Jake and Todd Discuss the Community Development Block Grant, Startup Redding, and the Office Move.

Jake: I’m here at the Shasta Venture hub with Todd Jones.

Todd: Hello I’m Todd Jones, the director of entrepreneurial development for the Shasta EDC.

Jake: So we’re going to start doing this once a week and adding it to the Website news center and starting out this week we’re going to be talking about The Community Development Block Grant (CDBG) also known as the Kickstart program. So Todd why don’t you tell us all about.

Todd: Yes so we have the Kickstart program here at the Shasta EDC and that it is funded by the city of Redding through the Community Development Block Grant CDBG. The funds come directly from the federal government through this program which helps with housing, small businesses, and a variety of things and we are fortunate enough to receive this grant to help micro-enterprises here in Shasta County.

Jake: How many people have has helped so far?

Todd: Since the last fiscal year, we had about 16 members and that’s right about max for how many people we can actually handle in the program because the grant does have limited funds for the fiscal year which will go until June 30th of 2019. If you qualify based on income guidelines you can apply for the Kickstart program and you receive a free coworking membership to Shasta Venture Hub. So with that, you’ll get access to the coworking space, conference rooms, high-speed Internet, and then of course time with Tony Giovanniello, the President of the Economic Development Corporation of Shasta County (Shasta EDC), and myself to help you with your startup enterprise.

Jake: Just so I can make something clear, a small business owner who’s getting started who meets the eligibility guidelines gets a free office, free supplies, and a free business coach.

Todd: Yes, but it is not a dedicated office. Is only for the coworking space in the Shasta Venture Hub. The hours are from 7 AM to 9 PM every day of the week, Monday through Friday.  You can use the Venture Hub as your professional main address and they can be your place to work and you can rent the conference room to host meetings or for anything you need to do.

Jake: It is very cool. So you mentioned there are eligibility requirements. Do you want to go over those?

Todd: All of the eligibility requirements are basically based on income. So the easiest way would be to go to shastaventurehub.com and from there you will see a link that will take you to kickstart program.

Jake: Great. Why don’t you tell us a little bit about Startup Redding.

Todd: Yes I invite you to all check out the Startup Redding Podcast. There are currently six episodes up where you can learn about how we got to where we are with the sort of ecosystem in the ratings specifically in Shasta County as a whole. We’re formalizing Star Branding. We have two podcasts on how we got to where we are one on our little Shasta Angel Investment Group, a local startup, and Pub Talks which is a new series that we’re doing and the next one’s going to be on Thursday, September 20th. That’s going to be at Wild Card Brewing Company. We’re going to talk about Business Model Canvas; how you can craft your business models to start running as a green group in town. That’s been around just about as long as the Venture Hub. It’s really taking on a lot of these initiatives that The Shasta EDC has done for the past three years so as part of our move we’re doing more events outside of the physical space that we lease. It’s exciting to just see Redding take ownership of some of these activities and keep getting back to the core missions of business – recruitment, retention, and expansion. So it’s exciting to see this group of people, these volunteers and entrepreneurs getting involved.  

Jake: Where can people find the podcast?

Todd: So the easiest place right now is on the Startup Redding Facebook page where you can also find the Spotify and iTunes. Next month you can come visit from a new location. Take a look at Startup Redding and if you’re a small businesses who just got started, you can check out the Kickstart program.

Jake: I think that is it for today. Thanks for joining us, Todd.  We really try to connect to you with all the resources that are available to us. So it’s a good spot to just get plugged in if you have an idea for new business or you’re just getting started. You can join the long list of success stories that are coming out of the Shasta EDC.