NetWork Kansas just added one more reason to start or expand a business in Augusta. 


Due to the work of Augusta Progress Inc., and the donation of tax credits by Augusta residents, API will have more than $150,000 available to loan to businesses looking to growing or new businesses in Augusta.


 

 


NetWork Kansas just added one more reason to start or expand a business in Augusta. 

Due to the work of Augusta Progress Inc., and the donation of tax credits by Augusta residents, API will have more than $150,000 available to loan to businesses looking to growing or new businesses in Augusta.

API Board President Trent Schell said these "e-community" loans would be important to businesses that have used other financing methods with collateralized loans from financial institutions. When those funds are exhausted, API would be able to step in and offer non-collateralized loans to help add jobs to the local economy.

For example, if a small business was hoping to relocate in Augusta, they could receive funding to buy land and build a building but still need a little more capital to get up and running. API could offer this company a low interest loan the help make moving to Augusta possible.

"(This grant) represents only an initial step in making this program successful," Schell said.  "Over the coming years API and our members will be responsible for finding entrepreneurial talent in our community and getting them the resources they will need to achieve their goals.  This grant will be a significant 'tool in our toolbox' to assist those endeavors."

The following communities will share $775,000 in tax credits from NetWork Kansas, enabling them to raise more than $1 million in seed funding for entrepreneurs in their respective communities: Augusta; Bird City; Chase County; Kiowa County; Linn County; Marion; and Woodson County.

Augusta Mayor Kristey Williams, who will serve as the E-Community Liason, said one of the benefits is the lack of red tape prospective businesses have to cut through since the money is locally controlled through API.

"The decisions are made locally by the API board," Williams said. "That will simplify the application process."

Each E-Community benefits from an injection of capital raised locally through the NetWork Kansas Entrepreneurship Tax Credit Program to help start and grow businesses in rural Kansas communities. The first six E-Community partners were granted more than $1 million in tax credits, which they used to raise $1.6 million in funding in 2007.

"We're very excited by the progress our six pilot communities have already made," said Erik Pedersen, NetWork Kansas Operations Manager. "They have committed funding to six businesses in a relatively short amount of time. The lessons we have learned together will help expedite the process of providing capital to entrepreneurs in these new communities."

Each E-Community partners with NetWork Kansas to achieve the following results: 1) Through a tax credit grant, communities establish a fund for entrepreneurs and small business owners that is administered at the local level; 2) Each community identifies local, regional and state assets available to assist entrepreneurs and businesses; 3) Each community establishes a long-term tracking and accountability system to measure business and economic growth; and 4) A long-term partnership with 448 NetWork Kansas resource partners statewide provides assistance to entrepreneurs and small businesses.

"Several individuals deserve special recognition for their efforts and countless hours spent in meetings, completing the application and pushing this project to completion," Schell said. "Please take time in the next couple of weeks to give a special 'Thank You' to Sharon Sudduth at the Chamber of Commerce and Kristey Williams, Mayor of Augusta.  Other great supporters of this project are: Dave Bisagno, Dalton Patterson, Willis Wilson, Bill Eberhardt, Eric Christinat, and the rest of the API board."

For more information about the NetWork Kansas E- Community partnership or the Entrepreneurship Tax Credit, visit www.networkkansas.com, or call 877-521-8600. NetWork Kansas was established as a component of the Kansas Economic Growth Act of 2004 to further entrepreneurship and small business growth as a priority for economic and community development in the State of Kansas. Backed by 448 partners statewide, the NetWork Kansas service promotes an entrepreneurial environment by connecting entrepreneurs and small business owners with the expertise, education and economic resources they need in order to succeed.?