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Capital Planning

Light poles

Virginia Commonwealth University’s capital budget is prepared in accordance with the commonwealth of Virginia’s capital outlay process. This process is one where the governor recommends capital projects for funding in the budget bill, which is submitted to the General Assembly. The General Assembly reviews capital projects for all state agencies and institutions. The Appropriation Act authorizes the expenditure of funds for specific capital projects.

Procedures

Capital budget planning follows formal state review and approval procedures. The process requires VCU to prepare a master site plan, a multi-year capital development plan, a biennial budget capital outlay request, project preplanning, and when debt financing is proposed, a financial feasibility study. All of this must occur before a capital project can be approved for funding.

Master Site Plan The Master Site Plan describes the boundaries of the campus, the campus architecture, the placement of buildings and future expansion plans in terms of new construction and renovations to existing buildings.
Multi-year Capital Development Plan The commonwealth of Virginia looks beyond the two year capital budget planning cycle to establish funding priorities. As such, capital plans are presented for six years into the future.
Biennial Budget Capital Outlay Request This request is the most important step in the process. The governor issues a call for capital budget requests every two years. This call precedes the General Assembly’s long session in the even-numbered years. Only emergency capital projects are considered during the short session in the odd-numbered years.

Approval process for capital projects

Capital projects are authorized by the General Assembly in the Appropriation Act. Once a capital project is authorized, design can proceed. Design includes the preparation of formal schematic, preliminary and working drawings by a professional architect or engineering firm. Approval by the Virginia Division of Engineering and Buildings is required before a project can proceed from one design stage to another. Once working drawings are approved by the state, the project can be bid. Construction bidding is regulated by Virginia’s Public Procurement Act and rules prescribed by the Virginia Division of Procurement and Supply. Construction administration is the responsibility of VCU under the aegis of the commonwealth of Virginia.