• Expand and Grow Your Business

  • There are a number of reasons to expand your business here:

    • 6th Best Overall Business Tax Climate in the Country
    • No sales tax
    • One of only two state governments operating "in the black"
    • Broadband - Flathead County has 98% coverage of broadband, high-speed internet service
    • Burlington Northern Santa Fe Rail Line and Glacier Park International Airport with direct flights to eight national hubs
    • Competitive Utility Rates
    • Clean abundant water
    • Pro-business communities and easily accessible elected officials
    • Workers Compensation Reform, 2011 Legislature

      (Source:  Montana West Economic Development) 

    The Whitefish Chamber of Commerce is a proud partner of the NW Montana BEAR program.  (BEAR is an acronym for Business Expansion and Retention.)  This is a cooperative partnership of local economic, community and workforce development organizations. Our common purpose is to build local companies while enhancing our business climate.

    There are programs and resources available that will be beneficial to you and the strength of your
    business. You may not need any assistance right now but you will have a better understanding of what help is available and who to call should your situation change.

    Beargrass on Big Mountain - Photo by Jill CourtneyThrough partnerships with business providers BEAR is your direct connection to:

    • Business assessments
    • Business Plans
    • Capital
    • Education & training programs
    • Employment services
    • Export/Import assistance
    • Facility location and expansion assistance
    • Financial programs
    • Government contracting assistance
    • Human resource programs
    • Manufacturing
    • Marketing & Positioning
    • Regulatory assistance
    • Technology resources
    • Tools to manage, motivate, and strengthen your workforce


    Thank you for choosing the Flathead as a place to do business. Your investment is important to our local economy and we strive to help you grow and improve your profitability.

    To schedule a BEAR interview/assessment, please contact Kevin Gartland at the Whitefish Chamber (406) 862-3501 or email him at kevin@whitefishchamber.org. 


  • Incumbent Worker Training Program

    The Incumbent Worker Training Program can pay up to $2,000 dollars each year for tuition, fees, books and related training costs per full-time employee, while part-time employees can receive up to $1000 dollars per year. The small business employer must match the grant at 25%.

    To be eligible, small businesses must have been in business in Montana for at least a year and be duly registered as a business with the Secretary of State. The employer must have no more than 20 employees in one location, and no more than 50 statewide.

    Eligibility can be determined by local Business Expansion and Retention (BEAR) teams, local Small Business Development Councils and the Montana Manufacturing Extension Center at MSU Bozeman. Businesses who are interested but have no direct contact with these business support and education entities can contact their local Job Service office for more information.