home when you are sick.
    • Avoid contact with sick people.
    • Limit travel as much as possible.

    This is a rapidly changing situation, and information is being shared as it becomes available on the following websites: www.cdc.gov/covid19 or www.vdh.virginia.gov/coronavirus/.

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  • Governor Northam Announces Expansion of Rent and Mortgage Relief Program for Landlords - Friday, September 25, 2020
  • Governor Northam Announces Expansion of Rent and Mortgage Relief Program for Landlords

    September 24, 2020

    Landlords can now apply to receive rental assistance on behalf of tenants

    Governor Ralph Northam today announced the expansion of the Rent and Mortgage Relief Program (RMRP), which first launched at the end of June with $50 million in federal Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act funding to assist households facing eviction or foreclosure due to COVID-19. Landlords can now apply to receive financial assistance for current and past-due rental payments dating back to April 1, 2020 on behalf of their tenants who qualify for RMRP. This new application is available in addition to the existing tenant-based application.

    Current state and federal eviction protections through the courts do not prevent rent and mortgage payments from accumulating. The Commonwealth is focused on helping eligible households and property owners access resources to maintain housing stability during the COVID-19 pandemic and in the future. Virginians are encouraged to act quickly and work with their landlord or lending institution to understand their rights and responsibilities and seek rent and mortgage relief assistance if needed.

    “Housing is key to ensuring the health, safety, and well-being of all Virginians,” said Governor Northam. “We continue to look for innovative ways to reach as many households and property owners as possible throughout this pandemic and our economic recovery. Expanding this program will provide much needed relief for landlords and property owners facing financial hardship and help ensure that more Virginia families can remain safely in their homes.”

    The Department of Housing and Community Development (DHCD) administers the RMRP program through approximately 30 local and regional housing-related agencies throughout the Commonwealth. Virginia Housing, the state’s housing finance agency, has partnered with DHCD to manage landlord-initiated applications.

    Eligible households must demonstrate difficulty in making rent or mortgage payments due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Monthly rent must be at or below 150 percent of Fair Market Rent (FMR) and eligible households must have a gross household income at or below 80 percent of area median income (AMI).

    “The top goal of RMRP is to keep families in safe and affordable housing by utilizing the funding resources to make tenants and homeowners, as well as landlords and mortgage companies, whole on outstanding payments,” said Secretary of Commerce and Trade Brian Ball. “A strong partnership between landlords and tenants is imperative to keeping Virginians who owe back rent stably housed through this pandemic and beyond.”

    More than 60 percent of the households served between August 27 and September 9 included children under 8 years old, and 58 percent included children ages 9-17. Of those who identified race, Black households accounted for more than 45 percent of those served, and white households accounted for 30 percent.

    The RMRP provides financial assistance in the form of a one-time payment with the opportunity for renewal based on availability of funding, the household’s need for additional assistance, and continued eligibility. This includes financial assistance for rent or mortgage payments past due from April 1, 2020 and onward.

    A federal moratorium on evictions from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) is currently in place through December 31, 2020 and suspends eviction proceedings for households facing eviction due to unpaid rent. The moratorium requires tenants to sign a declaration of eligibility and deliver the document to their landlord, but does not prevent rent payments from accumulating. Additional information is available at StayHomeVirginia.com/renters.

    To submit a landlord-initiated application, visit virginiahousing.com/RMRP. Tenants interested in applying should visit dhcd.virginia.gov/eligibility to conduct a self-assessment for eligibility or call 211 VIRGINIA by dialing 2-1-1 from your phone. Tenants and homeowners are strongly encouraged to know their rights and responsibilities and pay their rent and mortgages on time if they are able and if they are not able, to reach out to their landlord or lending institution along with RMRP. Visit StayHomeVirginia.com for additional information and resources.

    # # #

  • Governor Northam Announces Expansion of $70 Million Rebuild VA Grant Fund for Small Businesses, Nonprofits Impacted by COVID-19 - Monday, September 21, 2020
  • Governor Northam Announces Expansion of $70 Million Rebuild VA Grant Fund for Small Businesses, Nonprofits Impacted by COVID-19

    September 21, 2020

    Eligibility criteria expanded to include businesses that received federal CARES Act funds, supply chain partners affected by closures

    Governor Ralph Northam today announced that Rebuild VA, the $70 million economic recovery fund launched in August, is expanding its eligibility criteria to allow more small businesses to apply. Businesses that received funding from the federal Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act and supply chain partners of businesses whose normal operations were impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic are now eligible to receive grants of up to $10,000. Businesses that have received federal funds must certify that they will only use the Rebuild VA grant for recurring expenses and that the grant will not be used to cover the same expenses as the other CARES Act funds.

    Rebuild VA, which is administered by the Department of Small Business and Supplier Diversity (SBSD), successfully launched on August 10. SBSD and its program partners, the Department of Housing and Community Development, the Virginia Tourism Corporation, and the Virginia Economic Development Partnership, made the decision to expand eligibility criteria after analysis of eligible and ineligible applications received within the first 30 days of the launch.

    “When we initially launched Rebuild VA, we focused on reaching the small businesses and nonprofit organizations most in need,” said Governor Northam. “I am deeply grateful for the work of our state agencies to swiftly adjust the parameters of this program so we can assist more Virginia businesses as they weather this health crisis and build back stronger.”

    Eligible businesses and nonprofits must demonstrate that their normal operations were limited by Governor Northam’s Executive Orders Fifty-Three or Fifty-Five, or that they were directly impacted by the closure of such businesses. In March, Governor Northam took executive action to protect the health and safety of Virginians, which included limiting operations for food and beverage, non-essential brick and mortar retail, exercise and fitness, entertainment and public amusement, personal care and personal grooming, and private campground and overnight summer camps. Expanded business sectors now eligible to apply for Rebuild VA grants include small hotels and bed and breakfasts lodging facilities along with film companies supporting production in the Commonwealth. Businesses that provide goods or services for those identified in one or more of the eligible business categories previously mentioned are now eligible.

    Businesses must also certify that they have not received grant or loan dollars from federal, state, or local CARES Act funded programs, or if they have received CARES Act funding, that they will use the Rebuild VA grant only for recurring expenses. These businesses must also certify that the Rebuild VA funds will not be used to cover the same expenses as other CARES Act funds.

    Rebuild VA still requires that businesses and nonprofit organizations must be in good standing, have annual gross revenues of no more than $1.5 million, and have no more than 25 employees.

    Rebuild VA funding may be utilized for the following eligible expenses:

    • Payroll support, including paid sick, medical, or family leave, and costs related to the continuation of group health care benefits during those periods of leave;
    • Employee salaries;
    • Mortgage payments, rent, and utilities;
    • Principal and interest payments for any business loans from national or state-chartered banking, savings and loan institutions, or credit unions, that were incurred before or during the emergency;
    • Eligible personal protective equipment, cleaning and disinfecting materials, or other working capital needed to address COVID-19 response.

    For additional information about Rebuild VA, expanded eligibility criteria, covered expenses, and how to submit an application, please visit governor.virginia.gov/RebuildVA.

    # # #

  • Great Neck, Oceanfront and Windsor Woods Libraries to Open for Limited Services on Sept. 17; Pungo-Blackwater Branch to Close for Renovations - Tuesday, September 15, 2020
  • Great Neck, Oceanfront and Windsor Woods Libraries to Open for Limited Services on Sept. 17; Pungo-Blackwater Branch to Close for Renovations

    September 15, 2020

    Beginning Thursday, Sept. 17, Virginia Beach Public Library (VBPL) will reopen an additional three of its 10 branches that have been closed to the public since March due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Residents will be able to visit the Great Neck, Oceanfront and Windsor Woods libraries for limited services including browsing and checking out materials, computer, printer and internet access, applying for library cards and registering to vote.

