For Businesses

TIF/BID Districts

As depicted in the map below, the City currently has 12 open tax increment finance (TIF) districts and three operational Business Improvement Districts (BIDs). The professionally managed BIDs include Downtown Green Bay Inc, Olde Main Street, On Broadway Inc, and Military Avenue Business Association.

In addition to economic development projects like business recruitment and retention, the BIDs organize dozens of functions throughout the year including the Broadway Farmers MarketFridays on the Fox and Gallery Night among many others. The BIDs are also involved in maintaining information about available real estate in their respective districts and charting redevelopment progress.

More information about On Broadway Inc. and Downtown Green Bay Inc./ Olde Main can be found by visiting their websites.

BID HANDBOOK  pdf

Green Bay Business Improvement Districts

  1. Downtown Green Bay  (1997)
  2. Olde Main Street District  (1999)
  3. Broadway District  (2005)
  4. Military Avenue (2014)


Revolving Loan Fund

The City of Green Bay has capitalized the Revolving Loan Fund (RLF) with money from the federal Community Development Block Grant (CDBG) program.   The RLF provides gap financing in the form of loans to businesses when private financial institutions won’t cover the entire amount needed for the project.  Also, this program requires a commitment to create jobs within the city limits.

Eligible Projects

  • Building construction, acquisition, rehabilitation, or expansion.
  • Land acquisition (in conjunction with building purchase or construction).
  • Purchase and installation of machinery and equipment.
  • Working capital

Eligible Businesses

  • Citywide: Manufacturing, wholesale and selected service establishments.
  • Broadway Redevelopment Area: All for-profit establishments.

Loan Requirements

  • A minimum of 51 percent of the full-time equivalent (FTE) jobs created and/or retained must be for persons from low- to moderate- income households as defined by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development guidelines.
  • A maximum of $35,000 CD-RLF dollars may be loaned for each permanent FTE job created up to a maximum loan of $250,000.
  • This program can provide up to 50 percent of the total project cost; and 10 percent of the total project cost must be in the form of equity.
  • Minimum loan amount is $10,000.
  • Working capital loan maximum is $35,000 and have a variable interest rate.  These loans can only be used for direct labor costs or inventory.

Loan Applications

  • Applications are accepted year round.
  • A current Business Plan and applicable financial reports are required.
  • The project must meet federal underwriting guidelines
  • The applicant must demonstrate that the proposed project is viable and that the business will have the capacity to repay the loan
  • A pre-application meeting with EDA staff is required before a loan application is accepted.

Application Process

Contact the city’s Economic Development Department for an initial consultation and application form.

Program Brochure

RLF Brochure 2015

2012 RLF Program Guidelines and Application Instructions


Façade / Demolition Grant

 

Commercial Façade Improvement

Mission ~To promote investment in the Targeted Impact Areas throughout the City of Green Bay by providing a financial incentive for businesses to invest in their property.

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What is the Commercial Facade Grant Program?

The program provides competitive funding to renovate or restore the exterior façade of commercial properties located in Façade Grant Eligible Areas (See Map). The maximum grant available is $5,000 and the minimum grant available is $1,000. Larger projects that exceed $5,000 may be considered for larger grants on a case-by-case basis. Reimbursement shall be limited to no more than 75% of the total cost of eligible improvements. Proof of down payment and no less than 25% of eligible project costs must be secured by applicant prior to approval. Funds will be distributed as a reimbursement after expenses have incurred.

Who is eligible for the program?

Any commercial building owner or tenant (business owner) with lease authority and approval of the owner may apply for Façade Grant funds. The commercial building must be located within a Façade Grant Eligible Area (see map). Project must satisfy a National Objective for Community Development Block Grant Funding as defined by HUD (either job creation or blight elimination). Owner cannot be delinquent on any current City charges, taxes, or assessments or have defaulted on any previous city assistance.

What types of improvements are eligible?

  • Repair/restoration of masonry, brick, wood, and glass
  • Repair/preservation/ restoration of historically significant architectural details
  • Storefront redesign and reconstruction
  • Façade repainting or cleaning
  • Replacement/ Repair of cornices, eaves, etc
  • Entrance modifications
  • Installation/ Repair of signage
  • Installation/ Repair of exterior lighting
  • Murals and permanent art fixtures

What improvements are not eligible?

  • Interior renovations
  • New construction
  • Temporary, portable, or non-permanent improvements
  • Property Acquisition
  • Building Expansion
  • Roofing Repairs
  • Street Furniture, Sidewalks, and other public amenities

Are there design guidelines I must follow?

