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GFDA Top 14 1/26/15

Here's the GFDA Top 14 for this week, celebrating great things happening to move Great Falls Forward!
1) Higher education completions by residents in the Great Falls metro area increased by 82% from 2003-2013, compared to a state increase of 27% and a national increase of 44%, according to EMSI data!
2) Montana State Small Business Credit Initiative (SSBCI) impact data was released this week by the Montana Department of Commerce. GFDA's SSBCI loans enabled employers to create 438 jobs, more than two times any other lender in the state. Our loans led to 42% of the total job creation statewide, using 15% of the statewide loan funds.
3) Met with a local manufacturing company evaluating options for its next growth stages. Visited with an area business about marketing methods to increase sales, and develop specific plans for implementation.
4) A BIG shout out to Rural Dynamics, Inc., The James Company, Great Falls College MSU, the United Way of Cascade County, and US Bank for stepping up to sponsor a Workforce Demand Study that we will soon commission to identify the hardest to fill positions and workforce skills in the Great Falls metro area. The results will help area employers, education, and training entities to develop new recruitment and workforce development programs to enable continued growth.
5) GFDA was certified this week as a Community Development Entity (CDE) by the Community Development Financial Institution Fund of the U.S. Treasury. This enables us to facilitate New Markets Tax Credit (NMTC) transactions. Networked at the national NMTC conference and worked on securing tax credit allocations for two important downtown projects. We have a mapping tool that can quickly confirm whether your project site is eligible for NMTC. For more information, contact me at
6) The City Commission approved rezoning to allow for a new 12 unit apartment building to be constructed on the east side of town.
7) Testified before state legislative committees about key economic and agricultural development programs critical to our continued success to help business startups, expansions and attractions.
8) Signed a contract with GIS Planning to add the nation's leading online economic development geographic information data and mapping system to our new website that we plan to launch this spring. The data will be valuable for our startup and expansion clients throughout the region, and make us more competitive in online business attraction searches.
9) January's SBA 504 rates are low! The 20 year fixed rate is 4.601% and the 10 year fixed rate is 4.37%. Contact Jennifer Rogers to learn how our SBA 504 loans can let you finance business real estate and equipment purchases, renovation and construction with as little as 10% down; or 1-406-350-1204.
10) Nominations for the 2015 The Fire Within awards close this Friday, January 30th at 5:00 PM. To submit your nomination for the Inspire or Aspire awards, or to request a nomination form, contact Jason Nitschke at Mark your calendar for this year's best-ever event celebrating women entrepreneurs on March 26!
11) We have a great job opening for a new position of Lending & Marketing Associate at GFDA. If you have loan processing experience, fantastic attention to detail, and/or excellent computer skills, and want to work in a flex workplace with a fun, dynamic, fast-paced, and passionate team, send your resume and cover letter to Brett Doney at GFDA is an Equal Opportunity Employer. We'll be posting a job notice later this week.
12) Employers! Register to find great employees at the Great Falls Community Job Fair that will be held on March 24th at the Montana Expo Park Exhibition Hall 12 to 5 PM (early entry at 11:30 AM for Guard and Reserve members, military spouses, active duty military, and veterans). Contact Barbara Hardy at or 1-406-791-5816.
13) The Montana Department of Revenue has a new way for businesses to file their withholding taxes online, using its new TAP File Upload application. More info at
14) RSVP today for events this Friday and Saturday to learn more about efforts to create a National Heritage Area that includes Great Falls. President Reagan created this program in 1984 and now there are 49 National Heritage Areas, all created by local communities who petitioned Congress. A 2013 study estimated that economic activity in these areas rivals the economic activity of Starbucks -- $12 billion/year. Now, that got my attention! Montana and the entire Northwest have missed out on this opportunity to boost tourism spending, though Utah and North Dakota have benefited from National Heritage Areas. Both events are in the Missouri Room of the Civic Center, Friday January 30th at 6:30 PM and Saturday January 31st at 8:30 AM. Call 1-406-455-8414 TODAY to register for free.
Congratulations to the United Way of Cascade County team for topping its donation record for the 6th year in a row! Thank You for everything you do for the Great Falls community!
Untame your entrepreneurial spirit!


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Physical Address
300 Central Ave. Suite 406
Great Falls, MT 59401
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PO Box 949
Great Falls, MT 59403