“Never awake me when you have good news to announce, because with good news nothing presses; but when you have bad news, arouse me immediately, for then there is not an instant to be lost.” – Napoleon Bonaparte
It was a busy week for our government leaders. President Obama made a stop here in the Buckeye State at the Lorain County Community College (LCCC) to talk jobs and the economy; Gov. Strickland delivered the State of the State address highlighting more of the same, and finally, Obama outlined strategies for healthcare, clean energy and – you guessed it – jobs, jobs, jobs.
Clearly our country and our state are in a time of economic hardship. We have an unemployment rate hovering at 10% – give or take – and large and small businesses alike are “trimming the fat,” so to speak, by laying off workers and stretching their current employees thin to cover business demands.
So what can a state and a nation that’s been stuck under the dark cloud of a dismal economy do? Just as Gov. Strickland said, we must believe in Ohio. Finance Fund continues to believe in our great state. We’re doing all we can to be a bright spot in the doom and gloom of the financial crisis.
Finance Fund is an organization that’s been making strides for Ohio development and job creation since 1987 – with no “red” or “blue” strings attached. In fact, we’ve leveraged more than $759 million to Ohio small businesses, nonprofits and Head Start programs, which has created thousands of jobs and benefitted the lives of countless Ohioans. Here are some vital stats:
- FF has granted more than 2,457 awards to countless community-based organizations
- FF has enabled access to more than 15,312 units of affordable housing for low-income people;
- More than 8,991 full-time jobs
- Over 3,033 early care and education spaces (classrooms) for 69,377 children
For 23 years, we’ve identified needs and put our money where our mouth is:
- We supported the Heritage Marketplace/Save-a-Lot grocery store revitalization, with a $1 million New Markets Loan, resulting in 18,900 square feet of redeveloped space, 46 full- and part-time jobs, and access to affordable groceries for 25,000 people.
- Additionally, Finance Fund loaned Ohio Basic Minerals $2.45 million for a site renovation of the manufacturing plant. Thirty-five renovation jobs were created, seven in-house jobs were maintained and 30+ jobs will be added by 2012.
We truly believe that in order to grow and cultivate a strong economy and business climate, we must believe in our businesses and provide them with essential resources and guidance to flourish.
Our outlook is strong – we’ve got more funding available to eligible businesses and nonprofits this year, and we’re enthused to begin lending in order to create more jobs and stimulate economic and community development. We have more than $75 million in loan funds and nearly $3 million in grants and linked deposits to place into Ohio’s distressed communities in the next 12 months. Obama talks change; Strickland keeps believing and both plan for more small business stimulus programs. But Finance Fund continues to “make action happen” by lending to businesses, creating jobs and fostering revitalization.