    VBPL is implementing the same safety precautions in the three branches as are in practice now at Central, Kempsville, Princess Anne and Wahab Public Law Library branches, which reopened on July 20:

    • A limited number of customers may be admitted at a time, based on building size.
    • Customers are asked to keep visits to one hour to maximize access for all residents.
    • Staff and customers must wear masks inside libraries.
    • Signs and decals will reiterate social distancing, hand washing and one-way travel.
    • Some spaces and furnishings may be unavailable, including the children's room at Windsor Woods Area Library. (Children's rooms also remain closed at Kempsville and Princess Anne.)
    • Increased cleaning and sanitizing.

    The TCC/City Joint-Use Library will remain closed until further notice, with holds pickup service available on site.

    Pungo-Blackwater Branch Closing for Renovations
    VBPL's Pungo-Blackwater branch will close temporarily for renovations on Sept. 17. Upgrades include new furniture, a more customer-friendly front desk and more. Customers who have holds to pick up on or after Sept. 17 will find their items at Princess Anne Area Library. The $104,000 renovation project is part of a $5.8 million Capital Improvement Program (CIP) to renovate eight of 10 VBPL locations. For more information, visit www.VBgov.com/libraries.

    About Virginia Beach Public Library
    Virginia Beach Public Library includes a central library, a joint-use library in partnership with Tidewater Community College, seven area libraries and a public law library. Services include workforce development and job-search support, small business resources, computer and technology classes, early literacy classes and outreach, and local history archives and programs. In addition to books, music, magazines and movies in tangible and digital formats, the library provides online research tools accessible from home or work, and a variety of specialty collections. Visit www.VBgov.com/libraries for more information.

    # # #

  • Virginia Beach Health Department Announces Another COVID-19 Community Testing Event - Monday, September 14, 2020
  • Virginia Beach Health Department Announces Another COVID-19 Community Testing Event

    September 14, 2020

    The Virginia Beach Department of Public Health (VBDPH) will be having another free COVID-19 community-based testing event on Saturday, Sept. 19, 2020, from 10 a.m. to noon at the Cornerstone City of Refuge Ministries Church, 528 S. Military Highway, Virginia Beach. For this event, VBDPH staff and Virginia Beach Medical Reserve Corps (MRC) volunteers will administer the PCR testing for adults and children ages 13 years and older. Participants in this free walk-up testing event must wear a face covering.

    The Virginia Beach Department of Public Health is offering walk-up registration and testing while supplies last. VBDPH will be providing testing only during the event and not medical care or treatment. For those with medical emergencies or severe COVID-19 symptoms, seek immediate medical attention and do not wait for this event.

    As a part of Virginia's Health Equity Pilot Program, Virginia Beach Community Emergency Response Team (CERT) volunteers will be distributing free masks and hand sanitizer at the event. Anyone who needs these items will not be required to get tested in order to receive them.

    To lower the risk of respiratory germ spread, including COVID-19, the Virginia Department of Health continues to encourage the following effective behaviors:

    • Cover your mouth and nose with a cloth face cover when around others.
    • Elderly and those at-risk should stay at home as much as possible. If not possible, avoid large gatherings.
    • Practice social distancing of 6 feet or more.
    • Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds. Use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer only if soap and water are not available.
    • Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth.
    • Cover your mouth and nose with a tissue or your sleeve (not your hands) when coughing or sneezing.
    • Clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces.
    • Stay home when you are sick.
    • Avoid contact with sick people.
    • Limit travel as much as possible.

    This is a rapidly changing situation, and information is being shared as it becomes available on the following websites: www.cdc.gov/covid19 or www.vdh.virginia.gov/coronavirus/.

    # # # ​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​

  • Governor Northam Announces Easing of Restrictions in Hampton Roads - Thursday, September 10, 2020
  • Governor Northam Announces Easing of Restrictions in Hampton Roads

    September 10, 2020

    Governor Ralph Northam today announced that, due to significantly improved health metrics in the Eastern Region, localities in Hampton Roads will join the rest of the Commonwealth in Phase Three of the “Forward Virginia” plan to ease public health restrictions while mitigating the spread of COVID-19.

    “Hampton Roads residents, businesses, and health officials have worked together to reduce the spread of COVID-19,” said Governor Northam. “New cases have dropped by more than half, hospitalizations have declined, and percent positivity has fallen below the statewide average. But we cannot let our guard down—we all must continue practicing social distancing, wearing facial coverings, and following all public health guidelines. If we want to keep moving forward, we must stay vigilant and do the things that we know will keep our communities safe.”

    The region’s targeted COVID-19 restrictions went into effect nearly six weeks ago on July 31 and included a ban on gatherings of more than 50 people, a reduction in indoor dining to 50 percent capacity, and a requirement that restaurants close at midnight and stop the sale of alcohol after 10:00 p.m. The impacted localities include cities of Virginia Beach, Chesapeake, Norfolk, Suffolk, Portsmouth, Hampton, Williamsburg, Newport News, Poquoson, James City County and York County.

    As of September 9, the percent positivity rate for polymerase chain reaction (PCR) tests in the Eastern Region is 6.7 percent and has been decreasing for 12 days. The number of new COVID-19 cases in the Eastern Region has been decreasing for 46 days. Hospitalizations, including COVID-19 intensive care unit hospitalizations, have been declining for approximately three weeks, and the current rate of emergency room admissions is steadily decreasing.

    The full text of amended Executive Order Sixty-Seven and Order of Public Health Emergency Seven is available here.

    # # #

  • Virginia Beach Health Department Hosting Another COVID-19 Community Testing Event - Tuesday, September 8, 2020
  • Virginia Beach Health Department Hosting Another COVID-19 Community Testing Event

    September 8, 2020

    The Virginia Beach Department of Public Health (VBDPH) will be holding another FREE COVID-19 community-based testing event on Friday, Sept. 11, 2020, from 10 a.m. to noon at the Eastminster Presbyterian Church, 3229 MacDonald Road, Virginia Beach. For this event, Virginia Beach Department of Public Health staff and Virginia Beach Medical Reserve Corps (MRC) volunteers will administer the PCR testing for adults and children ages 13 years and older. Participants in this free walk-up testing event must wear a face covering.

    The Virginia Beach Department of Public Health is offering walk-up registration and testing, while supplies last. VBDPH will be providing testing only during the event and not medical care or treatment. For those with medical emergencies or severe COVID-19 symptoms, seek immediate medical attention and do not wait for this event.

    As a part of Virginia's Health Equity Pilot Program, Virginia Beach Community Emergency Response Team (CERT) volunteers will be distributing free masks and hand sanitizer at the event. Anyone who needs these items will not be required to get tested in order to receive them.

    To lower the risk of respiratory germ spread, including COVID-19, the Virginia Department of Health continues to encourage the following effective behaviors:

    • Cover your mouth and nose with a cloth face cover when around others.
    • Elderly and those at-risk should stay at home as much as possible. If not possible, avoid large gatherings.
    • Practice social distancing of 6 feet or more.
    • Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds. Use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer only if soap and water are not available.
    • Avoid touching your eyes, nose and mouth.
    • Cover your mouth and nose with a tissue or your sleeve (not your hands) when coughing or sneezing.
    • Clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces.
    • Stay home when you are sick.
    • Avoid contact with sick people.
    • Limit travel as much as possible.

    This is a rapidly changing situation, and information is being shared as it becomes available on the following websites: www.cdc.gov/covid19 or www.vdh.virginia.gov/coronavirus/.

