The Star-Herald

Presque Isle is open for business

Do you have a dream of one day starting your own business? Did you make a resolution this year to be your own boss? If either of these questions sound like you, why not try starting your business in Presque Isle today?  The city’s Department of Economic and Community Development would like to hear your business idea and to be your partner in building a more prosperous Presque Isle. 

By way of background, the Presque Isle City Council restructured the former Planning and Development Department last year into the city’s center for economic promotion and revitalization.  With this change in department operations, the city council sent a clear message to residents and entrepreneurs that Presque Isle is open for business and wants to be your guide and investor in your future plans.  No matter how big or small your business plan, the department staff would like to share why you should choose Presque Isle as your ideal location, as well as how we can assist you with opening your business’ doors in 2020.

When deciding where to establish your first business or expand your existing operations, always consider the advice that every Realtor gives prospective clients: “location, location, location.”  Presque Isle is that ideal location to start your small business or expand your existing operations. As one of the major service centers for Aroostook County, Presque Isle offers the ability to grow your business venture with properties that meet your needs for great market exposure and ease in distribution logistics.  In addition, most parcels within the city’s urban compact area are also blessed with adequate public infrastructure including, high-speed internet, public water, sewer, parking and major transportation corridors.  

As an added bonus, Presque Isle offers three systems of higher and career technical education to supply your business with the labor skills needed to succeed in an ever-changing global economy.  Truly, Presque Isle is the ideal location that offers many benefits and amenities to build your entrepreneurial dream into a reality.

Once you have determined that locating in Presque Isle makes sense for your business venture, the city offers multiple opportunities to help finance your dream.  Presque Isle boasts over two million in the City’s Development Fund to offer low interest loans (below 1 percent of prime) for businesses looking to establish or expand their operations within the city limits.  The fund request amounts range from $5,000 – $200,000 and are generally used as a source of gap financing with your primary lending institution for the purposes of reducing operational costs up front.  

The fund also requires businesses applying for the program to provide a 20-percent match in equity for the total amount borrowed.  The terms for repayment in this loan program range from 5-15 years depending on the loan amount and your business plan projections.  

The city is also an active member of the Finance Authority of Maine’s Regional Economic Development Revolving Loan Program, which offers 100 percent financing for small businesses below $50,000 or 50 percent of total costs exceeding $50,000 up to $350,000.  The interest rate for this revolving loan fund is competitive and well below current market rates.  

If you are interested in learning more about these financing partnership opportunities, please do not hesitate to contact the Department of Economic and Community Development at 207-760-2727 or stop by City Hall to pick up informational brochures.  

Please know that the Presque Isle Department of Economic and Community Development  stands ready to help turn your entrepreneurial dreams into reality. If you have questions regarding a property’s zoning, building code rules, permit requirements, or understanding market trends the City’s Department of Economic and Community Development knowledgeable staff are ready to hear your idea confidentially and to assist in any way as we build a more prosperous Presque Isle.  

In closing, the question to ask yourself is what is holding you back from starting your business in Presque Isle today?  As Amazon Founder Jeff Bezos said it best, “…I knew that if I failed, I wouldn’t regret that, but I knew the one thing I might regret is not trying.”

Galen Weibley is Presque Isle’s director of economic and community development. He can be reached at 207-760-2727 or via email at

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