Building projects receive boost with grants

Friday, March 15, 2002

Business Today

DEXTER -- Two projects in Stoddard County recently received a financial boost from the federal government.

The Dexter Chamber of Commerce incubator building project and the expansion program at the Stars and Stripes Museum in Bloomfield were recipients of grants from the Department of Agriculture Rural Development program.

The announcements were made at separate ceremonies at the industrial building, which formerly housed Paramount Cap Co. in Dexter, and at the museum south of Bloomfield.

Dexter Chamber of Commerce Development Inc. purchased the industrial building last year with assistance from all Dexter banks, and two employers are in operation at the facility. The $141,100 grant from USDA Rural Development will allow for the completion of the remodeling of the building.

According to Dexter Chamber of Commerce executive director Janet Coleman, once the renovations are complete the building will serve as a business incubator -- a facility in which small or emerging business can operate.

Up to five new businesses could potentially be based at the Market Street facility, providing up to 50 new jobs to the area. In addition, there will be two small office spaces available, a conference/training room and the offices of the Chamber of Commerce.

The theory behind the incubator concept is that space is provided for emerging businesses to allow the company time to develop and grow. Operating costs are much lower in an incubator project. When the business can graduate out on its own to another space, that incubator space is available for another project.

The management of the facility will be through an arrangement with the Dexter Chamber.

At the Stars and Stripes Museum, a grant for $65,000 for the second phase of the museum project was presented.

The grant from USDA Rural Development will be used to complete an expansion project at the museum that will expand the facilities collection and also provide an additional 10 jobs at the historical facility.

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