Business Incentives

Key resources

  • Pelican Rapids EDA and City of Pelican Rapids: The Pelican Rapids Mayor along with 1 council person and 3 community members and business owners serve as the governing body of the Pelican Rapids Economic Development Authority (EDA) which has broad powers to provide encouragement and financial support of economic development and redevelopment in Pelican Rapids.

Key terminology         

  1. Tax Abatement: Qualifying taxes are “abated” (or more like “rebated”) to a qualified business for a set period of years (up to 15-20 years). Would need to go before each taxing district separately: the city, the county and the school district for approval.

Contact: City Administrator, Lance Rosium

  1. Tax Increment Financing (TIF): Qualifying taxes are “captured” and used to write down the costs of the project. Some of the eligible activities include land, site improvements, and utilities. Would need to go before the city for approval.

Development Resources:



  • West Central Initiative Foundation business loans gap financing: Finance assistance for targeted industries including value-added agriculture, natural resource-based manufacturers and industries utilizing technology in manufacturing processes. Financing up to $250,000.
  • City of Fergus Falls (Pelican Rapids): City of Fergus Falls (Pelican Rapids) Intermediary Relending Program (IRP):  IRP is a loan program for community development projects, new businesses, business expansion, or the creation or retention of employment. Loan limit is up to 50% of project cost up to $250,000. Interest rates vary.

State and National

  • Veteran Entrepreneur Portal: Resources about financing and business development for veterans.
  • Minnesota Investment Fund: Low-interest loan program from the state, which grants money to the city, which in turn lends money to the business at a negotiated rate, typically 1% - 4%. Dollar amount of loan is based on number of jobs created at certain wage thresholds, up to $500,000
  • Greater MN Job Expansion Fund: The Greater Minnesota Job Expansion Program provides tax benefits to businesses located in Greater Minnesota that increase employment.
  • Minnesota Angel Tax Credit: Provides a 25-percent credit to investors or investment funds that put money into startup companies focused on high technology, new proprietary technology, or a new proprietary product, process or service in specified fields.
  • MN Job Creation Fund: The Job Creation Fund provides financial incentives to new and expanding businesses that meet certain job creation and capital investment targets.
  • USDA Business Loans and Grants: The USDA has a variety of loan and grant programs available to businesses, many specific to particular industries. For example, the Rural Business Intermediary Relending Program has up to $250,000 available at a negotiated interest rate between 1-4%. Can be used for land, building, equipment, working capital, feasibility studies, interest, and fees for professional services.

Business Management Resources:

    1. Starting and Managing a Business: This collection of resources from the Small Business Administration (SBA) is a great place to start for any aspiring entrepreneur. Topics include:
      a. Is Entrepreneurship For You?
      b. 10 Steps to Starting a Business
      c. 20 Questions Before Starting
      d. Understanding Your Market
      f. Business Data and Statistics
      g. Business Types
      h. Finding a Mentor or Counselor
    2. Small Business Development Center (SBDC): Our regional SBDC at Concordia College in Moorhead can assist you directly with low or no-cost business planning and counseling.  Contact either [email protected] or 218-299-3037.


In February 2016, economic development leaders and other community members from Pelican Rapids convened to discuss business retention and expansion in the community. Thereafter, it was decided to launch a BR&E initiative in Pelican Rapids. A leadership team and a full task force were assembled to work alongside the University of Minnesota Extension team to conduct research on business needs and opportunities in the area. Pelican Rapids businesses were personally interviewed by members of the BR&E leadership team, task force, and other volunteers.

This report presents findings of their efforts. The Pelican Rapids BR&E Program has five objectives

To demonstrate support for local businesses.

To help solve immediate business concerns.

To increase local businesses’ ability to compete in the global economy.

To establish and implement a strategic plan for economic development.

To build community capacity to sustain growth and development.

The Market Area Profile, or Retail Study, was updated to a 2017 version and reflects the kinds of business that may be sustainable in the Pelican Rapids market area.

LOIS is the leading online economic development site selection tool in the United States. LOIS provides a GIS-enhanced site database system which gives a strong competitive advantage in the rough and tumble world of site selection.


Otter Tail County Cities
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