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Community Development

Focus:  Economic Growth

MISSION STATEMENT:  To strive for economic growth, promote businesses and create employment opportunities in Gogebic and Ontonagon counties.




*Creates partnerships throughout Gogebic/Ontonagon counties for economic growth.

*Supports and assists small businesses, entrepreneurs and local municipalities.

*Works to recruit businesses and demographics.

*Collaborates with economic development organizations throughout Michigan.

*Researches funding sources for businesses and job creation.

Contact:  Community Development Department: 906-667-0283 Ext 19


*New Business Start-up resource contact:  Paul Werner, Michigan State University Extension:




Business Planning

  1. Guide to Starting a Business – MI-SBTDC

  2. County Clerk Directory –

  3. Small Business Readiness Assessment Tool – SBA 

  4. Resource Navigator –

  5. Applying for an EIN – The IRS

  6. Writing a Business Plan – MI-SBTDC

  7. North American Industry Classification System – The US Census Bureau 

Training and Consulting Resources



MI-SBTDC Small Business Counseling

The Michigan Small Business & Technology Development Center counsels entrepreneurs and small business owners to assist in the launching or growth of their business. There is no cost for the counseling service. The counseling application can be found here.

Contact your local MI-SBTDC Center or to find an MI-SBTDC Center near you.


MI-SBTDC Events/Workshops

The Michigan Small Business & Technology Development Center offers training workshops for business start-ups and established small businesses alike, including:

  • Writing a Business Plan

  • Marketing Your Business

  • Financial Management

  • Business Legal Issues

  • Selling in the 21st Century

  • Retail Inventory Management

  • ...And much more

More information on MI-SBTDC Training Events is available here.


Northern Initiatives Business Services

Northern Initiatives helps rural businesses increase their sustainability and market reach through a variety of consulting services, including:

  • Lean Enterprise Solutions

  • General Business Coaching

  • Information Technology

  • eCommerce

  • Marketing

  • Manufacturing

Businesses who utilize the consulting services offered by Northern Initiatives enjoy an increase in performance, more efficient systems, a stronger bottom line, and a deeper connection to markets. More information on consulting services from Northern Initiatives is available here, or call (906) 228-5571.


Financing Your Small Business


Northern Initiatives Business Loans

Northern Initiatives offers commercial loans customized to meet a variety of borrowing needs, from entrepreneurs just starting a business, to established companies seeking to expand. Their flexible terms allow them to offer stand-alone financing as well as the option to work with area banks to complete financing packages.


How to Apply for a Loan from Northern Initiatives

The Northern Initiatives loan application process can now be completed here.


Checklist for Loan Application

  1. Check to make sure your business is located in one of the counties currently serviced by Northern Initiatives in the Upper Peninsula, Lower Peninsula, or Wisconsin

  2. Gather personal and business addresses and contact information

  3. Gather personal and business tax returns and bank statements

  4. Gather business income & expense report and balance sheet for existing businesses

  5. Prepare to explain the purpose of the loan and prepare an itemized use of proceeds

  6. Gather personal and business budgets and debt information

  7. Be able to provide documentation of other forms of income

  8. If using a co-borrower or co-signer, gather their personal information

  9. Be prepared to provide references

  10. Gather pay stubs and proof of al income listed on application

  11. Start-ups (6 months of operation or less) will need a business plan, financial projections, start-up budget, and proof of equity



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