    # # # ​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​

    Notifications

    Reopenings

    Virginia Aquarium & Marine Science Center

    • The Virginia Aquarium & Marine Science Center, will take the first steps to welcome guests back starting June 19, 2020.
    • New safety measures have been developed to keep guests, staff, volunteers, and animals safe, while complying with all state and local regulations concerning COVID-19.
    • Online reservations are required to create a touch-free payment process. Make reservations.
    • Limiting capacity with timed tickets, both for members and general admission
    • Requiring guests 10 and older, staff, and volunteers to wear face coverings (in accordance with the Virginia Governor's Executive Order 63)
    • Creating one-way paths throughout the Aquarium
    • Providing additional hand sanitizing stations around the Aquarium
    • Increasing sanitation procedures for high-contact surfaces in the Aquarium
    • Not accepting reservations between 1 to 2 p.m. each day so staff can conduct additional thorough cleaning and sanitization
    • Complying with all state and local regulations concerning COVID-19
    • Detailed information about the new procedures, including frequently asked questions, can be found here.

    Update: July 31, 2020

    Governor Ralph Northam outlined new actions to mitigate the spread of COVID-19 in the Hampton Roads region, which has seen a recent increase in new cases, hospitalizations, and positive tests.

    COVID-19 Beach Regulations

    The regulations are posted at each beach access and enforced. They include (updated as of July 31, 2020):

    • Stay 6 ft. apart – Please maintain social distancing of at least six feet from any other person (with the exception of family members)
    • Stay 10 ft. apart from other participants when playing any recreational sports
    • Wear a face covering when appropriate distancing is not possible and when entering restaurants, shops and public buildings
    • 50 people or less in groups
    • No large coolers – 39 quarts or less
    • No alcohol
    • Beginning at midnight on Friday, July 31, restrictions will prohibit the on-site sale, consumption, and possession of alcohol after 10:00 p.m. in any restaurant, dining establishment, food court, brewery, microbrewery, distillery, winery, or tasting room.
    • All restaurants, dining establishments, food courts, breweries, microbreweries, distilleries, wineries, and tasting rooms must close by midnight.
    • Indoor dining in these establishments will be limited to 50 percent capacity.
    • Public and private in-person gatherings over 50 people will be prohibited, down from a previous cap of 250 people.

    The full text of Executive Order Sixty-Eight and Order of Public Health Emergency Eight is available here. Read the order in Spanish here.

    Commissioner of the Revenue

    • The Commissioner of the Revenue's office is now offering citizens the opportunity to schedule online appointments for most services, including DMV Select.
    • All visitation to the Commissioner's office is by appointment only.
    • With online appointment scheduling, taxpayers can book an in-house appointment for most services offered at City Hall.
    • Citizens may schedule appointments now at: vb311.force.com/appointmentscheduler.
    • Use the convenient QR code below or visit www.vbgov.com/cor to schedule an appointment.

    Reminder: Citizens are strongly encouraged citizens to conduct business online or by phone, email and fax. Face coverings are required for conducting business inside City Hall, per the Governor's Executive Order 63.

    For more information, please contact the Commissioner of the Revenue's office at (757) 385-4251 or coradmin@vbgov.com.


    City Treasurer

    • The City Treasurer’s Office is now open to the public from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Friday, with the exception of the Lynnhaven location.
    • The Lynnhaven Office opening has yet to be determined. The Lynnhaven drop box will continue to be picked up daily.
    • Face coverings are required for conducting business inside City Hall, per the Governor’s Executive Order 63.
    • For more information, contact the City Treasurer’s office at (757) 385-4445 or visit www.vbgov.com/treas.

    General District Court

    Due to the current global COVID-19 pandemic and consistent with the Virginia Supreme Court's declarations of judicial emergency, and per Va. Code Section 16.1-69 (5), effective July 20, 2020, the General District Court of the City of Virginia Beach will operate as outlined in the following order:


    Circuit Court

    During the period of judicial emergency, due to the COVID-19 emergency, the Circuit Court enters this Order to advise users of the operations of the Circuit Court beginning Oct. 1, 2020.

    Updated September 10, 2020

    Governor Ralph Northam today announced that, due to significantly improved health metrics in the Eastern Region, localities in Hampton Roads will join the rest of the Commonwealth in Phase Three of the “Forward Virginia” plan to ease public health restrictions while mitigating the spread of COVID-19.

    Accordingly, the additional restrictions placed on the Eastern Region by Executive Order 68 and Order of Public Health Emergency Eight are lifted, and Phase Three is fully re-implemented in the Eastern Region.

    In Phase Three, the Commonwealth will maintain a Safer at Home strategy with:

    • Continued recommendations for social distancing and teleworking
    • The requirement that individuals wear face coverings in indoor public settings.
    • The maximum number of individuals allowed in social gatherings will increase to 250 people.
    • All businesses should continue to follow physical distancing guidelines, frequently clean and sanitize high contact surfaces, and keep enhanced workplace safety measures in place.

    The full text of amended Executive Order Sixty-Seven and Order of Public Health Emergency Seven is available here.

    Virginia Beach Housing Resource Center - VBgov.com/housing

    • Families and individuals experiencing homelessness or in imminent danger of losing their housing should, as always, call the Regional Housing Crisis Hotline, (757) 227-5932, Monday through Friday, 8 a.m. to 7 p.m. Referrals will be conducted by phone
    • Triage and screening for homeless services remain closed to walk-ins, however the following services will reopen under modified operations and with precautions in place, including:
      • Requiring all staff, volunteers and guests 10 and older to wear face coverings (in accordance with the Virginia Governor's Executive Order 63).
      • Maintaining 6-feet social distancing, increased cleaning and sanitization (especially high-contact surfaces) and providing hand sanitizing stations throughout the building.
    • Partial Reopening of Day Services Starting July 13 - Laundry, showers, housing support, and one meal for unsheltered adults (ages 18 and older) available:
      • Monday, Tuesday, Thursday and Friday, 7 to 11:30 a.m., and 12:30 to 3 p.m.
      • Wednesday, 7 to 11:30 a.m.
      • Capacity is limited and services will be available on a first-come, first-served basis
      • Individuals may access Day Services once each day
      • Day Services will close from 11:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. for additional thorough cleaning and sanitization.
    • Health Center Now Accepting Appointments - Southeastern Virginia Health System, the health services provider at the Housing Resource Center, is accepting patients by appointment only:
      • Monday and Friday, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.
      • Tuesday and Thursday, 8 a.m. to noon
      • currently closed on Wednesday.
    • Telehealth appointments are also offered when appropriate.
    • Comprehensive primary care health services offered for adults and children include exams, immunizations, health education, nutrition counseling, medication assistance, and lab services.

    Call (757) 385-2437 for more information or to schedule an appointment.

    Department of Human Services – Reopening Monday, July 6

    • All services will be open to the public except for the Behavioral Health & Developmental Services Day Programs.
    • Visitors over the age of 10 should wear face coverings when meeting face-to-face with staff. Social distancing guidelines will be followed in all interactions.
    • Visitation at group homes, Intermediate Care Facilities and the Juvenile Detention Center remain suspended until further notice.
    • Citizens will continue to have the option to use telehealth or other electronic means to access services in most locations. If a face-to-face service is necessary, clients may request an appointment.
    • Emergency crisis services will continue to be available 24/7.
    • Building capacity at facilities will be limited to approximately 50%. Clients and family members may be asked to wait in their vehicle until the appointed time if the building capacity has been reached.
    • For more information, please visit VBgov.com/DHSReopen

    BEACH AMBASSADOR

    JOB TITLE: Beach Ambassador Education Team Member

    EMPLOYER: IMGoing

    OPENING DATE: 5/8/2020

    HOURLY RATE: $12.00 per hour

    TYPE OF EMPLOYMENT: Temporary

    Work Schedule: 9:00 a.m. to 6:30 p.m. Monday-Sunday

    LOCATION: Virginia Beach Oceanfront, Designated Beach Access points and roving

    DESCRIPTION:

    Our Ambassadors are the front-line friendly faces in the campaign to reopen the beaches of Virginia Beach and in welcoming back visitors and residents! These energetic, fun-loving, and service-minded staff members are the key to helping guests enjoy a safe and relaxing time in Virginia Beach.

