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Organizations able to apply for NCIF funds

By Staff | Sep 23, 2011

Local entrepreneur Peter Corum, organizer of Morgan’s Grove Market, gathered regional business owners and county development officers at the Bavarian Inn in Shepherdstown Wednesday, Sept. 21 to learn about the Natural Captial Investment Fund.

David McCann, NCIF business lender for North Central West Virgina, Ohio and Kentucky, explained that the organization, a subsidiary of the Conservation Fund, provides “on-theground” lending services to finance environmental and natural resource-based businesses. He said often times the organization partners with small local organizations to help with “wealth creation.”

McCann said while NCIF likes to see jobs and wealth created in areas in which it serves, he said it usually lends for expansion projects and not necessarily start-up ventures.

“I see a lot of start and stop, and I’m not sure what that’s a function of,” McCann said.

“Fear,” Corum said.

McCann also added while his organization lends money to clients, NCIF tries not to compete with banks or other local agencies distributing micro loans.

“We’re more of a supplement,” he said, adding NCIF only has a certain amount of money to distribute each year.

He said in West Virginia, organizations can receive up to $250,000.

But, McCann stressed, businesses must remember that though it is an organization distributing the money, not a bank, it remains a loan.

“These are not grants. These are not give aways,” he said. “These are loans that have to be repaid. You have to sign a note, offer collateral.”

To learn more about NCIF and terms of its offerings in your area, visit www.ncifund.org.