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The Biden-Harris Administration Invests Over $400,000 to Provide Technical Assistance for the Rural Energy for America Program in North Dakota

Chris Freeman
Release Date

BISMARCK, N.D., Nov. 29, 2023 – U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) Rural Development State Director Erin Oban announced that USDA is investing over $400,000 to make technical assistance available to agricultural producers and rural small businesses applying to the Rural Energy for America Program.

“Since the passage of the Inflation Reduction Act and, with it, an expansion of grant funds available through the Rural Energy for America Program (REAP), we have experienced a significant increase of interest in and applications to this USDA Rural Development program,” said Oban. “To help more North Dakota ag producers and rural small business owners in accessing the federal resources made available through President Biden’s Investing in America priorities, we value the work and technical assistance that will be made available in awarding this technical assistance grant to Realizing Rural LLC.”

Realizing Rural LLC will use a $427,000 grant to provide technical assistance to agricultural producers and rural small businesses. Realizing Rural, LLC will help with application assistance, provide information on REAP Energy Efficiency Improvements & Renewable Energy Systems (EEI/RES), promote energy assessments and audits, help with filing SAM/UEI, assist with planning construction and development, and assist with completion of environmental documentation. This grant will be used to help a minimum of fifteen REAP applications per year for three years in ND.

Background: Rural Energy for America Technical Assistance Grant Program (REAP TAG)

The Rural Energy for America Technical Assistance Grant Program is designed to assist eligible REAP applicants with technical assistance. Priority will be given to applicants in distressed or disadvantaged communities and for applicants using underutilized technology or projects under $20,000.

REAP TAG funds may be used for, but is not limited to:

  1. Assisting Agricultural Producers or Rural Small Businesses to apply for assistance under REAP for Energy Efficiency Improvements, or Renewable Energy Systems.
  2. Providing information on how to improve the energy efficiency of the operations and to use Renewable Energy technologies and resources in their operations.
  3. Conducting and promoting Energy Assessments and audits as defined in 7 CFR 4280.103. 
  4. Preparing a technical report in accordance with 7 CFR 4280.110(g). 
  5. Assisting with filing for System Award Management (SAM) and Unique Entity Identifier (UEI) registrations. 
  6. Assisting with completing a REAP grant application in accordance with 7 CFR 4280.116. 
  7. Assisting with planning construction and development in accordance with 7 CFR 4280.125. 
  8. Assisting with completion of environmental reports and/or documentation required for submittal of applications.

USDA touches the lives of all Americans each day in so many positive ways. In the Biden-Harris Administration, USDA is transforming America’s food system with a greater focus on more resilient local and regional food production, fairer markets for all producers, ensuring access to safe, healthy and nutritious food in all communities, building new markets and streams of income for farmers and producers using climate-smart food and forestry practices, making historic investments in infrastructure and clean-energy capabilities in rural America, and committing to equity across the Department by removing systemic barriers and building a workforce more representative of America. To learn more, visit www.usda.gov.

Under the Biden-Harris Administration, Rural Development provides loans and grants to help expand economic opportunities, create jobs and improve the quality of life for millions of Americans in rural areas. This assistance supports infrastructure improvements; business development; housing; community facilities such as schools, public safety and health care; and high-speed internet access in rural, tribal and high-poverty areas.

To subscribe to USDA Rural Development updates, visit GovDelivery subscriber page.