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Tourism Development Fund Grant Application Process Now Open

Post Date:02/22/2019 9:25 AM

The City of Williamsburg is pleased to announce that the Tourism Development Fund (TDF) Phase 1 application process is now open. Any City project that can be shown to increase patronage to restaurants, attractions, hotels and events can qualify and be considered.

Williamsburg City Council adopted the TDF in 2017 as a means by which to increase patronage to restaurants, attractions, hotels, and events in the City through financial assistance and reinvestment in tourism products, place-making projects, special events, public-private partnerships, and destination marketing. The TDF is funded through a portion of a 1% sales tax increase set by Virginia Senate Bill 942 (2018).

The Phase 1 application is a short application consisting primarily of a thorough project description. The Phase 1 application should be completed and submitted to the City by March 29, 2019. City staff will conduct a Phase 1 application review which is designed to determine eligibility for funding. The intent of the Phase 1 review is to limit the applicant’s expense preparing application materials for a project that may not be eligible for TDF award.

Once the Phase 1 applications are received and reviewed, if eligibility is met, applicants are invited to submit a Phase 2 application which will be much more robust and will feature economic impact studies, artistic renderings, market analysis and/or a strong business plan in addition to a standardized application packet.

The Phase 2 applications will be reviewed by the newly formed Tourism Development Grant Review Committee. Committee members are: Christopher Caracci, Andrew Voss, Scott Foster, Craig Reeves, Sally Wolfe, Adam Steely as the Economic Development Authority Ex-officio, and Elaine McBeth as the Planning Commission Ex-officio. The City’s new Tourism Development Specialist, Lysa Byham, serves as staff contact.

The first round of grant consideration will begin in April 2019. For more information please email Lysa Byham at or call (757) 220-6129.