PABLO—The Confederated Salish and Kootenai Tribes’ Economic Development Office is pleased to announce the award of eight grants to Tribal member business owners in 2019, and the continuation of this important Indian Business Assistance Project on the Flathead Reservation. The Project provides small grants, ranging from $2,000 to $7,000 each, to existing or new CSKT member-owned businesses.
Nicholus Barber (owner of the Barber Shop in Hot Springs), Jason Heavy Runner (Indian Instruments), Brad Pluff (new owner of Flathead Vending, LLC), Louis Caye, Jr. (Caye Wildfire Services, LLC), Crystal Matt (Ombre Mountain Designs, LLC), Justin Dumontier (the Kapi Shop in St. Ignatius), Shaunda Albert (Willow Canyon Professional Counselling Services) and Joe Muniz (A.J. Rentals, LLC) received grants ranging from $6,000-7,000 this past year. The Tribal Council and the Economic Development Office (EDO) congratulate these hard-working entrepreneurs, and encourage everyone to utilize and/or support these businesses.
The grants available to qualifying applicants can be used for activities such as the purchase of new equipment or inventory, or development of a new product line. Applications for the next round of funding are due November 4.
Over the past eight years, the Confederated Salish and Kootenai Tribes have awarded 56 grants to Tribal members who own businesses on the Reservation. The grants require a minimum dollar-to-dollar match from the business owner that can be in the form of cash, loan funds, or in-kind. In-kind match can include inventory, supplies, equipment, tools or vehicles that are used for the business.
Due to limited funding, the grants are competitive and will be ranked according to five criteria: quality of the application, business experience of the applicant, financial projections, the business marketing plan, and quality of the match. Those with a greater financial need will also rank higher than those with the ability to obtain alternative financing. Applications from business owners who have already received a grant from EDO will be considered a lower priority for funding compared to those who have not previously received a grant, but all are encouraged to apply.
When applying, existing business owners must show how the funding will support growth in their business, either through the development of a new project or through their existing business strategy. Applicants who are proposing to start a new business must show how the funding will support the success of their start-up idea. Applicants must describe this in the application narrative, financial information and financial projections.
Applications must be typed and include a:
• Proposal letter that states the amount of funding requested, its purpose, and a detailed description of the match to be provided
• Business Plan that describes the nature of the business, its product or service, its market, customers and competition, and provides a marketing plan and business strategy for the next 3 years, and a 3-year cash projection
• Resume(s) that outlines the background and experience of the owner(s) and each of the principal employees
• Documentation of CSKT enrollment
• Tax returns for the last two years, if available
• Financial statements, both personal and business
• Supporting documentation that supports the information in the grant proposal, such as a building lease, contracts, invoices, vendor quotes and letters of reference.
• If a loan is included as match, the application must also include a loan repayment plan or schedule, and information and collateral used to obtain the loan
Officials from three local banks volunteer their time to review and rank the applications. Successful recipients will receive notification of their awards in December. Awards are made through a Tribal contract and invoice process, and payment is not immediate.