Public Access Authority

The Northern Neck Chesapeake Bay Public Access Authority (NNCBPAA) was created to identify land, held privately or owned by the Commonwealth of Virginia, that can be secured or purchased for use by the general public as a public access site. With already acquired lands, the Authority determines the appropriate public-use level for each site. Public & Tax Benefits Brochure


Why: The population of the four counties of the Northern Neck stands at around 52,000. Today, natural views, wildlife, open fields, woods, creeks, ponds or rivers surround most residents in the region. And because we live among these abundant natural landscapes, we can easily take them for granted. In the coming decades, as the population of the Northern Neck grows, it will be vital to maintain and increase access to open fields, parks, boat-launch ramps, fishing, birding, hiking, and any number of natural recreational activities—if we are to maintain the quality of life we currently enjoy.

How: Future access to natural settings will take planning, and that was the basis for the creation of the Northern Neck-Chesapeake Bay Public Access Authority, which was established by the Northern Neck-Chesapeake Bay Public Access Authority Act, and codified in Chapter 66.1 (§ 15.2-6626 et seq.) of Title 15.2 of the Code of Virginia, in 2005.


• Inventory existing public-access sites
• Increase the usefulness of existing sites
• Seek local input on potential new sites
• Determine ownership of proposed sites
• Buy and sell land to fulfill the Authority’s mission
• Develop new public-access sites
• Increase public access for all residents
• Preserve the natural beauty of the Northern Neck

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