GCEDC receives $70,000 Rural Business Enterprise Grant

Friday, September 17, 2010
Submitted photo Officials and donors who partnered to make a $70,000 Rural Business Enterprise Grant (RBEG) to spur Greene County's business growth are (front, from left) Deb Boudreau, Area Specialist USDA Rural Development; Joan Bethell, Executive Director Greene County Economic Development Corporation; Phil Lehmkuhler, State Director USDA Rural Development; Chuck Martindale, Hoosier Energy; and (back, from left) Nick Skinner, Farmers & Mechanics Federal Savings and Loan; Bryan Myers, Crane Federal Credit Union; Brian Sparks, CEO of Utilities District of Western Indiana REMC; Ed Cullison, Farmers & Mechanics Federal Savings and Loan and Mark Robinson, MainSource Bank.

United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) Rural Development State Director Phil Lehmkuhler presented the Greene County Economic Development Corporation (GCEDC) Director and local donors a Certificate of Partnership during a grant award ceremony Thursday afternoon in Linton.

Lehmkuhler announced that GCEDC is receiving a $70,000 Rural Business Enterprise Grant (RBEG) to spur Greene County's business growth.

"Our mission is to increase economic opportunity and improve the quality of life for all rural Americans. Ensuring that rural small businesses have access to capital is one of the most effective ways to help create jobs and keep folks living in their community. This grant will help finance new, and strengthen existing businesses in Greene County," Lehmkuhler stated.

The partnership between Rural Development and GCEDC will establish a Revolving Loan Fund in the amount of $80,000.

GCEDC director Joan Bethell said donations from local partners helped provide the local match for the grant.

"Greene County Economic Development Corporation was able to reach their match with help of four generous donors -- Crane Federal Credit Union, Farmers and Mechanics Federal Federal Savings and Loan, MainSource Bank, and UDWI/REMC. With the funding, Greene County should anticipate about eight-to-20 jobs to be created," she said in a prepared news release. RBEG funds can be used for start-up and working capital loans, building and plant renovations, transportation improvements, project planning and other business needs.

Additional information on the RBEG program may be found at http://www.rurdev.usda.gov/rbs/busp/rbeg.htm .

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  • This should be just enough to open up another office for one of the "local" contractors for Crane, which in turn will not see me being employed within the county. What is it that the GCEDC actually does other than occupy an office space and not have the ability to attract any outside businesses to the area? I don't see much of a positive impact on the county from this group that really amounts to the creation of jobs. What I do see is an aging community that refuses to work together for the sole purpose of retaining talented people and creating employment for young people as an incentive to remain close to home instead of fleeing after they receive an education. A wise man once told me, "You know what the single biggest export of Greene County is...brains!".

    -- Posted by springer on Fri, Sep 17, 2010, at 12:02 PM
  • why it is going to be used for the purpose of telling us how we are idiots for not having zoning. If you ask miss bethell, that is the only reason we cannot atract jobs.

    -- Posted by jtk2001 on Fri, Sep 17, 2010, at 12:10 PM
  • Why would a business want to locate in this county when there are no decent routes through the county? We need a few state highways in this county to be upgraded like 67 between Bicknell and Vincennes where it splits to 4 lanes in a couple places.

    I69 is only going to help this problem near the interchanges, and I'm not even going to mention the county roads.

    There's also this problem of not having enough skilled jobs in the area, so the skilled labor force moves away. Then no skilled jobs want to move in because we don't have the labor force.

    -- Posted by cgarwood on Fri, Sep 17, 2010, at 12:54 PM
  • When the larger cities(with interstates) are having trouble attracting manufacturing and/or deterring outsourcing to other countries, it tells me that we have a fundamental problem with the whole broader system and not just locally. Any small town exceptions? I'd like to know... And how.

    -- Posted by SHS95 on Fri, Sep 17, 2010, at 2:53 PM
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