Business Assistance

Historic Facade Restoration Program

Copper Nail2Since 2006 the DDA Board has offered a façade improvement loan program for the revival of historic facades on the buildings of downtown. Focused on bringing back the historic architecture of the late 1800’s and early 1900’s, the program was centered around a 50-50 share in the expense of restoring a façade.

That’s 1 dollar for every dollar that the property owner puts into façade restoration and renewal. Those loans are largely low interest deferred loans to the property owner to assure that the façade restoration approved by the board would stay in place for the term of the note. In most cases that represented a 5-year term. For every year that the restored façade maintained the loan would be forgiven over that 5-year term at 20 percent per year.

While the program was intended to expire in 2008, the Board took another look at it since few opportunities were taken to use the program. On the other hand, the economic downturn put the hurt on every business in the country and improvements gave way to shear survival from 2007 through 2009 and now into 2010. Subsequently, the Board has reviewed the program and continued it each year through this year.

Currently, the Board is actually reviewing the program to provide further incentive improvement, again, focused on historic improvement, but the possibility for enhancing any façade grows to the extent that the Board is looking at changing the program to reflect upon the upturn and take advantage of any improvements. Subsequently, the Board is reviewing the program to change the terms to reflect 2 dollars for every dollar invested in historic restoration with simple improvements to upgrade facades would remain at 1 dollar for every dollar invested.

The program would still require the implementation of a lien on the property to assure the DDA’s investment along with a mortgage note on the deferred loan. The application form is listed below as well as the program details. Business owners are encouraged to click on either to review the process and contact the executive director for any questions that may arise.

The façade program is just one of the programs the DDA Board has presented to downtown businesses. As it looks at further incentives, a revolving loan fund for example, check back occasionally or click on one of the associate links below.


Community Financial Organizations

Conventional lending sources throughout the area include several area banks, credit unions or other organizations. Listed below are the local area establishments in the Grass Lake community.

American 1 Credit Union
670 E. Michigan Ave.
Grass Lake, MI. 49240
www.american1cu.org

Comerica Bank
115 E. Michigan
Grass Lake, MI 49240
www.comerica.com

Farmers State Bank
12005 E. Michigan Ave.
Grass Lake, MI 49240
www.farmerstatebank.com


Other Business Assistance Organizations

There are a host of organizations out there who’s sole purpose is to assist you in enhancing your business potential and expand that potential to even global parameters. Listed below is a brief description of some of those organizations along with their contact numbers and website links. Don’t hesitate to contact any of these agencies for assistance in starting, growing and enhancing your business.


The Enterprise Group

The Enterprise Group of Jackson is the organization charged with economic development throughout the county. They can assist you in locating property, retaining employees and their training, advance development of your business, provide additional loan assistance, and many other possible routes to building your business enterprise. Retail, commercial, industrial or entrepreneurial, The Enterprise Group can get you started in the right direction or direct you to the proper agency.

The Enterprise Group
One Jackson Square, Suite 1100
Jackson, MI 49201
517-788-4455
www.enterprisegroup.org


The Small Business Administration

The Small Business Administration directs and handles many Federal Government programs including SB 504 & 7 A loans for small businesses to assist in the purchase of property, inventory and equipment. The loans are backed by government guarantees to local area lenders to fill the gap between a conventional loan, and your own equity in the business. A good source for assistance in gaining operational capital for your business, contact the Small Business Administration to see how they may be a major help to advancing your business.

Small Business Administration
Michigan District
477 Michigan Avenue
Suite 515, McNamara Bldg.
Detroit, MI 48226
313-226-6075
www.sba.gov


The Michigan Small Business Development Center (MI-SBDC)

The Michigan Small Business Development Center enhances Michigan’s economic well-being by providing counseling, training, research and advocacy for new ventures, existing small businesses and innovative technology companies. With offices statewide, the MI-SBDC positively impacts the economy by strengthening existing companies, creating new jobs, retaining existing jobs, and assisting companies in defining their path to success.

Michigan Small Business Development Center
Greater Washtenaw Region - Jackson, Lenawee & Hillsdale
141 S. Jackson St.
Jackson, MI  49201
517-782-8221
www.sbdcmichigan.


South Central Michigan Works

South Central Michigan Works brings together public and private sector groups in a three county area, including Jackson County, to help employers recruit, develop, and keep skilled workers. They also assist students and jobseekers in building their skills and connect them to quality jobs. South Central Michigan Works develops and sustains prosperity based on strong employers with a supply of competent and skilled workers.

South Central Michigan Works
310 W. Bacon Street
Hillsdale, MI 49242
888-649-6757
www.scmw.org

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