Lewis and Clark County was one of two counties awarded to split a $1.2 million-dollar grant through the Montana Department of Commerce’s Community Development Block Economic Development Program (CDBG-ED) to assist local businesses and help them retain jobs.  

$400,000 of the grant money will go towards Hi-Country Snack Foods, which is Lewis and Clark County's largest employer and has been part of the community since 1976. The grant money will help retain 42 jobs for the long-standing business operation. The program is designed to stimulate economic development by helping the private sector to create or retain jobs in high-needs communities.  

“These funds specifically will override working capital to help increase their inventory and help support long term operations, so they are going to look to potentially grow as well as retain those jobs for the next three years. So, these funds will help them be able to do that,” said Jennifer Olson Committee Development Division Administrator for Montana Department of Commerce. 

Olson went on to say it is essential to help grow local businesses and economies because if we can help them thrive, along with helping residents, we are a much more thriving economy and state. She also added, whether we are helping retain 15 or 42 jobs, that is a very important part of economic development.  

Stillwater County along with the City of Hardin will split the rest of the grant money to help support the Big Horn County Memorial Hospital and Montana Silversmiths.  

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