Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack announced that USDA is accepting applications for up to $1.7 billion to fund projects that help spur business activity and economic growth in rural communities.
The money is part of the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act and is designed to create and save jobs and help rural communities grow and prosper.
“The Recovery Act funds will help businesses get access to the capital they need to launch and expand their businesses and help bring additional jobs to America’s small cities and towns,” Vilsack said. “President Obama and I are committed to building strong rural communities by helping businesses grow so we can put people back to work.”
The funding will be made available through USDA Rural Development’s Business and Industry Guaranteed Loan program, which supports the development of private businesses. Eligible applicants include cooperative organizations, corporations, partnerships, nonprofit groups; federally recognized Indian tribes, public bodies and individuals.
The funds will be targeted to creating and retaining quality jobs and serving difficult to reach populations, and areas hardest hit by the current economic downturn.
USDA will accept applications for this Business and Industry Guaranteed Loan program until Sept. 15, 2010, or until all funds are expended. Recovery Act funding will be available through Sept. 30, 2010.
For information on eligibility criteria and for application assistance, please contact Rural Development office at 812 Progress Drive, Farmington, or by calling Kevin Hinkbein at 573-756-6413 ext. 4.
More information about USDA’s Recovery Act efforts is available at http://www.usda.gov/recovery. More information about the Federal government’s efforts on the Recovery Act is available at www.recovery.gov.
USDA Rural Development’s mission is to increase economic opportunity and improve the quality of life for rural residents. Rural Development fosters growth in home ownership, finances business development, and supports the creation of critical community and technology infrastructure. Further information on any of the rural development programs is available on USDA Rural Development’s Web site at http://www.rurdev.usda.gov/mo.