We can help lower your financial burden! In addition to low interest loans available, the State of Montana also offers grant programs for Business Development and Workforce Training. As grants these funds do not have to be repaid by the business recipient who is creating or training workers for new jobs in Montana.
This state-funded grant program was supported by Governor Schweitzer and was passed in the 2005 legislative session creating the "Big Sky Economic Development Trust Fund" program that provides grant dollars to local or tribal governments that can be used to assist businesses that create new jobs in Montana. This program will provide funding to local or tribal governments that can use the funds to assist a business with the purchase of land, building or equipment, lease rate reduction for lease of public or privately owned real property for the direct use of the assisted business, relocations costs incurred in connection with moving the assisted businessís physical assets to Montana, or employee training. Funding may not exceed $5,000 for each eligible new job created; $7,500 for each eligible new job created in a high-poverty county. Eligible jobs are full time and meet or exceed the current average weekly wage of the county in which the employees are to be principally employed. Program funding is also available to assist with the completion of project development activities such as Preliminary Engineering Reports, Preliminary Architectural Reports, feasibility studies and business plans.
In Montana we also understand the importance and the cost that workforce training represents to new and expanding companies. Montana utilizes multiple funding sources to make workforce training grants to help companies with their training costs. Much of our workforce training dollars go toward new worker training, but some funds are available for incumbent worker training.
The Montana Department of Commerce manages a state funded workforce training program. The match requirement is one dollar of private funds for every three dollars of state workforce grant funds. The ceiling is $5,000 and the maximum award amount depends on the number of jobs to be trained and availability of funding. The minimum compensation for an eligible employee varies by county but should be in the $12.60 per hour with benefits range. The business can apply directly to the Department of Commerce when funding is available. The application would include financial information, a business plan, and a detailed hiring and training plan. The amount of funding available is about $1.3 million annually.
Grant funding for employee training is available for new and expanding businesses of approximately up to $370,000 per business. Some projects involving significant levels of hiring may be able to apply through a city and county and double the amount available. The maximum grant amount to a for-profit business or non-profit organization for each employee trained is $5,000. To be eligible an employee must be full-time and receive a minimum of $12.60 per hour compensation including benefits after training. A 1:1 match is required, which can include costs associated with expanding or locating and establishing a business in Montana. The funding decision will be based on the level of benefit and impact to low and moderate income individuals which include: the type and quality of jobs created; the kind of training offered; opportunities for advancement, and job benefits. The applicant submits the application through a local government to the Department of Commerce. The application would include financial information, a business plan, and a detailed hiring and training plan. Billings, Missoula, and Great Falls are not eligible applicants because they receive funding directly from the federal government. The contact for this program is Karyl Tobel at 406-841-2733.
This program has similar requirements to the state work force training grant program with a 1:1 match and a $5,000 per employee maximum. The current minimum compensation for an eligible employee is $13.39 per hour including benefits, however this is subject to change. The minimum wage and benefit amount is changed annually in July and represents 110% of the state median wage. The maximum grant amount depends on availability of funding and the level of requests received when funding is available. Businesses can apply directly to the Montana Department of Commerce when funding is available. The application would include financial information, a business plan, and a detailed hiring and training plan.
You can find grants and loans to finance your infrastructure needs through a variety of state agencies, including: the Montana Department of Agriculture, Montana Department of Transportation, Montana Department of Commerce, and much more. Please visit the one stop shop for your infrastructure financing needs.
The Montana Board of Investments works to provide creative solutions to financial issues facing new and expanding businesses in the state of Montana. To accomplish this goal, the Board administers a number of different loan programs that can be specifically tailored to meet an individual business's or local government's needs.
The Montana Board of Research and Commercialization Technology was created by the 1999 Montana Legislature to provide a predictable and stable source of funding for research and commercialization projects to be conducted at research and commercialization centers in Montana. The purpose of the program is to encourage economic development through investment in research projects that have a clear path to commercialization.
The Board takes the following criteria into account when making funding decisions:
Contact: Dave Desch, Executive Director 841-2760
In addition to state grant programs, federal grant funding can also be obtained through the U.S. Department of Commerce Economic Development Agency and USDA Rural Development for business development purposes in Montana. Local development organizations throughout Montana are very knowledgeable of these federal programs.