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Revolving business loan fund passes in Mayville

November 14, 2018

Businesses in Mayville will have a new way to get a jump start after an initiative approved by city leaders Monday night.

The Mayville Common Council voted to launch a revolving loan fund program, a concept that Mayor Rob Boelk campaigned on during the spring election. The fund will provide businesses with a loan and be replenished as the loans are paid back with interest.

The idea is that businesses can use the loans to expand and take care of projects they may need. The money “revolves” from business to business and loans are paid back like any other.

The concept was approved unanimously, with council member Molly Henkel absent.

The fund will initially start with $150,000 out of the city’s “rainy day” reserve fund. Businesses can receive up to $40,000 in matching funds from the city with an equal amount guaranteed in a loan from a local bank, for up to $80,000. Loans will be paid back at 2 percent interest. Approval will pass through a committee and come to the Common Council for a final decision.

“It’ll be work-in-progress for a while, I’m sure,” council member Bob Smith said.

Boelk said the program will be built up as it continues, like the city’s downtown facade program. The program proposal has been before the Common Council previously, but did not pass until now.

Dodge County itself has a revolving loan fund that was established in the early 1990s with a $315,000 government grant that has grown to over $1.5 million, and works in a similar way as businesses in the area match county funds with private investment. One significant business in downtown Mayville that received money from the county is the Audubon Inn.

However, the county’s program has been on hold as officials anticipate major changes from the Wisconsin Department of Administration and the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development in the way it operates.

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