B. UNLEASHING LOCAL CAPITAL
Moderated by: Janice Brown, MCDC Executive Director, and Wendy Green Lowe of P2 Solutions
Session I: Legal and Financial Tools for Rural Investment Cooperatives
This interactive session will focus on building the legal and financial foundations for a new type of cooperative association – a rural investment cooperative or RIC – whose members can invest in critical assets needed for local economic development. These RICs would be most suitable in parts of rural Montana that struggle for investment capital and lack the capacity to compete successfully for large infrastructure grants.
Ken Fichtler, Chief Business Development Officer, Governor’s Office of Economic Development (invited)
Seth Leon, Manager of Co-operative Services, Alberta Community and Co-operative Association (invited)
Session II: Rural Investment Cooperatives – Pilot Project Design
This session will engage all leaders of prospective RIC pilot projects in laying the groundwork for their individual co-op initiatives. Discussion topics will include how to identify the best “bricks & mortar” project for co-op investment; forming and recruiting the necessary RIC steering committee; preparing needed market analyses and co-op feasibility studies; and how to build community awareness and participation. The group also will design a “Prepare to Launch” workshop for late summer intended for members of pilot project steering committees.
Pilot Project Liaisons:
Kathie Bailey, ED, Snowy Mountain Development Corporation
Katie Weaver, MSU Park County Economic & Community Development Extension Agent
12 3rd Street NW, Suite #110
P.O. Box 3027
Great Falls, Montana 59403