Camden OKs biz grant for clinic


By Reggie Ponder
Staff Writer

Friday, February 8, 2019

CAMDEN — Camden commissioners voted unanimously this week to award the county’s first-ever small business incentive grant to help Chesapeake Regional Healthcare locate a primary care clinic in the county.

The $13,460 Small Business Economic Development Grant will be reimbursed over a five-year period to Chesapeake Regional Medical Group Primary Care-Camden, the entity that will operate the clinic slated to open by July. 

The clinic, which will be located at Camden Towne Center, represents a total investment of more than $398,000 in the county and, according to Camden officials, is expected to create four full-time and one part-time jobs with estimated annual salaries and benefits exceeding $365,000.

Charlie Bauman, Camden’s economic development director, pointed out during a public hearing on the grant Monday night that the county has been seeking to attract a health care provider for awhile.

“This is a targeted industry that the county has been working for for quite some time,” he said.

County Commissioner Clayton Riggs said it is great to be getting a doctor in Camden again. 

The clinic’s staff is slated to include a full-time nurse practitioner, a part-time board certified internal medicine practitioner and three full-time employees providing support to the providers.

Camden County offers two incentive programs: the Camden County Economic Development Incentive Grant Program and the Camden County Small Business Economic Development Grant Program. Chesapeake Regional Primary Care Clinic-Camden is the first business to take advantage of either of the grant programs.

The Small Business Economic Development Grant Program is designed to accommodate businesses with 25 or fewer employees. Each program takes into consideration such items as facility investment, capital investment and salaries and benefits.

“We introduce these local grant opportunities to existing companies evaluating expansion possibilities and with companies evaluating Camden County as a prospective investment location,” Bauman said. “We also make known any state-level grant programs that may be applicable.”

In addition to the Small Business Economic Development Grant, Camden Towne Center’s owner is offering the clinic’s operators six months free rent and contributing $50,000 toward the cost of renovations, according to Bauman.