Clay County Loan Fund

Building a Stronger Community by Helping Your Business Succeed

The Clay County Loan Fund (CCLF) is a component fund of West Central Initiative (WCI), which was established by the citizens of Clay County (outside of the Moorhead area) to provide additional job opportunities and improve the quality of life in Clay County, Minnesota. (See the CCLF news release and CCLF brochure available on the WCI Component Fund Toolkit webpage.)

The CCLF Revolving Loan Fund is designed for:

  • Business start-ups and expansion
  • Succession or preservation of businesses
  • Tourism
  • Childcare
  • Job creation and retention
  • Other economic development activities for the benefit of the people living and working in Clay County, Minnesota (outside of the Moorhead area)
West Central Initiative Logo

We Want to Help You Obtain Your Dreams

The CCLF assists businesses that demonstrate a "financing gap," that mostly likely would not succeed without CCLF support.

Financial Gaps

Financing gaps usually take 1 of the following forms:

  • The collateral available will not fully satisfy the underwriting standards of commercial lenders for a loan of the size needed for the project to go forward.
  • There is insufficient equity available to qualify with a commercial lender for the proposed new lending.
  • The business is at the maximum allowable lending limit for its commercial lender.
  • The cash flow available to repay the debt is insufficient to repay a loan made at standard commercial terms.
  • The project is not economically competitive in a Clay County location with standard commercial financing.

Matching & Collateral Requirements

CCLF will generally provide no more than 50% of the funding required for a project.

All loans must be collateralized. The evaluation of the value of the collateral is at the discretion of the CCLF. Personal guarantees are required on all loans.

Eligible Uses of Loan Funds

The specific use of loan funds received from CCLF must be directly tied to the project's purpose, such as real estate, machinery or equipment, working capital, inventory and related expenses and professional fees. Loans may not be used for debt refinancing or for fees charged for the preparation of applications materials.

Loan Program Terms

Interest Rates

The interest rates for CCLF loans will generally be set at or below New York Prime Rates.

Term & Amortization

The term over which loans made by CCLF will vary depending on the life of the assets used as collateral. Occasionally, the CCLF will agree to amortize a loan over a longer period than its term in order to improve the cash flow of a project. When this is done, a balloon payment of the remaining principal will be due at the end of the loan's term. Depending upon the type of loan, the maximum term which will generally be considered for a loan from CCLF will be 7 years.

Loan Size

The maximum loan size is currently set at the greater of up to $20,000, or 10% of the net assets of CCLF. Due to its relationship with WCI, the CCLF can sometimes coordinate its participation in larger projects with the various loan programs offered through WCI, resulting in a larger financing package.

Application & Origination Fees

There is no application fee, but a 1% origination fee will be charged.

Closing Costs

Successful applicants will be charged for all out-of pocket costs required for closing their loan. This typically includes costs for preparing closing documents for reviewing and recording security positions on collateral offered, and, where necessary, for appraisal of collateral.

Application Procedures

Interested parties are strongly encouraged to discuss their project with West Central Initiative before submitting an application. Contact:
West Central Initiative
Dale Umlauf
Vice President of Business Development
Email West Central Initiative
Phone: 1-800-735-2239 / 1-218-739-2239
Fax: 218-739-5381

Applications are available through West Central Initiative's website.

Completed applications should be mailed or delivered to:
West Central Initiative
Business Development
P.O. Box 318
Fergus Falls, MN 56538-0318

The CCLF will not approve requests that would result in undue competition with Clay County firms for sales of goods or services in the local market area.