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Top 15 for 1/17/2016

Here's the GFDA Top 15 for this week, celebrating great things happening to move Great Falls Forward.


1) Worked on several potential industrial expansions, startups and attractions. Started work on a new large industrial lead. Projects are starting to go out to bid for spring construction!

2) EPA approved our first brownfield assessment project, the West Bank Two riverfront redevelopment in the West Bank Urban Renewal Area.

3) The Port of Northern Montana Multimodal Hub Center in Shelby is a 120-acre facility that offers a 27-acre laydown area, eight 5-acre lots with rail access, ten 5-acre lots with truck-to-rail access, a 12,000 SF rail-side warehouse with cross dock, and many other features. Click here for a flyer describing the Center.

4) Worked with a number of clients on their financing needs, including a business expansion, a start-up, a business purchase, and two new construction projects. To find out if your project qualifies for financing through us, please contact Jennifer Rogers at 1-406-350-1204 or

5) Networked with businesses at the MT Chamber Business Days and Manufacturing Council meetings in Helena.

6) Began working with a new client on a Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) grant application. Worked with a long-term client on its 2016 marketing plan. To request GFDA's no-cost counseling services, contact Jason Nitschke at

7) In the mid 1980's Great Falls and Billings were the same size. In 1988 Yellowstone County began investing in strategic economic development through an economic development specific mil levy. 25 years later they are still investing and are double the size of Great Falls. This week we met with Big Sky EDA and Yellowstone County Commissioners to discuss the pros and cons of leveraging private investment with public funding.

8) Spoke at the Wheat and Barley Commission meeting in Bozeman. Shared information regarding GFDA's focus on growing the value added Agri-Processing industry. If you're interested in seeing one of our Agri-Processing business cases, contact Jolene Schalper at 1-406-750-4481.

9) We opened nominations for The Fire Within Inspire and Aspire Awards recognizing outstanding female entrepreneurs. Download the Nomination Form to nominate great candidates. Mark you calendar for The 2016 Fire Within presented by Embark Credit Union on March 31st at 6 PM. More details soon!

10) Worked with a local business on a potential Montana Board of Investments loan. The MBOI has some great programs that can assist businesses with infrastructure and equipment costs. To see if your project or idea is a good fit, contact Jolene Schalper at 1-406-750-4481.

11) Submitted a Community Development Block Grant application to the City of Great Falls to seek more loan capital to keep pace with growing gap and bridge financing needs of local entrepreneurs.

12) SBA 504 rates for January are 4.831% for a 20 year loan and 4.288% for a 10 year loan. These rates are fixed for the life of the loan.  SBA 504 loans can be used for fixed asset financing. To find out if your project qualifies, please contact Jennifer Rogers at 1-406-350-1204 or 

13) GFDA's Board appointed Scott Patera of Northwestern Energy and Jacquie Burchard of Davidson Companies as Directors until our next investor election. Welcome aboard!

14) Hosted two LaunchPoint workshops, one at the GFDA office and the second online. The next pre-business workshop is scheduled for Wednesday, February 17th from 4-5pm. Register to attend in person or online by contacting Jason Nitschke at

15) The Governor's Office of Economic Development launched a new Montana Business Navigator website portal that offers an easy-to-use environment where Montana's businesses can find the requirements and tools they need to own and operate a business in Montana. The Business Navigator contains a wealth of resources and information organized in a step-by-step process so you can plan, start, operate, and expand your business in Montana.


Untame your entrepreneurial spirit!


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Great Falls, MT 59401
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