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Project Rebound Releases Blueprint Report for Local Economic Recovery

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Project Rebound, a local economic recovery initiative for Charlottesville and Albemarle County, today released “A Blueprint for Economic Resiliency and Reinvention in the Greater Charlottesville Region.”

The report, produced by KPMG LLP, maps out economic recovery action steps for the business community. The recommended actions are based on data from stakeholder meetings and followup interviews with more than 300 local participants.

“This Blueprint can be a starting point on the road to economic recovery,” said Charlottesville Regional Chamber of Commerce President & CEO Elizabeth Cromwell. “Project Rebound will continue bringing the business community together to build partnerships around the most promising solutions.”

An overarching theme that emerged from local conversations was the need to rebuild consumer, business and workforce confidence. Participants identified health & safety concerns, an uncertain business environment, and confusion over guidelines as some of the confidence barriers to economic recovery.

The Blueprint identifies six priority areas for immediate action to bolster confidence and boost the economy, while appropriately reflecting current public health realities:

(1) authoritative safety protocols

(2) trustworthy information sharing and ways to access resources

(3) facilitating access to testing

(4) working with government on emergency policies

(5) continued inclusive conversation

(6) a buy-local initiative

The full Blueprint report is available at www.CvilleChamber.com/blueprint.

The Blueprint envisions the economic recovery process as an opportunity not just to “bounce back,” but to nurture a more resilient and inclusive economy, ensuring that economic progress includes those who have been historically and systematically excluded.

“As Project Rebound convened multiple conversations in May, it became clear that voices were missing,” Cromwell said. “Our business community needs to work harder to build trust with communities of color and foster equity in everything we do.”

“The Chamber board is planning to develop an equity council to help inform the Chamber's future decisions regarding programming, governance and staffing,” Cromwell said. “The board will seek the advice of the Chamber Minority Business Alliance in this development.”

Over the next several weeks, Project Rebound will convene further conversations to help determine next steps and bring attention to solutions already underway.

“Project Rebound will provide a platform for collaborations,” Cromwell said. “We look forward to seeing our innovative business community bring its energy to an inclusive recovery.”

Local organizations are invited to host a presentation and discussion of the Blueprint. Those interested should contact connect@cvillechamber.com or call the Chamber at 434.295.3141.

Project Rebound is led by the Charlottesville Regional Chamber of Commerce in collaboration with economic development partners at the University of Virginia, Albemarle County, and the City of Charlottesville and supported by volunteers and funding from the City, County and GO Virginia.

Please visit www.cvillechamber.com/rebound to learn more.

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