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Economic Development Partners

There are a number of incentives that may be available to your company, depending on the nature of your investment and development. The team at the Delta County EDA will assist and guide you through the options available to help. Please contact our team at (906) 786-2192 for further information.


Downtown Development Authorities (DDA) are special tax districts whose boundaries are defined by the community. Captured tax increments are used to fund development activities and capital improvements in the downtown area.
Escanaba DDA supports economic development on Ludington Street and the adjacent waterfront. Grants may be available for façade improvements for downtown businesses. The DDA has a stand-alone office at 1025 Ludington Street, Escanaba, MI 49829. Contact DDA Director Ed LeGault at (906) 789-8696, email:

Gladstone DDA supports economic development along Delta Avenue and Lakeshore Drive, including adjacent waterfront. Façade grants are available for commercial buildings located within the downtown district. 

 Escanaba Industrial Foundation  is a source of financing for businesses who cannot secure adequate credit from local banks. Funds are awarded to industrial operations only, no retail. Applicants may be asked to provide financial statements, explain the intended use of the funds, provide assurance of repayment, and demonstrate that the loan will assist with retention and creation of jobs. Industrial Foundation loans are primarily intended for the Escanaba area, but may include Gladstone businesses. Contact Gary LaPlant at (906) 786-6654, 2500 7th Avenue South, Escanaba, MI 49829.

Brownfield Redevelopment: Escanaba, Gladstone, and Delta County have Brownfield Redevelopment Authorities. These boards can help property owners fund cleanup and improvements on sites contaminated by a hazardous substance or pollutant. Contact Peter VanSteen at (906) 786-9234, email:

Obsolete Property Rehabilitation Act:  OPRA allows partial tax exemption for commercial or commercial/residential properties that are designated as blighted or functionally obsolete. Properties within the cities of Escanaba or Gladstone may be eligible. The process starts at the local assessor’s office. Contact Escanaba City Assessor Daina Norden at (906) 786-9402 .

Airport Industrial Park (Renaissance Zone) includes industrial land available for sale and long-term lease (up to 99 years), with tax savings phased our for 15 years. Taxes abated include Michigan Business Tax, state or city income tax, general property tax, and industrial facilities tax. Tax relief will be phased out in 25% increments over the last two years of the program. Some lots allow gate access for small aircraft to the Delta County Airport. FAA and local restrictions apply. Contact Kelly Smith, Airport Manager at (906) 786-4902, email:

BayBank: Is a small business and understands the needs of small business owners. It has two locations in Delta County: Gladstone and Escanaba. Baybank is an approved lender by the Small Business Administration (SBA). Discuss your small business needs, concerns, and financing options by calling (906) 428-4040. 

First Bank Upper Michigan: Offers Commercial Loans, which funds are used for the purchase and/or development of new or existing businesses. First bank is SBA approved and has branches in both Gladstone and Escanaba to serve you. In Escanaba, contact Todd Maki, President at (906) 786-3355. In Gladstone contact Mark Lektizan at (906) 428-3535.

mBank: Offers government-backed loans through the SBA and USDA. Contact Scott Ravet, VP of Commercial Banking at (906) 341-8401 or

Upper Peninsula State Bank: Offers Term Loans, Commercial Real Estate, Commercial Lines of Credit and SBA Government Programs. Contact  loan officer, Eric Lundin at (906) 789-7000 or

Wells Fargo: Offering SBA-backed, Real Estate Backed and general lines of credit, term loans, equipment loans and real estate financing. Contact loan officer, Amy Hubert at (906) 789-5226 or

Revolving Loan Funds (RLF)
City of Escanaba RLF: Escanaba has revolving loan funds (RLF’s) available for those starting a business, expanding an existing business, purchasing equipment for a business, or improving a building that is home to your business. City RLF’s are intended to partner with, rather than compete with, local banks. It requires that you submit a business plan and/or related financial documents and borrowers must personally guarantee loans. Job creation is a priority consideration when evaluating RLF projects. Contact Robert Valentine, City Treasurer at (906) 789-7305, 410 Ludington Street, Escanaba, MI 49829, email:

Northern Initiatives is a Community Development Financial Institution (CDFI) that provides loans to small business owners, entrepreneurs, and community organizations that might not qualify for loans from traditional banks for a variety of reasons. They serve as the Regional Revolving Loan Fund manager and help with business consulting, training, and loan services as well as administering the UP’s micro-loan program and SBA programs. Based in Marquette, they serve the whole U.P. Call (906) 229-5571 for more information. 


Michigan Economic Development Corporation (MEDC): The MEDC is Michigan’s economic development authority with direct control over resources and programs. This organization is a partnership between the State of Michigan and local communities. The MEDC provides business resources, Michigan business tax information, Business loans, incentives and more. Funding includes: Small Business Capital Access Program, Credit Union Small Business Financing Alliance, Private Activity Bonds and other programs. For more information contact Amy Berglund, Business Development Manager at

MDARD (MI Department of Agriculture & Rural Development): By supporting growth in our agri-food system, MDARD contributes to Michigan's economic development and diversification. As the state's second largest economic driver, Agriculture is a sector ripe with opportunity for business expansion and job growth. Contact: Donna LaCourt, Director of Economic Development, at


USDA: USDA’s Business and Industry (B&I) Guaranteed Loan program guarantees loans made by eligible lenders to rural businesses.The primary purpose of the program is to create and maintain employment and improve the economic and environmental climate in rural communities. The program is available to existing or start-up businesses and may be used for real estate and buildings, machinery & equipment, term working capital, and refinancing. Ineligible loan purposes include agricultural production. Terms range from 7 years for working capital to 15 years for machinery and equipment to 30 years for real estate, construction, or debt refinancing. Interest rates are negotiated between the business and the lender and guarantees range between 60% and 80% of the loan. Approved lenders can contact Lori Krause at (906) 428-1060, ext. 112, email: 

The U.S. Small Business Association (SBA): In addition to other business services, the SBA offers three loan programs: 7(a), Micro loans and CDC/504 loan program. They also offer connections to grants, venture capital and bond options. 

Superior Trade Zone Designation for Delta and Marquette Counties

A new economic development district in the Upper Peninsula officially became law in Michigan when Governor Rick Snyder signed the legislation enacted in 2014. The law amends Public Act 275 to include a sixth Next Michigan Development Corporation in Delta and Marquette counties. Five such districts exist downstate and are eligible for state funding and tax incentives. These incentives are available not only to new businesses but also those expanding in Michigan that utilize multi-modal transportation in their supply or production chains.