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Business, ag agencies combine forces in Billings to boost rural development

Posted: 11:10 PM, May 22, 2019
Updated: 2019-07-17 14:49:06-04

BILLINGS- Two federal government agencies have come together to help small businesses in eastern Montana.

The Small Business Administration now has a satellite office with the Department of Agriculture.

The office at 1629 Ave. D is the first of its kind in the country for the USDA and the SBA.

A ribbon cutting celebrated the combined office at the USDA Service Center on Wednesday afternoon.

The agencies chose Billings because 99 percent of businesses in Montana are small.

Development and lending programs will be able to better help rural businesses.

“Every rural community is driven by small businesses,” said Charles Robison, state director for USDA rural development in Bozeman. “We’re just bringing these services to help those small businesses. When you think about it, agriculture needs the businesses in their community to survive.”

“Certainly in a state like Montana, with a multi-billion dollar agriculture industry, combined with the fact that all businesses in the state are small businesses, we have high hopes for this kind of operation,” said Dan Nordberg, regional administrator for the U.S. SBA based in Denver. “Montana is the perfect place for this kind of shop.”

This office is a satellite for SBA Montana district office in Helena.