    Ambassadors serve as a “welcoming committee,” and direct guests to signage informing them of guidelines designed to keep them healthy during their visit to the beach. Social distancing is the critical component to reopening our beaches. Ambassadors provide friendly reminders to guests and interact as needed to encourage safe distancing. Our leadership staff stands at the ready to provide assistance and guidance at all times.

    Educating our guests and helping them experience the beaches of Virginia Beach in a safe manner is our passion. We couldn’t do it without our outgoing and congenial Ambassadors. As we search for team members who share our love for the outdoors and for bringing our beaches back to life, we hope you will join our Ambassadors!

    This is not a security job this is a Beach Ambassador position. You will not be required to take any direct enforcement action.

    JOB REQUIREMENTS:

    • Ability to be enthusiastic, energetic and knowledgeable of the product and services
    • Ability to maintain a professional demeanor and attitude
    • Ability to stand for long periods of time
    • Work Environment: while performing the duties of this job, the employee is regularly exposed to outdoor weather conditions

    JOB RESPONSIBILITIES:

    • Communicate general beach regulations to guests
    • Communicate specific Covid-19 safety guidelines to guests
    • Answer questions about the Resort/Sandbridge/North End/Bayfront areas (what to see and what to do)
    • Direct guests to nearest restroom facilities
    • Maintain uniformed appearance in order to be easily-recognizable to guests
    • Pick up needed supplies prior to shift
    • Attend training sessions
    • Maintain communication with supervisor regarding questions, suggestions, and issues with guests

    Apply at https://www.imgoingevents.com/application.

    Virginia Beach Public Libraries

    The following libraries are open Monday to Thursday, 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. and Friday and Saturday, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. for limited services: Bayside, Central, Great Neck, Kempsville, Oceanfront, Princess Anne and Windsor Woods

    Wahab Public Law Library is open Monday to Friday, 8:30 a.m to 4:30 p.m.

    The TCC/City Joint-Use Library is open to the public for limited services. The children’s room remains closed. Hours vary; visit VBPL’s locations and hours page for details.

    Limited services include browsing and checking out items, accessing computers and printers and applying for library cards.

    Pungo-Blackwater Library is closed for renovations.

    All dates and services are subject to change

    Customers and staff are required to wear face coverings (in accordance with the Virginia Governor's Executive Order 63) and must keep visits to one hour.

    For more details about library services and COVID practices, visit www.VBgov.com/libraries.

    Parks & Recreation

    Effective Nov. 16, the max capacity for any rec center activity will be limited to 22 patrons or less. For the latest information, please refer to our Parks & Rec FAQ.

    All 7 rec centers are open with new health and safety guidelines in place including online reservations for all rec center activities. See below for details and resources for a safe visit to your community rec center.

    • For more updates on recreation centers and Parks & Rec programs, please read the FAQ document at VBgov.com/parks.

    Princess Anne Athletic Complex, 4001 Dam Neck Road, and City View Park, 2073 Kempsville Road:

    Complete details on the rec center reopenings, including modified operating hours, will be posted at VBgov.com/reopen.

    Planning & Community Development

    Offices will continue to operate by appointment only until further notice.

    • Compete details will be posted at VBgov.com/planning
    • Site plan release/surety posting
    • Limited DSC comment review meeting
    • Residential alterations not exceeding 500 square fee
    • Residential interior alteration
    • Commercial interior alterations less than 2,500 square feet for Use Groups B, M, S, and F.
    • Appointments will be scheduled in one-hour increments. To schedule an appointment please call (757) 385-4621.
    • Staff continues to encourage submittals be dropped off in the building vestibule drop box or online.
    • In-person meetings will be limited to 10 or fewer individuals, with larger meetings continuing to be held virtually.

    For more information, visit VBgov.com/Planning.

    Virginia Beach Police Department

    • The Police Department is open to the public.
    • The Police Department is urging residents to use an online system to notify police of non-emergency crimes: Call 385-5000 and request non-emergency police services.

    Online reporting for the following crimes can be submitted via : https://eprodmz.vbgov.com/MainUI/submissions/SubmissionsMain.aspx

    • Larceny from vehicle – Property taken from a vehicle with a total value less than $500
    • Larceny – Property taken from a location other than a vehicle with a total value less than $500 (Include gas drive offs in this category)
    • Destruction of private property
    • Obscene Phone Call/Communication
    • Annoying Phone Calls/Harassing Communication​​​​​

    For emergencies, a crime in progress, or any incident in which someone was injured, please call 911


    Virginia Beach Emergency Medical Services

    • Virginia Beach Emergency Medical Services (VBEMS) has reopened the Basic Life Support (BLS) Academy enrollment.
    • VBEMS is now accepting applications for volunteers to become EMTs, serve on the Support Services Team, as well as the Marine Rescue Team.
    • For more information and details on how to apply, please visit the VBEMS website at www.vbems.com/join or call (757) 385-1999.


    Virginia Beach Sheriff's Office

    As the novel coronavirus pandemic continues to evolve, the Virginia Beach Sheriff's Office is taking every possible precaution to safeguard the health and safety of every person living and working inside the Virginia Beach Correctional Center. In consultation with health officials and federal, state and local leadership, they are closely monitoring the situation and taking proactive measures to reduce the potential for an exposure in the jail.

    • On-site friends, family AND ATTORNEY visitation for inmates at the Virginia Beach Correctional Center is CANCELED for the foreseeable future.
    • For additional information, visit vbso.net/coronavirus.

    Purchasing Office

    • Will conduct most Pre-Bids and Bids virtually.
    • Those attending bid openings are asked to wear face coverings.The public is required to remain in the reception area while waiting for a meeting to begin.
    • Access to employee offices will not be allowed unless an individual meeting request is made.
    • There is a drop box at the front of the building to drop off box for bid proposal submissions.
    • Visit VBgov.com/purchasing for contact information.

    The Real Estate Assessor's Office will reopen to the public on Monday, July 13 by appointment only. Citizens are strongly encouraged to conduct business online or by phone, email, and fax, however, appointments will be considered to assist when necessary.

    Visit VBgov.com/realestate or contact the Real Estate Assessor's Office at 757-385-4601 or assessor@vbgov.com.

    Reminder
    Governor Ralph Northam's Executive Order 63 currently requires Virginians to wear face coverings in public indoor settings, including state or local government buildings when accessed for the purpose of securing public services, to help contain the spread of the novel coronavirus.

    For the latest information, please visit emergency.vbgov.com/coronavirus and follow us on facebook.com/CityofVaBeach, twitter.com/CityofVaBeach and instagram.com/cityofvabeach.

    The Virginia Department of Health has an online complaint form to report violations of Executive Order 63 (Face Coverings) and Executive Order 65 (Phase Two Easing of Certain Temporary Restrictions). The Virginia Department of Health (VDH) has the authority to enforce Executive Order 63 and section A of Executive Order 65. VDH will review your complaint and forward it to your Local Health Department.

    If you have observed violations of Executive 63 or Executive Order 65 and wish to file a complaint, fill out this report form as completely as possible:

    Complete one report for each location where the incident occurred. Please be advised that any information you provide may be subject to the Freedom of Information Act, Virginia Code Section 2.2-3700, et. seq.

    Closures

    Update May 26, 2020:

    The following City parking lots are currently closed:

    • 19th Street South
    • 18th Street North (overflow special events lot)
    • 4th Street lot

    All other City parking locations are open, including those at Croatan and Sandbridge.

    VB Wave and Bayfront Shuttle Services Suspended this Summer

    ​The VB Wave and Bayfront Shuttle services (Routes 30, 31, and 35) scheduled to start Memorial Day, May 25, 2020 have been suspended this summer due to COVID-19 pandemic restrictions. The suspension of the seasonal services was in part due to Governor Northam's Forward Virginia Phase One guidelines and to safely reopen the beaches.

