VA has had a couple programs to promote beekeeping. For a couple years, you could submit for reimbursement after purchasing hives or bees. Recently, they've had a program to fund replacement of hives lost over winter. Limits were fairly low, they were clearly targeting the backyard beekeepers. I don't know if this latest program augments or replaces those other programs. Everyone I know with bees steered away from these because they didn't want to feel under the thumb of a government entity.
There has never been any mention of the success rate of this venture, I am of the opinion that if a beekeeper invests in his equipment he will take greater care of it. As it is I think the hive losses in VA will continue to grow if this trend continues. Who knows if the state just appropriates tax payers money so that some can get free hives how long will it be before they start appropriating my bees to give to less fortunate people who cannot keep theirs alive.
Virginia has managed its finances fairly well overall. I would rather see some of the surplus go into a progam like this that has some benefit, than wait for a politician to decide to waste millions like they did on the Hwy. 460 by-pass "study". I did not make use of this progam or its predecessor, so no dog in the fight.
I would prefer lower taxes than wasting any money at all. Subsidizing hobbies seems wasteful to me, and we all know the bees don't need saving. At least not the honeybees. I have no dog in this fight either, not from Virginia. Seems like adding another inspector or buying irradiation equipment would have been a better use of the funds if they felt like they HAD to spend the money.
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