If you’ve read our post entitled “Vacants-To-Jobs,” you know that Baltimore Rising is introducing legislation that gives employers who are willing to locate in the city’s disadvantaged neighborhoods free property and no property taxes for 5 years. The simple, but nonetheless profound idea is that we’re going to make employers offers they can’t refuse to get them to do what too many businesses have avoided. We’re going to give them a compelling reason to set up shop in a neighborhood some of them don’t even want to drive through, much less park there, get out and spend the day. Heaven forbid, maybe go out to some local place for lunch.’
The reality is that Baltimore’s disadvantaged communities are filled with good, law abiding, friendly people. And their neighborhoods have something else the “better” parts of the city don’t have: Opportunity. Gobs of opportunity. Give people jobs, jobs that pay better than a living wage and they’re going work hard, they’re going to produce for your company – and they’re going to spend that money you pay them, a lot of it locally. Help make these communities nicer places to live and work and that’s coming back to you in higher profits and property values. It’s your chance to get in on the grown floor of an economic recovery and self-sustaining growth with no where for your business to go but up. Sure, you’re pioneering, in a matter of speaking, but then where else can you help so many good people who will become loyal employees and customers while making solid profits doing it?
So our new Vacants-To-Jobs program gives you free land and no property taxes for 5 years. What else can we do for you? Well, we can help you get the construction and permanent financing you need to build or refurbish your facilities.
What we’re talking about is not a government service although it’s specifically for employers participating in Vacants-To-Jobs. This is something we’re going to do for you at Baltimore Rising. The reality is that, while everyone always hopes that some huge factory is going to hire thousands of people, the vacant property in our city is all over the place. Large companies require more contiguous lots than can easily be assembled. In all likelihood, most of the employers who move into our high unemployment neighborhoods are going to be relatively small, typically employing 5 to 50 people. They’ll be some exceptions, some larger employers where 100 or more people work, but they’ll be rare. Vacants-To-Jobs is mostly about small and moderate size businesses with well under 100 employees.
And the smaller the companies, the more likely it is that they’ll be needing help getting the construction and permanent financing they need. Okay then, as fate would have it, Baltimore Rising is tight with a number of banks who may be interested in working with you – banks that understand that time is money and have agreed to approve or disapprove any standard form application package we give them within 30 days and fund construction financing within 60 days. And, if you have any experience with banks, that’s pretty good timing.
If you’re an employer considering taking advantage of Vacants-To-Jobs and opening a new store or facility in one of the city’s disadvantaged neighborhoods, here’s what you need to know…
- You need to be an established firm, in business for a minimum of 3 years. This program is not about startups. Any size company in almost any industry is okay as long as you’ll be generating jobs for local people who can be trained on the job.
- No land banking. You’ll have only 12 months from the date you’re awarded the property that you select to open for operations.
- If you already operating in the city, you need to be expanding into the program’s target neighborhoods, not just relocating from elsewhere in Baltimore. The objective of the program is not to steal employers from other parts of the city. If you’re from out side the city, from the suburbs or across the country, you’re good to go.
- You must have been profitable during your most recent fiscal year.
- Financial statements are essential, although they needn’t be audited.
- You’ll need to borrow at least $100,000, but no more than $10 million.
- Smaller companies that need financing will need a personal guarantor, usually the owner of the business, with good credit. Otherwise, the property and whatever you build or rehab on it and a corporate guaranty will the primary security for construction and permanent financing.
- Interest will be on the low end of prevailing bank rates. Terms will be industry standard for loans of the size and purpose you need.
- Requests for operating capital will be handled separately and may not involve the same bank that is lending you money for construction. That said, preference will be given to employers who do not require operating capital. Again, no startups and no companies struggling to make a profit. This program is about creating jobs, long-lasting full-time employment in our disadvantaged communities, not helping struggling businesses.
- Our finance specialists are going to read your story, find out something about your company from its financial statements and other information you provide and think about what you need. All information we receive is kept in strict confidence to be shared with our selected lenders only if you give us written permission to do so.
- If you’re interested and you agree to proceed, we’re going to get data and other information from you and put it into a standard form package that experience – and guidelines from our lenders – tell us will facilitate their review and maximize your chances of being approved.
That’s all there is to it. It’s just that easy.
Interested? All you have to do is fill out the form below and send it to us. Just press the “Submit” button at the end of the form. Give us 5 business days and well call you to talk about what we can do for your company to help you finance your participation in our Vacants-To-Jobs program. And remember, everything we discuss, in emails or in person will be kept in confidence. It’s your business and we respect that.
Thanks. We’re looking forward to hearing from you.
Sorry, but this program is no longer open.
We’ll be back to you within 5 business days. In the meantime, don’t hesitate to call or email us if you have any questions or additional information about your company that you would like to send us.