    There have been other transit service changes in response to the coronavirus pandemic. They are designed to continue essential service to all six cities for transit riders.

    Citizens are encouraged to continue using transit for essential trips, remember to maintain social distance, and exit from the rear of the bus. More information regarding transit service changes due to COVID-19 impacts can be found at the Hampton Roads Transit website: www.gohrt.com.

    For the latest information, please visit emergency.vbgov.com/coronavirus and follow us on facebook.com/CityofVaBeach, twitter.com/CityofVaBeach and instagram.com/cityofvabeach.

    # # # ​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​

    This section includes changes to schedules and operations of City services, facilities and events. Staff are working with event holders, especially for those scheduled during the next 30 days, to identify any cancellations or postponements. The list does not include private events. If you do not see an event here and for the most accurate information, please contact event organizers directly to confirm status.

    Cancellations

    In accordance with Governor Northam's Executive Orders as local directives enacted to protect the health and safety of Virginians and mitigate the spread of the novel coronavirus (COVID-19), most City sponsored events have been either cancelled or rescheduled, unless orders are amended or rescinded by further executive order.

    Updates on events:

    In accordance with Governor Northam's Executive Orders 53 and 55 as well as local directives enacted to protect the health and safety of Virginians and mitigate the spread of the novel coronavirus (COVID-19), most City buildings remain under modified operations.

    Updates on facility operations:

    In accordance with Governor Northam's Executive Orders 53 and 55 as well as local directives enacted to protect the health and safety of Virginians and mitigate the spread of the novel coronavirus (COVID-19), most public meetings have been cancelled, unless orders are amended or rescinded by further executive order.
    Decisions regarding future public meetings are being made as the dates approach.

    • For updates on upcoming City public meetings, please check the Events Calendar on the City website at VBgov.com/Events.


    City Council Meetings

    • City Council is allowed to meet to address issues related to the COVID-19 emergency.
    • City Council meetings will be held virtually until further notice.
    • Citizens are encouraged to submit comments prior to the meetings via email at CityCouncil@vbgov.com. The Council meeting agendas can be viewed online at VBgov.com/CityCouncil.
    • People wanting to comment can register at VBgov.com or register with the City Clerk's Office by calling (757) 385-4303 or via email at ABarnes@vbgov.com prior to the meeting.
    • City Council meetings can be viewed live on VBTV (Cox channel 48 & Verizon channel 45), online at VBgov.com/media and on Facebook.com/CityofVaBeach.

    This section includes changes to schedules and operations of City services, facilities and events. Staff are working with event holders, especially for those scheduled during the next 30 days, to identify any cancellations or postponements. The list does not include private events. If you do not see an event here and for the most accurate information, please contact event organizers directly to confirm status.

    Modifications

    Virginia Beach Animal Care & Adoption Center is open for business.

    The public is welcome to come in to adopt and reclaim pets.

    In order to facilitate social distancing, we ask that guests wait outside/in their car and please use the Facebook appointment feature to schedule a time to come in to meet/adopt a specific pet, browse the selection of pets currently available, or look for a missing pet. We will use Facebook messenger to communicate with you.

    Interested adopters: We will send you a word document questionnaire to fill out and send back prior to your appointment. We will also take your proof of current rabies/city license (for current household pets) and lease (with pet policy)/mortgage statements electronically.

    To contact VBACAC:
    Phone: 757-385-4444, option #2
    Email: VBPDAC@vbgov.com
    Facebook: www.facebook.com/VBAnimalCareandAdoptionCenter/

    Virginia Beach Human Services has implemented modified operations and had discontinued public access to building facilities.

    • Staff will continue to work on-site at various locations as well as working remotely to meet the service needs of our citizens via telehealth (video), by phone, or out in the community in low exposure settings where social distancing is possible.
    • For detailed information on how to access services, including SNAF, TANIF, Medicaid, Energy Assistance, Child Care Subsidy, Behavioral Health and Developmental Services, and emergency hotlines, click here.

    Virginia Beach Department of Health

    For information on Department of Health hours for Clinics, Pharmacy, WIC Program and Dental, please visit http://www.vdh.virginia.gov/virginia-beach/hours/.

    • Vital Statistics will be closed. Vital Statistic services will be available at the Norfolk Health Department for funeral directors/runners ONLY. The public should process their requests online through the Virginia Department of Health website.
    • Environmental Health will be offering limited services by appointment only, Monday – Friday from 8:15 a.m. – 5:00 p.m. Transactions are available over the phone or online. For more information, please call (757) 518-2700, option #3 or visit our website for applications at http://www.vdh.virginia.gov/virginia-beach/forms-and-applications/.

    VB Strong Center:

    • Please call to schedule telehealth visits for: individual appointments, intake and support services, class registrations.
    • Contact the VB Strong Center at 757-507-7200, 9 a.m. - 2 p.m., Mon. - Fri. or visit https://thevbstrongcenter.org/.

    Pathways Center has suspended client visitation until further notice.

    Waste Management has temporarily discontinued walk-in service.

    Phone service will be limited, and delays can be expected.

    For faster service, customers are encouraged to contact us through email at waste@vbgov.com, website at www.vbgov.com/wastemgt, or the SeeClickFix phone app.

    This section includes changes to schedules and operations of City services, facilities and events. Staff are working with event holders, especially for those scheduled during the next 30 days, to identify any cancellations or postponements. The list does not include private events. If you do not see an event here and for the most accurate information, please contact event organizers directly to confirm status.

    Be Aware

    Recognizing Legitimate Contact Tracers from Potential Scams

    The Virginia Department of Health (VDH) encourages all Virginians to respond and engage with legitimate contact tracing calls and emails while remaining vigilant against scams. The Commonwealth employs contact tracers to notify individuals who have been exposed to known cases of COVID-19. Contact tracing saves lives by preventing the spread of COVID-19, so we encourage every Virginian to do their part and answer calls, text messages, or emails from the Commonwealth’s contact tracers, while also remaining aware of potential contact tracing scams.

    Important information to know:

    • When a contact tracer is calling you, caller ID will read “VDH COVID Team.”
    • Contact tracers will not ask for money or information such as a Social Security Number (SSN), bank account details, or credit card numbers.
    • The Commonwealth does not charge individuals for contact tracing services.

    VDH News Release re: Legitimate Contact Tracers

    Malicious Website

    A malicious website pretending to be the live map for "Coronavirus COVID-19 Global Cases" by Johns Hopkins University is circulating on the internet waiting for unwitting internet users (PDF) to visit the website (corona-virus-map[dot]com). Visiting the website infects the user with the AZORult trojan, an information stealing program which can exfiltrate a variety of sensitive data. It is likely being spread via infected email attachments, malicious online advertisements and social engineering. Anyone searching the internet for a coronavirus map could unwittingly navigate to this malicious website.

    Please make sure to exercise caution when opening emails from outside organizations even if those organizations may seem reputable. Information on how to identify e-mail phishing and ransomware attacks can be found in the Health Industry Cybersecurity Practices (PDF) guidelines provided by the U.S. Department of Health & Human Services.

    Home Sanitizing Scam

    A post on NextDoor alerts of a scam involving men going door-to-door to sanitize homes. According to the post, two men wearing white uniforms are saying they are with the City and they need to sanitize your home. They will ask you to leave so they can spray inside but once inside, they will rob the home. The NextDoor post reports that it happened on Hoylake Drive near Edwin and the person says they reported it to the police. The police do not have any record of calls describing this kind of activity.

