Development partnership details use of $99,000 USDA grant
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[September 03, 2010]
Lincoln & Logan County Development Partnership submitted an
application for a $99,000 Rural Business Enterprise Grant to the
United States Department of Agriculture in May for the purpose of
creating a business incubator. Wednesday, it was announced that
Logan County was the only community in the state of Illinois to
receive full funding.
Each state was allowed to submit two projects for funding,
although Logan County's project was the only Illinois project
selected for funding. Logan County will be given up to three years
to purchase and renovate a building to develop a business incubator
geared at housing startup businesses.
This will be Logan County's first centralized business incubator.
It will be a home to new businesses, which will be able to enter the
incubator for up to three years. The incubator will have shared
services such as copiers, faxes and utilities. The lease is also
reduced for the three years by 50 percent for the first year, 30
percent for the second year and 10 percent for the third year.
National statistics show that startup businesses that enter a
business incubator program succeed at a 70 percent rate. Business
startups that do not go through a formal program have a 70 percent
failure rate during the first five years.
All businesses that enter the Logan County business incubator
will need to participate in the SCORE program that was set up in
Logan County in November 2009. SCORE is the Small Business
Administration program that provides free business counseling and
assists in setting up business plans and budgets.
The business incubator was identified in the Lincoln & Logan
County Development Partnership's Five-Year Strategy as a key
priority and will be included as part of the Economic Development
Master Plan, which is being developed by Vandewalle and Associates
and will be shown to the public on Sept. 30 from 6 to 8 p.m. in
Restoration Hall at Lincoln Christian University.
Joel A. Smiley, executive director of the Lincoln & Logan County
Development Partnership, said: "The business incubator will be the
cornerstone of the programs the partnership has introduced to
attracting new business to Logan County. The business incubator will
reduce the costs of starting a business, giving an edge to companies
to survive during the first three years of operation."
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Other area and community leaders commented:
Congressman Aaron Schock, District 18, said: "I'm very grateful
for this funding that was awarded to the Lincoln & Logan Development
Partnership through this highly competitive process. As a member of
the Small Business Committee, I know that seven out of 10 new jobs
are created by small businesses, and this incubator will generate 50
full-time employees, which is great for Logan County."
Lincoln Mayor Keith Snyder said: "I am pleased that the
partnership received this grant. The city of Lincoln is excited that
The Center of Success will have a permanent home in our community.
Giving entrepreneurs the support they need to pursue their dreams
and ideas and, ultimately to succeed, is a vital component to our
Logan County Board member Bill Martin said: "This just solidifies
the future of the business incubator in Logan County."
The Lincoln & Logan County Development Partnership is the
economic development agency for Logan County, serving businesses,
government and residents of Logan County. The partnership's mission
is to enhance the economic prosperity and quality of life in Logan
[Text from file received from
Lincoln & Logan County