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Top 12 for the week of Aug 10th

1) GFDA won a $1,016,101 grant from the Community Development Financial Institution Fund! The grant will be used to create a new loan fund that will enable us to support developers and non-profit organizations with gap financing for commercial and mixed use development projects. We're going to work with our bank partners and foundations to try to leverage the grant into a $3 million loan fund. We used local public and private investor money you invested in us in 2010 and 2011 to match this grant dollar for dollar. Every local investor dollar we get is so important because we leverage it at least 1:1. Thank you for making this new fund possible!
2) The City Commission unanimously approved the preliminary plat for the Great Falls AgriTech Park! We gave a presentation to the Commission to begin work on creating a tax increment financing district for the Park. Next steps are to go before the Planning Board again on August 28th and the City Commission on September 4th. Your support through this process has been tremendous!
3) The state approved a $125,575 low interest loan participation we're doing with Mountain West Bank to support the expansion of Montana School Equipment in Great Falls.
4) The National Association of Development Organizations notified us this week that GFDA has won two Innovation Awards for the Montana Eggs expansion and the West Bank Development. These projects were true public/private partnerships. Congratulations to all involved!
5) Our marketing team worked on our exhibit for the Oil Sands Show in Ft. McMurray and a new retail flyer for the International Council of Shopping Centers Western Division event this September.
6) We met with a Dept. of Energy consultant team that visisted Great Falls this week in regard to a major proposed project in Great Falls.
7) The City Commission approved the sale of two City-owned economic development properties, a lot in the City's Med-Tech Park to Optimum for a new facility and a lot on the corner of River Drive and 38th Street North to Erik Sletten. It's great to see these properties get onto the property tax rolls and into development!
8) Naturener's Rim Rock wind farm will be energized by the end of the year. The 189 MW project has created 300 construction jobs at peak and is projected to create 20 permanent jobs, $1.5 million a year in royalty payments to property owners, $1.6 million a year in property taxes and enough electricity for 60,000 US households!
9) The City kicked off the update of the City Growth Policy. Please take a few minutes to complete an online survey so your voice is heard. The link is on the City's homepage
10) Our strategy team worked with a client interested in starting to compete for federal contracts and with a business wanting to improve its staff hiring, training and efficiency.
11) We joined Great Falls tourism promotion organizations to meet with Senator Baucus' trade staff to work on plans for a Montana tourism trade mission to Alberta. It's great to see all the local tourism groups working so well together!
12) The University of Montana's Bureau of Business and Economic Research (BBER) increased its projection for growth of Cascade County Nonfarm Earnings in 2012 from 1.8% projected in January to 2.7%. The BBER also estimated that a single 20 million ton/year Montana coal mine would generate $91.6 million a year in public revenue; $50.8 million to the state, $23.3 million to host counties and $17.5 million to the School Trust Fund.

Congratulations to the Montana Air National Guard on its 65th anniversary protecting our country and serving Montana! You make us proud!!!

Congratulations to the McLaughlin Research Institute for earning the highest 4 Stars rating from Charity Navigator for the second consecutive year!

Congratulations to the downtown Business Improvement District and the Tourism Business Improvement District for unanimous City Commission approval of their work plans and budgets without anyone speaking in opposition. Both organizations are doing great work for Great Falls!

Another big week for Great Falls! Let's keep things moving FORWARD!


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Great Falls, MT 59401
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Great Falls, MT 59403