    How to Avoid Becoming a Victim of COVID-19 Scams

    Read the full FBI article

    If you believe you were a victim of a scam or attempted fraud involving COVID-19, or think you have information of suspicious activity by a vendor, please report it:

    • Call the Norfolk Field Office at (757) 455-0100 or 1-800-CALL-FBI
    • Submit a tip to the FBI online at tips.fbi.gov
    • If it’s a cyber scam, submit your complaint to the Internet Crime Complaint Center at ic3.gov
    • Contact the National Center for Disaster Fraud Hotline at 866-720-5721 or at justice.gov/DisasterComplaintFraud

    Possible Utility Scam

    ​Virginia Beach Public Utilities was notified that some customers are receiving calls from someone claiming to work for the City. The caller advises that Public Utilities will be turning the customer's water off imminently for non-payment and requests payment over the phone. Virginia Beach Public Utilities is not currently turning customers' water service off for delinquency, due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Virginia Beach Public Utilities urges residents to never give personal or banking information to an unverified or unsolicited caller.

    Resources

    Money

    City Services Bill Pandemic Relief Program

    The City Services Bill Pandemic Relief Program provides financial assistance to qualifying residential customers who are experiencing financial hardship due to the impacts of COVID-19. The Virginia Beach City Services Bill includes charges for solid waste collection, storm water, sanitary sewer, and water services. The pandemic relief program will provide financial assistance to qualifying applicants based on the services charged on their monthly bill. Relief is not guaranteed and is dependent on availability of funding.

    Applicants are strongly encouraged to establish an account in the City Services Bill Pandemic Relief Program database in order to receive updates on the status of the application. The email used to establish the account is the email that will receive application status updates. Due to program demand, application status updates are only available through the online application portal.

    Eligibility Requirements

    • Applicant must be a Virginia Beach resident with an active City Services account
    • Applicant must be listed as an account holder on the requested City Services account
    • Account must have been active from March 2020 or later
    • Account must have an unpaid balance due from March 2020 or later (prior balances are ineligible)
    • Applicant has been unemployed, furloughed, or laid off in March 2020 or later

    Application Requirements

    • Proof of unemployment, furlough, or lay off in March 2020 or later (one of the following)
    • Valid award letter for unemployment benefits from Virginia Employment Commission
    • Valid award letter for self-employed individual through the CARES Act
    • Verification of job loss from employer on letterhead confirming termination, furlough, or lay-off
    • Copy of most recent City Services Bill matching the account number entered on the application (bill’s due date must be March 2020 or later)
    • Service address must match the address on the application and on the proof of unemployment
    • Applicant must confirm that information provided is true and correct
    • Application must be complete, and all required documents must be valid and legible

    PLEASE NOTE THAT YOU MUST CREATE SEPARATE ACCOUNTS TO APPLY FOR THE CITY SERVICES BILL PANDEMIC RELIEF PROGRAM AND THE REAL ESTATE AND PERSONAL PROPERTY TAX RELIEF PROGRAM. YOU MAY USE THE SAME EMAIL ADDRESS BUT, A UNIQUE PASSWORD IS REQUIRED TO CREATE EACH ACCOUNT.

    For more information and to apply for the City Services Bill Pandemic Relief Program, please visit www.vbgov.com/CSPandemicRelief.

    If you experience trouble with the application, please take a look at the common application errors.

    Short-Term Mortgage Assistance Program

    The Short-Term Mortgage Assistance Program is available to help prevent the foreclosure of eligible low- and moderate-income homeowners in Virginia Beach who have experienced loss of employment income due to COVID-19. The program provides eligible households with short-term assistance to pay mortgage payments that were delinquent on or after April 1, 2020. Assistance is provided one time and payments are made directly to the mortgage company. This program does not provide rental assistance.

    For more information on the Short-Term Mortgage Assistance Program, including eligibility requirements and to complete a pre-screening questionnaire, visit: vbgov.com/mortgageassistance.


    Virginia Rent and Mortgage Relief Program

    Landlords can now apply to receive rental assistance on behalf of tenants. Through a new state program administered by Virginia Housing; the Virginia Rent and Mortgage Relief Program (RMRP), eligible landlords can apply on behalf of their tenants to receive financial assistance for past-due rental payments dating back to April 1, 2020. Funding for RMRP is through the federal Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act to provide relief for renters experiencing financial difficulties due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

    Applications must be received by 11:59 p.m. EST on Dec. 30, 2020 (note: deadline was extended) — take action today to see how RMRP may help your tenants make their past-due and current rent payments. For eligibility information and to start the application process, visit VirginiaHousing.com/RMRP.


    Homeless Prevention and Related Programs – Coordinated Intake and Referral (For people experiencing homelessness/about to become homeless):

    • Eligibility: Persons experiencing homelessness or immediately at risk of experiencing homelessness within two weeks (pandemic related or not)
    • Description: Screening and referral for available programs based on the individual’s situation; not guaranteed assistance.
    • How to apply: Call the regional Housing Crisis Hotline – phone 227-5932- the Hotline is operated by ForKids, Inc; it makes referrals for in-depth assessment and then referral to appropriate/available programs or services
    • Deadline: there is no deadline. This is an ongoing service

    State Rental Assistance Program (For people facing eviction/behind in their rent due to the pandemic:).

    • Eligibility: Persons facing eviction or needing help with rent due to the pandemic only
    • Description: Financial assistance to help prevent eviction
    • How to apply: call 587-4202; operated by ForKids, Inc. ; DHNP may be developing a coordinated or integrated response
    • Deadline: There is no deadline at this time

    Real Estate & Personal Property Tax Relief Program

    The Department of Human Services is accepting applications for the Real Estate and Personal Property Tax Relief Program. Applications will be accepted through Monday, Nov. 30. The program provides direct relief for households where an occupant has lost their employment, had their work hours reduced or has been furloughed due to COVID-19. Financial relief comes in the form of a check for the approved relief amount to the named recipient.

    A maximum relief of $500 for residential real estate taxes and $250 for personal property tax has been established for eligible households. The amount of relief will be the billed total, or the benefit maximum, whichever is lower. Each household could potentially receive both benefits for a maximum relief amount of $750. Only one application may be filed per household.

    Any impacted household, whether they have paid their tax bill or not, is encouraged to apply if they meet the eligibility requirements.

    To be eligible for consideration, potential beneficiaries must:

    • Provide proof of eligibility criteria
    • Have established Virginia Beach residency as of March 1, 2020
    • Be unemployed at any time after March 1, 2020 due to the COVID-19 pandemic
    • Provide a copy of their 2020 real estate and/or personal property tax bills

    Potential beneficiaries may only claim their primary residence for relief – no rental or second properties are eligible. Applications will be processed as they are received. Please note that any accrued late fees, penalties or interest are the responsibility of the bill holder and are not eligible for relief.

    For more information, including necessary documents for proof of eligibility and applications, visit: VBgov.com/COVID19TaxRelief.

    CARES Act Arts & Cultural Relief Grants

    The application period for the CARES Act Arts & Cultural Relief Grants closed on Nov. 15, 2020.

    The application period for the CARES Act Community Organization Grants closed on Oct. 1, 2020.

    CARES Act Business Assistance Grants

    The City of Virginia Beach recognizes that small businesses are being impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic. To encourage businesses to continue their operations and help mitigate the negative impacts of the pandemic, the City has established a system to award monetary grants to assist businesses with costs incurred during the pandemic. These grants are intended to provide immediate financial relief for expenses already incurred by the businesses and are funded through an allocation of funds provided through the Federal Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act.

    Applications are being accepted November 16 - December 7, 2020 by 5 p.m.

    Applications will be accepted only via the City of Virginia Beach Online Portal and will be processed in the order received. At the conclusion of the application period, grants will be awarded through a lottery system until either December 31, 2020, or all available funding is expended. Please note that the submission of an application does not guarantee approval as eligibility criteria must be met and all supporting documentation included.

    For questions, contact:

    For more information on the CARES Act Business Assistance Program and to apply, visit:

    https://www.yesvirginiabeach.com/resources/Pages/COVID-19-Resources.aspx

    Virginia Beach Pandemic Relief Partnership

    The Virginia Beach Pandemic Relief Partnership assists Virginia Beach residents and small businesses who have been financially impacted by COVID-19.

