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Farmington bank summit a success

Rob Smolund, second from right, talks about funding options available through the Metropolitan Consortium of Community Developers during the March 20 bank summit held in Farmington. Smolund is a business advisor with the new Open to Business program.

The group wasn't large -- only 15 or so -- but all of the bankers and city officials on hand at the March 20 Farmington Bank Summit agreed the community needs more commercial and industrial businesses.

What's more, they're willing to work together to make that happen.

The first meeting of its kind locally, the Farmington Bank Summit was held to educate the community's bankers on the types of funding programs offered by the city of Farmington and Dakota County. It ran about an hour, but the group covered lots of content in that time.

City planner Lee Smick ran the discussion, which recapped the Farmington Economic Development Authority's plans to incorporate business incentive funding programs to entice new business to the city. Representatives from Anchor Bank, Castle Rock Bank, Premier Bank and Roundbank asked questions and gave input on some of the programs. Rob Smolund, business advisor with the Metropolitan Consortium of Community Developers, also attended to give information about the Open to Business program recently launched in Dakota County.

Smick will use the input to develop a list of ideas and recommendations to the Farmington EDA. She also intends to schedule future meetings to work through partnerships and incentive funding programs.

Michelle Leonard

Michelle Leonard joined the Woodbury Bulletin staff in November, 2014, after 14 years covering news for the Bulletin's sister publication, the Farmington Rosemount Independent Town Pages.  Michelle earned her Bachelor of Science degree in Mass Communications: News-Editorial from Mankato State University in 1991. She is an active member of the American Legion Auxiliary Clifford Larson Unit 189 of Farmington, and served as the 2014-15 Third District President to the American Legion Auxiliary Department of Minnesota. Michelle is also the volunteer coordinator for the Minnesota Newspaper Museum which is open annually during the Minnesota State Fair. She has earned Minnesota Newspaper Association awards in Investigative Reporting, Local News Coverage, Feature Photography and Column Writing. 

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