A new economic development initiative got the green light from Elkin commissioners last week, creating a $100,000 revolving loan for which businesses in town can apply.
Leslie Schlender, economic development director for the town, explained that the town in 2014 applied to the North Carolina Rural Center for the funding which is provided by the United States Department of Agriculture. For the past 18 months, a group of Elkin business leaders have been working behind the scenes on the paperwork to make the revolving loan program possible.
The $100,000 is available to Elkin business owners, now that the commissioners have approved all the background documents to launch the program. More details will be discussed during Friday’s Elkin Board of Commissioners annual retreat, which begins at 8 a.m. at The Liberty, 222 E. Main St.
“We want to blitz downtown, but it is not exclusive to downtown,” Schlender said of the funds, which could be used for building renovations, façade improvements and other needs.
Other topics on Friday’s board retreat agenda include updates from the Elkin Tourism Development Authority, the Elkin Public Library, the Yadkin Valley ABC Board and the Yadkin Valley Sewer Authority, following by a financial overview by Town Manager John Holcomb, who also serves as town finance director.
Following a mid-morning break, capital projects of the town will be addressed in each department — recreation and parks, fire department, police department, planning and zoning/airport, and water operations.
After lunch, a 30-minute session is planned to discuss downtown sidewalk snow clearing, following by an hour and 45 minute session for a downtown business overview, which includes updates on an overview of the municipal service district business area, analysis of downtown business closings and vacant buildings, the revolving loan program, downtown business grants and proposed incentive tools, and downtown building ordinances.
The late afternoon will include the town’s website development, a garbage and recycling container ordinance, gaps in the sidewalks, a speed limit ordinance and the library stoplight.
The retreat is expected to end following a time for final comments at 4:30 p.m.
Wendy Byerly Wood may be reached at 336-258-4035 or on Twitter @wendywoodeditor.