    This is a partnership between the City, The United Way of South Hampton Roads, the Foodbank of Southeastern Virginia and the Eastern Shore, the Hampton Roads Workforce Council and LISC Hampton Roads to provide assistance with:

    • Food access
    • Utility payments
    • Rent or mortgage assistance
    • Childcare
    • Healthcare costs
    • Job training
    • Small business grants

    For more information and to apply for assistance, visit vbrelief.org.

    Residents

    COVID-19 testing may be available at your doctor’s office, urgent care center, pharmacy, or other healthcare clinic. Some testing sites in Virginia are offering community testing events, such as drive-thru testing, Each site has different policies and procedures for testing and billing; please reach out to the individual site for information about testing availability.

    Your doctor will decide if you need a test for COVID-19. If they decide that testing is needed, they might collect samples to test you or tell you where you can go to be tested. Not everyone needs to be tested Most people who have COVID-19 are able to recover at home without medical care.

    Costs
    Many health insurance plans cover the cost of testing and related health care costs. For specific information about your health insurance coverage, call your insurance company. Most insurance covers testing cost without a co-pay.

    Uninsured or under-insured people in Virginia with COVID-19 symptoms can get tested through the state public health lab for free. Please contact a free clinic, federally qualified health center, or emergency department to have the specimen collected. Your local health department can help you get connected with one of these places for testing.

    Testing Sites

    The Virginia Department of Health has an interactive COVID-19 Testing Sites Map which provides information of known locations of various COVID-19 test sampling sites and does not constitute endorsement by VDH.

    There may be additional sites that offer test sampling that are not included on the map and the status of listed sites are subject to change (may no longer perform COVID-19 testing services).

    DMV Reopening Plan

    To minimize customer volume at DMV offices and testing sites, appointments are required for specific services generally necessitating in-person service. Customers should use alternate service methods, such as online or by mail, when possible.

    DMV does not charge a fee for appointments. Please ensure that you book directly through the official Virginia DMV website. DMV cannot guarantee appointments made through third-party sites.

    • Customers are limited to one appointment per person.
    • Multiple appointments made by the same person will be canceled.
    • Customers who arrive late may need to reschedule.
    • Please do not bring other people with you to your appointment unless you need them to conduct your transaction or for personal assistance.
    • DMV can only allow a limited number of people in an office at one time.

    For a complete list of customer service centers open to the public and services currently being provided, visit https://www.dmv.virginia.gov/general/#appointments.asp.

    For details on DMV operations, visit https://www.dmv.virginia.gov/.

    • The United Way provides food assistance. Contact their hotline at (757) 858-7777, or fill out an online form at unitedwayshr.org/coronavirus and a case manager will contact you.
    • For a list of food pantries open in Virginia Beach, click here. Changes in the list can occur at any time. Please call before going. Most pantries will have pre-packed non-perishable boxes.
    • PLEASE NOTE: As of Aug. 10, the food pantry at The Gathering @ Scott Memorial is closed temporarily due to COVID exposure.
    • The Foodbank of Southeastern Virginia and the Eastern Shore, is no longer scheduling drive-through food distributions. It has reverted back to normal operations where it distributes food to partner agencies, such as food pantries.
    • To find partner agencies, search by your zip code here.

    Virginia Beach Department of Human Services (VBDHS) has discontinued public access to building facilities until further notice. Staff will continue to work on site at various locations as well as from remote locations to meet the service needs of our citizens via telehealth (video), by phone, or out in the ​community in low exposure settings where social distancing is possible.

    Financial Assistance:

    • Medicaid (Medical Assistance): Apply online at www.CommonHelp.virginia.gov​ or call Cover VA at (855) 242-8282 or the Enterprise Call Center at 855-635-4370.
    • Food Assistance (SNAP), Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF), Child Care Subsidy, and Energy Assistance: Apply online at www.CommonHelp.virginia.gov​ or call 855-635-4370. ​
    • For those who cannot apply online or by phone, we’re offering appointments for curbside pick-up of SNAP EBT cards and paper applications for SNAP benefits are available near the drop box at 3432 Virginia Beach Blvd.
    • City of Virginia Beach Water Assistance Program: Call 757-385-3431
    • ​To report case changes, inquire about the status of benefits, and for general questions regarding SNAP, TANF, Medicaid, and Energy Assistance, call 757-385-4306.
    • Child Care Subsidy: Call 757-385-3351.

    Emergency Hotlines:

    • Adult Protective Services (APS): To report suspected neglect or abuse of adults, call 757-385-3550, Monday thru Friday, 8 a.m. – 5 p.m. Or, 888-832-3858 for all calls outside of regular business hours
    • Child Protective Services (CPS): To report suspected neglect or abuse of children, call 757-385-3400 or 800-552-7096, Available 24/7
    • Emergency Mental Health Services: Call 757-385-0888

    Behavioral Health & Developmental Services:

    • Adult Outpatient Mental Health Services (including Same Day Access): 757-385-0511
    • Child & Youth Mental Health Services (Including Same Day Access): 757-385-0850
    • Developmental Services: 757-385-0600
    • Emergency Mental Health Services: 757-385-0888 (available 24/7)
    • Informational Warmline: 757-385-0978 (available M-F 8:30 a.m. - 5 p.m.)

    To address the routine and non-emergency needs of our citizens, VBDHS has created additional pathways for citizens to communicate with our essential service staff members by using the email addresses listed below. These accounts will be monitored daily Monday through Friday and responses will be provided within one business day.

    Accessible Information for Deaf, Hard of Hearing and Deafblind

    Virginia Beach Department of Health

    For information on Department of Health hours for Clinics, Pharmacy, WIC Program and Dental, please visit http://www.vdh.virginia.gov/virginia-beach/hours/.

    The Virginia Beach Department of Public Health Women, Infants and Children (WIC) Program continues to accept new applicants to apply for services. WIC provides nutritious foods, nutrition education and breastfeeding support. Remote WIC services are available for new families to enroll in the program. Appointments will be conducted over the phone. To be eligible for the WIC program, applicants must meet categorical, residential and income guidelines.

    To apply, call your local WIC office:

    • Pembroke WIC Office: (757) 518-2789
    • Norfolk Avenue WIC Office: (757) 491-5183
    • Indian River WIC Office: (757) 424-9970
    • Oceana WIC Office: (757) 491-5928

    More information about the WIC Program acan be found at the VDH website: http://www.vdh.virginia.gov/virginia-beach/women-infants-and-children-wic/ or their Facebook page at https://m.facebook.com/VirginiaBeachWIC/.

    211 Virginia

    • 2-1-1 is Virginia’s central source for information and referrals for essential health and human service needs.
    • Online: at 211virginia.org, people can search for resources, view important alerts, and find out how to contact 211 by email, chat or phone.
    • Phone: people can dial 2-1-1. This is a free phone number that provides information about local resources such as food assistance, shelter, utility assistance, and health care. It is available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. When someone dials 2-1-1, a trained professional listens to the situation and suggests sources of help using one of the largest databases of health and human services in Virginia. All referrals are confidential.
    • Organizations that provide ongoing services to the general public are encouraged to add their organization to the 2-1-1 database through the link “Update/Add Your Agency” at the top of the 2-1-1 website.
    • New time-limited services that are open to the general public during this health emergency, can be sent to 211admin@councilofcommunityservices.org.

    Homeless Prevention and Related Programs – Coordinated Intake and Referral (For people experiencing homelessness/about to become homeless):

    • Eligibility: Persons experiencing homelessness or immediately at risk of experiencing homelessness within two weeks (pandemic related or not)
    • Description: Screening and referral for available programs based on the individual’s situation; not guaranteed assistance.
    • How to apply: Call the regional Housing Crisis Hotline – phone 227-5932- the Hotline is operated by ForKids, Inc; it makes referrals for in-depth assessment and then referral to appropriate/available programs or services
    • Deadline: there is no deadline. This is an ongoing service

    State Rental Assistance Program (For people facing eviction/behind in their rent due to the pandemic:).

