(a) The board shall accept and review applications from eligible businesses and shall determine the investment worthiness, the benefits to the West Virginia economy, the leverage potential for investments in small business investment companies, the jobs creation potential and the economic circumstances of the region or regions of the state that would benefit from each proposal. The board shall attempt to balance its investments, as nearly as is practicable, among the geographic regions of the state.
(b) Any faculty or students of a public or private institution of higher education in the state may present for the board's consideration proposals relating to innovative projects or investment opportunities.
(c) An annual audit shall be conducted by an independent firm of certified public accountants and shall be made available to the Legislature annually.
(d) The board shall forward to the West Virginia housing development fund for its review and information approved investment packages containing information as is necessary to permit the West Virginia housing development fund to carry out its duties under this article. The board shall determine whether each applicant is an eligible business.