All projects must be reviewed an receive approval by the Design Review Board prior to allocation of any funds

What other requirements are there?

  • Project must result in visible improvement of overall façade
  • Competitive bidding process by licensed contractors
  • Grantee must agree to maintain the façade for ten years unless the property is sold
  • Projects must begin within 3 months of the grant award
  • Projects must be completed 9 months after the start date
  • Applicants requesting funds of $10,000 or more must use professional design assistance to complete their project

What is the application process?

  1. Meet with Economic Development Staff to discuss your project, review your preliminary designs and discuss timelines
  2. Finalize project plans and obtain a cost estimate from a contractor. Include any consultation with architects to discuss design and implementation
  3. Submit a completed Façade Grant application to the Economic Development Department: JuliaUp@greenbaywi.gov or 100 N. Jefferson St. Green Bay, WI 54301
  4. Economic Development Staff will review applications twice yearly and will select projects to refer to the Design Review Board
  5. The Design Review Board will approve the project and monitor ongoing progress. They will make a referral to the RDA.
  6. The RDA approves the application

Who should I contact for more information?

The Economic Development Department
100 North Jefferson Street- Room 200
Green Bay, WI 54301

920 448 3397

Facade Grant Application

Facade Grant Eligible Areas

Demolition Grant Program

What is the demolition grant program?

Property owners will be reimbursed up to $10,000 for the removal of dilapidated or sub-standard structures located on commercial properties in Demolition Grant Eligible Areas (see map). Funds will only be made available for projects resulting in new construction on the demolition site. Awards will be determined on a project-by-project basis. 25% match is required. Funds will be distributed as a reimbursement after expenses have incurred.

Who is eligible for the program?

Any building owner/developer may apply for a Demolition Grant. The building or structure being razed must be located within the Demolition Grant Eligible Areas (see map). Project must satisfy a National Objective for Community Development Block Grant Funding as defined by HUD (either job creation or blight elimination). The owner or developer cannot be delinquent on any current City charges, taxes, or assessments or have defaulted on any previous City assistance.

What are the requirements of the program?

  • The owner/developer must submit a professionally prepared plan for the redevelopment of the cleared site
  • The grant recipient must obtain design approval of the new structure from the Design Review Board prior to the release of funds
  • The new building or structure must consist of at least 50 percent commercial uses. Other projects will be considered based upon projected assessed value and impact on the surrounding area.
  • The grant recipient must secure appropriate building and related permits that are associated with razing and construction of a new building/ structure
  • The grant recipient must raze the current building/ structure within three months from the date of the grant award. The new building/structure must be completed within one year of demolition unless an alternate timeline is arranged.

What is the application process?

  1. Meet with Economic Development Staff to discuss your project, review your preliminary designs and discuss timelines
  2. Finalize project plans and obtain a cost estimate from a contractor. Include any consultation with architects to discuss plans for razing existing structure and building new structure
  3. Submit a completed Demolition Grant application to the Economic Development Department: JuliaUp@greenbaywi.gov or 100 N. Jefferson St. Green Bay, WI 54301
  4. Economic Development Staff will review applications twice yearly and will select projects to refer to the Design Review Board
  5. The Design Review Board will approve the project and monitor ongoing progress. They will make a referral to the RDA.
  6. The RDA approves the application

Who should I contact for more information?

The Economic Development Department
100 North Jefferson Street- Room 200
Green Bay, WI 54301

920 448 3397

Demolition Grant Application

Demolition Grant Eligible Areas

 

 


Industrial Revenue Bonds


The City is willing to work with eligible manufacturing businesses to secure industrial revenue bonds. The Wisconsin Economic Development Corporation allocates an amount to the city to sell bonds on behalf of the developer.  Proceeds then go to the business to finance their project with the recipient being directly responsible for repayment.  Industrial Revenue Bonds are a good tool for larger projects that need substantial funding for start-up or expansion.  The Economic Development Authority will work with the business to obtain the necessary City Council resolutions and assist with the applications to the State of Wisconsin.

Qualified Energy Conservation Bonds
Energy Conservation Bonds are tax-credit bonds issued to finance qualified conservation purposes including capital expenditures incurred to reduce energy consumption, expenditures for research facilities and research grants, mass commuting facilities, demonstration projects designed to promote commercialization of certain energy conservation and renewable energy initiatives and public education campaigns to promote energy efficiency.  Please consult with a Bond Attorney for project specific information.


