lgGehl_Bldg_3The City of West Bend manages numerous Tax Incremental Finance Districts (TIDs) and, as permitted by Wisconsin Statute, may extend financial support to site development, public infrastructure, and other costs associated with job creating, private sector projects. Each TIF is negotiated by the private developer and the West Bend Department of Development and is subject to approval by the common council.

The City of West Bend frequently partners with Economic Development Washington County (EDWC) to provide joint incentives for projects occurring within the boundaries of West Bend.  EDWC can provide various types of incentives, including loans and grants.  Incentives depend upon the type and extent of the project.  For more information on EDWC, please click here.

The Downtown West Bend Association (DWBA), in partnership with the West Bend Economic Development Corporation, offers a Facade Improvement Grant program for eligible businesses located within a geographically defined boundary. The program requires a match and can provide funds in the form of a grant for eligible costs. For more information or an application, contact the West Bend Economic Development Corporation at (262) 335-5218.


The City of West Bend has a revolving loan fund initially capitalized with $1 million in locally generated funds. Eligible applicants, which must be creating or retaining jobs in the city, may apply for up to 40% of its eligible capital expenses at 2/3 of prime which is a fixed rate for the term of the loan. Used as gap financing, borrowers must also obtain financing from a commercial or traditional lender and provide 10% equity. The City of West Bend Department of Development conducts an initial assessment of potential loans. If deemed eligible and meeting program requirements, the application is submitted to Economic Development Washington County (EDWC) for underwriting and approval by its revolving loan fund committee.  Final approval is submitted to the West Bend Common Council.

The City of West Bend has a downtown commercial lending program for eligible applicants in a geographical boundary approved by the West Bend Common Council and its revolving loan fund committee.. The origination of the program dollars were derived from the State of Wisconsin through a Community Development Block Grant through the U.S. Department of Housing. Eligible applicants, which must be creating or retaining jobs in the city, may apply for up to 40% of its eligible capital expenses at 2/3 of prime which is a fixed rate for the term of the loan. Used as gap financing, borrowers must also obtain financing from a commercial or traditional lender and provide 10% equity.  Loan applications are reviewed by the city’s revolving loan fund committee and approved by the common council.

The Business Development Loan Pool Program was established to help revitalization efforts, increase capital investment and provide support for new and existing businesses.  The fund was established through a commitment from Bank Five Nine and the City of West Bend.  Eligible businesses include commercial, retail or restaurant establishments and must be located within the Downtown West Bend Business Improvement District (BID) or the Historic Barton Commercial Area.  Eligible expenses include acquisition of land/building, building improvements/construction, equipment purchases, environmental or safety compliance, demolition, and matching funds for the downtown commercial revolving loan program.  Interest rates are typically fixed as low as 1.00%.  Each loan is evaluated separately on collateral, risk and terms.  Loans are generally not less than $10,000, or more than $25,000.   

Tax-exempt bonds may be made available for qualified projects with fixed low-interest, long term structures. Industrial Revenue Bonds (IRBs) are municipal sponsored and used in cooperation with a financial institution. The city’s financial advisors and bond counsel are deployed to assist with the structuring of the project and the terms and conditions.

We Energies offers business development incentives in the form of loans and grants for eligible applicants which are investing in energy efficient related capital expenditures.  We Energies also provides consultations and tools for monitoring and analyzing energy management.

Focus on Energy is Wisconsin utilities’ statewide energy efficiency and renewable resource program. Since 2001, the program has worked with eligible Wisconsin residents and businesses to install cost-effective energy efficiency and renewable energy projects.  These projects help Wisconsin residents and businesses manage rising energy costs, promote in-state economic development, protect our environment, and control Wisconsin’s growing demand for electricity and natural gas. 

Currently available is the Facade Loan Pool Program.  Please review the required documents and contact the Communciations and Economic Development Director to review the application for submittal to the Façade Loan Pool Committee.  Contact information for this program and others listed is (262) 335-5170 or wildesj@ci.west-bend.wi.us.  

Tax Re-Investment Program

If the proposed job creation or retention project is creating real estate improvement tax revenues, the city may be able to return a portion of the municipality’s new revenue to the developer or business in the form of a rebate.  The rate and term is negotiated with the city and is determined through an analysis of the quality of positions being created and increased value in real estate.


The West Bend Department of Development also provides assistance to business enterprises that may be eligible for state or federal assistance. A consultation and assessment with department staff may result in partners being brought in from the West Bend Economic Development Corporation, Economic Development Washington CountyWisconsin Economic Development CorporationSmall Business AdministrationU.S. Department of AgricultureU.S. Department of Commerce among others, depending on the needs and eligibility factors of the enterprise. Financing, grants, tax credits and other forms of assistance may be identified depending on the nature of the project under consideration.

SCORE is a non-profit organization dedicated to free business consulting, business management training and the formation, growth, and success of small businesses nationwide, with an office in West Bend. 

West Bend is located within the Southeastern Wisconsin Foreign Trade Zone No. 41 out of the Port of Milwaukee. Significant duty deferral on average inventory may be possible under this Foreign Trade Zone.

1115 S. Main Street
West Bend, WI 53095
(262) 335-5100


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