    • Eligibility: Persons facing eviction or needing help with rent due to the pandemic only
    • Description: Financial assistance to help prevent eviction
    • How to apply: call 587-4202; operated by ForKids, Inc. ; DHNP may be developing a coordinated or integrated response
    • Deadline: There is no deadline at this time

    People behind on their mortgage/facing foreclosure:

    • The state program may be able to assist, but is currently prioritizing renters. DHNP will begin a mortgage program in approximately mid-August.

    Eviction & Foreclosure Prevention Resources

    Virginia Poverty Law Center - information on a variety of important resources to assist with navigating through the pandemic including protections for tenants, temporary changes to public housing policies, and loss of income during the pandemic.

    Customer Service Updates:

    At this time, Public Utilities is is not disconnecting water service due to nonpayment. To avoid water service termination once service turn-offs for nonpayment are resumed, please continue to make regular payments on your account.

    Public Utilities is not accepting walk-in customers and the call center (385-4631) is only accepting urgent and emergency calls until further notice.

    Urgent and emergency calls include:

    • Water turn-on requests for new service
    • Water turn-off requests for moving out
    • No water complaints
    • Low water pressure complaints
    • Burst pipes or other emergency turn-offs
    • Meter leaks
    • Hazardous meter lids

    Routine requests can be submitted online at www.vbgov.com/puonlineservices or by email at vbwater@vbgov.com and will be processed as soon as possible.

    Volunteer Opportunities

    • The Medical Reserve Corps (MRC) is recruiting volunteers for its COVID-19 response. They accept volunteers with and without medical certifications. Anyone interested should register at https://www.vamrc.org.
    • If you would like to volunteer with one of the many voluntary agencies that have stepped up to assist our community at this time, visit Volunteer Hampton Roads at https://www.volunteerhr.org/coronavirus.

    Donation Opportunities

    • If you would like to make a monetary donation to assist people impacted by COVID-19, United Way of South Hampton Roads has established a Coronavirus Recovery Fund. Please visit https://unitedwayshr.org/coronavirus/ or you can text COVID to 41444 to make a donation.
    • If you would like to make a food donation, the Foodbank of Southeastern Virginia and the Eastern Shore has changed their donation process in response to COVID-19. For up to date information on food donation visit, https://foodbankonline.org/covid-19/

    The Virginia Department of Health has an online complaint form to report violations of Executive Order 63 (Face Coverings) and Executive Order 65 (Phase Two Easing of Certain Temporary Restrictions). The Virginia Department of Health (VDH) has the authority to enforce Executive Order 63 and section A of Executive Order 65. VDH will review your complaint and forward it to your Local Health Department.

    If you have observed violations of Executive 63 or Executive Order 65 and wish to file a complaint, fill out this report form as completely as possible:

    Complete one report for each location where the incident occurred. Please be advised that any information you provide may be subject to the Freedom of Information Act, Virginia Code Section 2.2-3700, et. seq.

    United Way of South Hampton Roads

    If you are in need of assistance as a result of Coronavirus, please click on the link below or call the United Way Coronavirus hotline: (757) 858-7777

    If you reach a voicemail due to call volume, please leave a detailed message and you will receive a return call promptly.

    https://unitedwayshr.org/coronavirus-help/

    Businesses

    The Virginia Beach Department of Economic Development has developed a collection of national, state, and local resources available to businesses and employees: COVID-19 Business Resources

    In addition to traditional SBA funding programs, the CARES Act established several new temporary programs to address the COVID-19 outbreak.

    SBA Debt Relief

    • The SBA is providing a financial reprieve to small businesses during the COVID-19 pandemic.

    SBA Bridge Loans

    • Enables small businesses who currently have a business relationship with an SBA Express Lender to access up to $25,000 quickly.

    For information on all the above relief funding options, visit https://www.sba.gov/funding-programs/loans/coronavirus-relief-options.

    SBA Small Business Guidance & Loan Resources - Coronavirus (COVID-19)

    Relief for Taxpayers Affected by Ongoing Coronavirus Pandemic

    • For information on all COVID-related state tax relief for income taxpayers, visit the Virginia Tax website.

    Virginia Department of Health Guidance for Food Establishments Regarding COVID‐19

    The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has developed interim guidance for businesses and Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID‐19). This inforamtion summarizes key CDC recommendations and provide VDH‐specific recommendations or details for food and food establishments.


    Guidance for Flushing Building Plumbing Systems after Prolonged Shutdown

    Public water supplies are safe and unaffected by the SARS-CoV-2 virus that causes COVID-19. However, water quality within buildings that have been vacant or have seen little use during the pandemic restrictions may be impacted due the closure. To make sure stagnant water is fully removed before employees return to work, it’s important that building owners thoroughly flush their establishment’s plumbing systems before reopening. These practices are recommended for schools, daycares, lodging, offices, places of worship, event venues, retail, libraries, museums, restaurants, gyms, healthcare and other facilities which have remained closed during the COVID-19 shutdown. To flush water systems in closed buildings, Hampton Roads utility directors advise owners and property managers to follow these steps:

    For more details and guidance for large businesses, check with The Environmental Science, Policy, and Research Institute and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention websites.


    Guidance for Grease Control Device (GCD) Cleaning after Prolonged Shutdown

    Regular grease control device (GCD) maintenance and cleanings are necessary to help prevent fats, oils, and grease (FOG) from entering the sanitary sewer system. Please review the below document to ensure your food service establishment is staying in compliance with the City of Virginia Beach’s FOG Ordinance.

    Contacts

    Information Hotlines

    • The Virginia Beach Department of Public Health hotline: 757-683-2745 (Monday - Friday, 9 a.m. - 12:30 p.m. and 1:30 - 5 p.m. Messages will be monitored over the weekend).
    • The Virginia Department of Health hotline: 877-ASK-VDH3

    Department of Human Services Emergency Hotlines

    • Adult Protective Services (APS) – to report suspected neglect or abuse of adults
      • 757-385-3550, Monday thru Friday, 8 a.m. – 5 p.m.
      • 888-832-3858 for all calls outside of regular business hours
    • Child Protective Services (CPS) – to report suspected neglect or abuse of children
      • 757-385-3400 or 800-552-7096, Available 24/7
    • Emergency Mental Health Services - 757-385-0888

    Videos

    VB411 in the Know - Halloween Guidelines - Oct. 22, 2020

    VB411 In the Know - Financial Assistance Programs - Sept. 3, 2020

    VB411 In the Know - COVID-19 Relief Programs (Real Estate, PPT & City Services Bill) - July 27, 2020

    Mayor Bobby Dyer: Together We Can Reduce the Spread of COVID-19 - July 27, 2020

    VB411 In the Know - Recreation Centers Reopening, June 17, 2020

    VB411 In the Know - Phase Two Reopenings, June 10, 2020

    VB411 In the Know - Hurricane Preparedness During the Pandemic - June 3, 2020

    VB411 In the Know - Mental Health Services, May 14, 2020

    VB411 In the Know - Meals Tax Holiday, May 6, 2020

    VB411 In the Know - Volunteer & Donation Opportunities, April 28, 2020

    VB411 In the Know - COVID-19 Emergency Website, April 22, 2020

    VB411 In the Know - Resources for Businesses, April 8, 2020

    Coronavirus Update from Mayor Bobby Dyer - April 4, 2020

    VB411 In the Know - Human Services Modifications, April 1, 2020

    Coronavirus Update from Mayor Bobby Dyer - March 20, 2020

    Coronavirus Update from Mayor Bobby Dyer - March 20, 2020