$2M development fund created in Waukesha County

Freeman Staff

May 24, 2019

WAUKESHA — To encourage economic development in Waukesha County, the Generating Resources and Opportunity in Waukesha County Fund has been created by the Waukesha County Center for Growth.

The fund will support business expansion and innovative housing solutions by giving businesses access to financial resources while allowing contributing banks to meet federal lending guidelines.

The GROW Fund has three founding members, Town Bank, First Bank Financial Centre, and Johnson Financial Group, that all contributed to create the initial $2 million fund. The Milwaukee Economic Development Corporation will manage the fund.

“This shows what can happen when public and private partners work together to spark economic development,” said Waukesha County Executive Paul Farrow in a statement. “This tool will enhance the Waukesha County Center for Growth’s ability to connect businesses with the resources they need to grow.”

The GROW Fund is a revolving loan fund with two core purposes — the first is to support businesses with the capital they need to grow, and the second is to develop residential housing to meet workforce needs, according to the announcement. The fund also provides federal Community Reinvestment Act credits to banks that contribute to the fund, to help meet community credit needs for economic development.

“The GROW Fund is unique because it’s designed to increase affordable housing options in Waukesha County while encouraging banks to invest in the community,” said Nate Zastrow, executive vice president and CFO of First Bank Financial Centre, in a statement.

Businesses that want to access the GROW Fund should contact the Waukesha County Center for Growth. For more information, visit www.waukeshagrowth.org.