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GFDA Top 25 for November 2 2014

Here's the GFDA Top 25 for this week, celebrating great things happening to move Great Falls Forward!
1) The Darkhorse Wine Snug and the Darkhorse Hall opened under the Celtic Cowboy Pub and Restaurant in downtown Great Falls.
2) The Great Falls Homebuilders Association went live with the new Great Falls Relocation website they developed to help all of us attract talent to our market! Check out
3) We continued work on several high priority deals including 4 manufacturing, 2 distribution and 1 energy production.
4) Submitted our first EB-5 financing proposal for a large manufacturing prospect.
5) Worked with an area health care service industry business on their growth plans, including management of invoicing and accounts receivables. Reached out to a local manufacturer to listen about the company's current operations, challenges and opportunities in domestic and foreign markets.
6) Worked with a local business to develop a Capability Statement for marketing to federal agencies. Assisted a local business to resolve Federal Database incorrect information so the company could receive contract payments.
7) Hosted a Contracting with the State workshop for businesses in the Great Falls trade area. Business owners learned tips for winning state contracts, government procurement techniques, resident preferences and other resources. For more information about our free Procurement Technical Assistance Center (PTAC) services, contact Lillian Sunwall at or 1-406-771-9024.
8) Networked with corporate real estate executives and site selection consultants at the CoreNet Global North American Summit and CoreNet's exclusive Senior Leader of Corporate Real Estate Forum in Washington, DC.
9) Networked with federal agency officials at the Investing in Manufacturing Community Partnerships Summit in DC and tried to explain what's holding back greater economic growth and investment in Montana.
10) Networked with site selection consultants at the Women in Economic Development Site Selector Forum in Chicago. Thanked the site selector who worked on the new Miller Coors facility in Power.
11) Networked with industry leaders and state officials at the Montana Economic Developers Association fall conference in Helena.
12) Issued an RFP to find an agri-processing industry consultant to help us develop market-driven business cases to present to food, nutraceutical and related manufacturers as part of our efforts to grow and diversify our region's world-class processing industry. The full RFP is available on our website or from Rebecca Engum at or 1-406-771-9032. Responses are due by 4:00 PM on November 21st. The work is being funded by the U.S. Economic Development Administration with match provided by GFDA Investors.
13) Took part in Consultant Connect's Anatomy of a Deal webinar with four site selection consultants who shared ideas on how to promote smaller metro areas to site selection professionals, how to submit more competitive response to RFI's issued by consultants and new tools to keep making the cut and stay in competition for expansion and attraction deals. We renewed our contract with Consultant Connect for 2015 using GFDA Investor funds.
14) Great Falls College MSU offered a one week welding supervisor training in partnership with the Canadian Welding Board, putting Great Falls on the map as one of the very few locations in the U.S. offering this advanced training. GFC MSU was the first college in the country to offer dual U.S. and Canadian welder certification. More info in Tribune story here.
15) Great Falls College MSU became the first sponsor of the Labor Demand Study we would like to commission to survey Great Falls area employers and compile data on hard to fill positions. We only need $4,000 more in sponsorships. If you would like to sponsor this important effort, contact Jolene Bach at or 1-406-750-4481.
16) The City Design Review Board approved site plan changes for the East End Retail Center that will anchor the east end of 10th Avenue South at 57th Street.
17) Our local NBC affiliate KBGF went digital. Welcome to the 21st century.
18) Held the kick-off meeting for a Targeted Brownfields Assessment (TBA) for the Rocky Mountain Building in downtown Great Falls with the EPA, Montana DEQ and the project developers.
19) Congratulations to this year's Athena award winner, Judy Erickson, and Thank You for your tremendous lifetime of volunteer work in our community!
20) Downtown Great Falls volunteers gave 6,885 hours of service in the third quarter of 2014. Building permits document an amazing 31 downtown property renovations started during the quarter!
21) Cascade County Commissioners are seeking volunteers to apply to serve on the Planning Board, Zoning Board of Adjustments, and Airport Authority Board. Applications are available at (click on "Boards") or in person at the County Commission office. Applications are due by December 1st.
22) If you know a budding entrepreneur, tell them about Start-Up Spark!, GFDA's opportunity for entrepreneurs to meet each other and further develop their ideas with the guidance of our small business coach. Our next Start-Up Spark! will be this Wednesday, November 5th, noon at GFDA, 300 Central Avenue, Suite 406 (the downtown GF US Bank Building). For more info and to learn about all our business strategy services, contact Jason Nitschke at or 1-406-771-9022.
23) This Friday, November 7th, we invite GFDA Investors to join us for our monthly Development Coffee. Centene Corporation is hosting this month's coffee at 7:00 AM. Please RSVP to Jolene at
24) A one-time only free Small Business Workshop will be offered in Great Falls on November 21st by the Native American Development Corporation in partnership with the Procurement Technical Assistance Center, SBA, Montana Small Business Development Center and Disadvantaged Business Enterprise. Register at
25) Montana held its ranking as having the 6th best State Business Tax Climate in the Tax Foundation's 2015 index released this week. The 5 states that ranked better are Wyoming, South Dakota, Nevada, Alaska and Florida. We rank ahead of neighboring states Utah (9th), Idaho (19th) and North Dakota (25th). We even beat Texas ranked 10th! Within the overall ranking, Montana placed 3rd for sales tax, 8th for property tax, 18th for corporate tax, 18th for unemployment insurance tax and 20th for individual income tax.
Congratulations to Mark Macek of Macek Companies who will serve as 2015 President of CCIM, the global leading organization in commercial and investment real estate education and services! A team of Great Falls real estate leaders recently travelled to Los Angeles to participate in Mark's induction as incoming President.
Congratulations to the GFHS Delphian Choir on winning 2nd place in the national competition held by the American Choir Directors Association!
Congratulations to the CMR Girls Soccer Team on winning the state championship!
A long Top 10 this week with lots of exciting work happening to keep moving Great Falls forward! Keep it up TEAM GREAT FALLS and Untame your entrepreneurial spirit!


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300 Central Ave. Suite 406
Great Falls, MT 59401
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Great Falls, MT 59403