JOED Partnership’s Development Fund Committee met last week to begin laying the framework for this fund, which will be operated through the 50(c)3 Partnership.

L-R: Scott Riggs, R. S. Riggs & Associates, LLC Manager & CEO and JOEDP Development Fund Chairman; Ed Garris, First National Bank Sr. Vice President; Cowanda Bazile, Express Employment Professionals owner, Mark Sutherland, JOED; Chuck Uzzell, Marine Federal Credit Union Chief Credit Officer; Roy Herrick, Swansboro Area Economic Development Committee, Chair; and John Hunter, The Hunter Family Company, Inc. President.

This process will yield an implementation plan for the establishment and operation of the Fund.  Beyond filling the need for a revolving loan fund that provides gap financing in support of area businesses, the Fund will also serve as a source of financing of product development.  As examples of the issues being discussed by the Committee…What are the primary objectives of the Fund? Who will eligible recipients be? Will there be a maximum loan amount? What are the repayment terms? Will there be grants? Will financial assistance be driven by the number of new or retained jobs, growth of the tax base, or other criteria?

Rather than “recreate the wheel,” the JOEDP Development Fund committee will rely on the experiences of several comparable funds in our region as well as the expert guidance of consultant Sheldon Bartel, Field Director at the National Development Council. Mr. Bartel has years of experience in the design and implementation of a variety of economic development funding models used across the US.

Retained as a consultant by JOED in 2019, Mr. Bartel conducted and presented a detailed market study of non-profit business lending in our community. At the National Development Council, he assists clients nationwide with data collection and analysis, design, management, and appraisal of economic and housing development projects, and the underwriting of real estate and small business loans. In addition, Sheldon teaches economic development finance and small business credit analysis courses for the National Development Council’s Economic Development Finance Professional certification program. He also teaches economic development credit analysis for the IEDC.