Tax Credits

WI Historic Preservation Tax Credits and Federal Historic Preservation Tax Credits

Owners of historic income-producing properties in Wisconsin may be eligible for two income tax credits that can help pay for their building’s rehabilitation. The Wisconsin Historical Society’s Division of Historic Preservation (DHP) administers both programs in conjunction with the National Park Service (NPS). The programs are:

Federal Historic Preservation Credit. This program returns 20 percent of the cost of rehabilitating qualified historic buildings to owners as a direct reduction in their federal income taxes.

Wisconsin Supplemental Historic Preservation Credit. This program returns an additional 20 percent of the cost of rehabilitation to owners as a discount on their Wisconsin state income taxes. Owners that qualify for the Federal Historic Preservation Credit automatically qualify for the Wisconsin supplement if they get NPS approval before they begin any work

CDFI New Markets Tax Credits: Eligible Census Tracks

New Market Tax Credits

The New Markets Tax Credit (NMTC) Program permits taxpayers to receive a credit against Federal income taxes for making qualified equity investments in eligible Community Development Entities (CDEs). The NMTC program was designed to make investment capital available to businesses in qualifying low-income communities, to create jobs and spur additional economic development.  Businesses eligible to receive NMTC financing are corporations, partnerships, sole-proprietorships and non-profits that are active and located in a low-income community, as defined by the NMTC regulations. In general, a Low-Income Community is defined as a Census tract with a poverty rate of at least 20%, or with median income of up to 80% of the area or statewide median, whichever is greater.  For a non-metropolitan census tract, 80% of the statewide median is acceptable.

Additionally, the business receiving the tax credits must derive at least half its gross income from business in the eligible area and must have a “substantial portion” (40%) of its tangible property located in a low-income community.  Finally, the business must perform a substantial portion (40%) of its services in any low-income community.

New Market tax Credits are distributed by local financial institutions that have been pre-qualified by the US Treasury Department to administer the program.  Check with your bank to see if they are a participating institution.


Brownfield Redevelopment

The Railyard - DDL - Larsen Green 1

Reclaiming Contaminated Property

The Economic Development Authority of the City of Green Bay is the recipient of two brownfield assessment grants totaling $300,000 from the Environmental Protection Agency. The EPA’s Brownfields Program works to prevent, assess, safely cleanup, and sustainably reuse brownfield sites. The EPA defines brownfields as real property, the expansion, redevelopment, or reuse of which may be complicated by the presence or potential presence of a hazardous substance, pollutant, or contaminant.

The Economic Development Authority will use these grants to conduct environmental assessments on brownfield sites that are being considered for redevelopment, or for any brownfield site that is a potential threat to public welfare or the environment. Revitalizing brownfield sites provides many benefits to the City, including blight elimination and increased property values. To date, many successful brownfield redevelopment projects been realized in Green Bay with the assistance of EPA assessment grants. These projects have collectively created over 700 jobs and leveraged over $120M in private investment. One of the City’s most compelling examples is the redevelopment of the former Washington Commons Mall into the international headquarters for Schreiber Foods. This site was assessed using $148,805 in EPA funds followed by $2.3M in TID funding to clear and prepare the site for redevelopment. In the fall of 2014, Schreiber Foods completed the construction of an $85M, 260,000-square foot building on the site which is now home to over 600 employees.

The following link will guide you on a tour of brownfield sites that have been assessed using the City’s EPA assessment grant: http://arcg.is/1MQUoOE

 

Submit Site Nominations

The Economic Development Authority will consider providing financial assistance for brownfield assessments on sites that meet the following criteria:

  • The site has been or is of current or recent interest to a developer, for which the availability of funding for environmental assessment costs would enhance the likelihood of redevelopment on the site.
  • Abandoned sites that are a significant blighting influence, a potential threat to public welfare or the environment.
  • There is real or perceived contamination on vacant, abandoned, or underutilized property.
  • If contamination is known to be present, the funding cannot be used to relieve the responsible party of the costs for investigating something for which they have a legal obligation.
  • Preference will be given to brownfield properties within the target areas of the Velp Avenue, Broadway  and the University Avenue corridors.

Brownfield Site Nomination Form


Other Resources

Other sources for loans:

WEDC – Wisconsin Economic Development Corporation

The Wisconsin Economic Development Corporation has a number of programs in which the agency makes direct loans to businesses.  For more information, contact the regional development manager, Frank Frasseto 920.231.7320.

WHEDA – Wisconsin Housing and Economic Development Authority

WHEDA works closely with lenders, developers, local government, nonprofits, community groups and others to implement its low-cost financing programs.

SBA 504 Loans

The federal Small Business Administration 504 Program provides growing businesses with long-term, fixed-rate financing for major fixed assets, such as land and buildings.  Check their web site for additional information.