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GFDA Top 15 For The Week

It's been a busy week so here's the GFDA Top 15:
1) Hosted advanced manufacturing prospect visit. Company has shortlisted Great Falls for an expansion that would start January 1.
2) Brand consultants spent week in Great Falls doing research through focus groups and one on one interviews.
3) Site selection consultant Garner Economics released its annual report on U.S. Metros Average Hourly Earnings, ranking Great Falls 39th out of all 372 metro areas for increase in private industry average annual hourly earnings from 2010 to 2011. Our earnings grew 4.0% in one year after adjustment for inflation. Amongst our 12 benchmark cities, we came in third behind Casper and Billings. Missoula was 4th with a 0.7% increase and Idaho Falls last with a drop of 14.4%.
4) BNSF gave preliminary approval to rail plans for the Great Falls AgriTech Park. Stelling Engineers completed the Storm Water Report for the Park.
5) Closed a $70,000 Downtown Loan Fund to help finance creation of new apartments above Subway in downtown Great Falls.
6) Great Falls City Commission approved trade of Yaw Kinney building for Pacific Steel & Recycling's new corporate headquarters and training center. Commission also approved industrial rezoning for Crescent Drive and parcelling of the former Buttrey warehouse to facilitate new business development.
7) Loan Committee approved a $170,000 loan participation to support a business in Choteau.
8) High Plains Finance Board approved a $72,000 loan for a business start-up in Cut Bank.
9) Great Falls Planning Department published the draft Downtown Master Plan, the first ever for the City.
10) Great Falls International Airport announced plans for significant upgrades to its terminal to improve competitiveness in attracting passengers.
11) GFDA Board approved a $1 million application to the Community Development Financial Institution Fund as part of an effort to increase loan capital to support new and growing businesses and redevelopment.
12) GFDA Board reappointed Loan Committee members Scott Blumfield of Dahlquist Realtors, Bob Butcher of US Bank, Tim Culliton of Pacific Steel & Recycling, Dan Majerus of Stockman Bank, Mark Mehta of Mehta Properties, Sheila Rice of NeighborWorks Great Falls, Chad Simonson of First Interstate Bank and Wendy Thomas of the City of Great Falls. Teri Anderson of Mountain West Bank was appointed as a new member.
13) GFDA Board also discussed industry sectors driving growth in Great Falls, including agri-processing, energy, entrepreneurship, institutional, trade service center and tourism.
14) Two team members participated in the annual Association of Small Business Development Centers conference.
15) Received clean audit of our Procurement Technical Assistance Center.


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