TURLOCK (CBS13) – A program designed to jumpstart one local economy appears to be working.

One year in the making, the idea is to offer cash incentives to Turlock business owners who move into empty store fronts.

The city says it’s been successful.

Johanna Atwood and her husband are the latest success story

“It’s a great incentive to help people along the way to help with extra expenses,” she said.

Opened a few months ago, Cycle Fit of Turlock is one of 10 businesses taking advantage of the city’s “Partnership Incentives Program.”

The first-time business owners recently received a check for $1,000 straight from the city’s general fund.

“For us it will be for advertising,” Atwood said. “We have been open a few months. We are ready to go but we are working on getting people in to hear about us.”

The program began last year and has already helped more than 30 people.

Economic Development and Redevelopment Manager Heidi McNally-Dial calls it a success.

“I touch base with the business every four to six months and say ‘Hey, how’s it going?’ and out of 10 businesses that started, they are all still in business and doing well and three have add staff and all are meeting their goals.”

In addition to the cash help, the city works with business owners prior to launch.

“The idea is to have the business plan developed before they open, that way they can hopefully have a stronger business when they do open,” McNally-Dial said.

There’s still money up for grabs. The city has $15,000 set aside for this year.


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