The Hopewell Community and Industry Panel (HCIP) will nurture an environmental, economic and cultural bond among citizens, local government and industries, so that our shared life will benefit members of our community individually and collectively.

Meeting the Objective

Much of the first year was spent organizing and identifying goals, and teaching members about issues affecting citizens and the environment. One of the HCIP’s early accomplishments was “What You See, Hear and Smell” – an open forum where citizens could talk directly with plant managers. The event was deemed a success and the HCIP formed plans for other accomplishments that followed.

  • Annual emergency-preparedness drills at local industries involving industries, local and state government and public safety agencies, citizens and media.
  • Industry officials attend City Council meetings annually to discuss their spills and releases. These discussions, where yearly industry environment impact information is shared with the public six months before the EPA releases it to the rest of the nation, have gone a long way toward cementing the cooperation between Hopewell and its industries.
  • HCIP members installed the Hopewell Emergency Notification System in 1993. HENS is a self-contained, regional radio system that can provide instant warning to citizens, industries, schools, and local and state officials in the event of hazardous chemical release into the environment.
  • Industries and safety officials provide public information on the city’s Automated Citizens Information System, and HCIP project completed in 1995.
  • Throughout 1993, the local media published the column “Venting Steam,” which addressed citizens’ question about industry and the environment.
  • Honeywell, Smurfit-Stone Container Corp., Hercules Inc., Virginia-American Water Co. and other HCIP members have hosted school science class tours and taken their expertise to the classroom, educating our students on what is produced in Hopewell.
  • Hercules Inc.’s Aqualon plant and Honeywell have created state-certified wildlife habitats on their plant sites.
  • Honeywell hosted a plant Open House in April 1995, where 13,000 visitors spent a Saturday learning about their local industrial neighbor.
  • The HCIP won the International City / County Management Association’s Partnership Award in 1998. Governor Jim Gilmore, who called the Panel a model for all Virginians to follow, came to Hopewell in September of that year to present the award to the Mayor and members of the HCIP.