NASHVILLE, Tenn., Dec. 11, 2023 – U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) Rural Development Tennessee State Director today announced more than $1.6 million in investments will be used to improve infrastructure, housing, and economic conditions for underserved rural and Native American communities. These projects are funded by an $81 million investment from USDA.
The investments are part of President Biden’s commitment to advance equity for all, including those who have been historically underserved, marginalized and adversely affected by persistent poverty and inequality.
“The commitment and resources our agency brings to rural people and communities, helps drive economic security and prosperity in rural Tennessee,” Armstrong said. “Today’s investments will support opportunities for people to build brighter futures and continue our efforts to work hand-in-hand with local organizations to keep our rural residents in safe, reliable homes.”
USDA is making investments in several programs specifically designed to bring federal funding and resources to people and communities in underserved rural areas. The projects will benefit hundreds of thousands of people in 42 states, Puerto Rico and the Marshall Islands.
- The University of Tennessee is receiving a $364,502 Delta Health Care Services Grant to provide funds for technical assistance and training to combat sickle cell disease in the Delta Region. The purpose of this program is to address the continued unmet health needs in the region through cooperation among health care professionals, institutions of higher education, and research entities.
- The University of Tennessee at Martin is receiving a $407,722 Delta Health Care Services Grant to provide training to police officers and social workers in the Delta Region. This project will address the unmet health needs of individuals in the region through cooperation amongst health care professionals, the university, and other entities.
The investments also include more than $19 million to help low-income and very low-income residents in every part of the country repair and rehabilitate their homes.
- Loudon County is receiving a $126,500 Housing Preservation Grant to help 16 qualified very low and low-income homeowners make needed repairs or improvements to their existing homes.
- Clinch-Powell Resource Conservation & Development is receiving a $200,000 Housing Preservation Grant to help 20 qualified very low and low-income homeowners make needed repairs or improvements to their existing homes in Claiborne, Cocke, Grainger, Hamblen, Hancock, Hawkins, Jefferson, Union, Campbell, Cumberland, Morgan, Putnam, Scott, White and Bledsoe counties.
- Knoxville Leadership Foundation is receiving a $228,500 Housing Preservation Grant to help 40 qualified very low and low-income homeowners make needed repairs or improvements to their homes in Knox County, Tennessee.
- East Tennessee Development District is receiving a $180,490 Housing Preservation Grant to help 16 qualified very low and low-income homeowners make needed repairs or improvements to their homes in Campbell, Claiborne, Cocke, Grainger, Hamblen, Jefferson, Morgan, and Scott counties.
- Appalachia Service Project is receiving a $50,000 Housing Preservation Grant to assist eight qualified very low and low-income homeowners whose homes obtained damages due to a natural disaster. This will entail a variety of critical home repairs for owner-occupied homes in Washington County, a Presidentially Declared Disaster Area.
- Aid to Distressed Families of Appalachian Counties Inc. is receiving a $56,000 Housing Preservation Grant to help three qualified very low and low-income homeowners make needed repairs or improvements to their homes in Anderson County, Tennessee.
In addition to Tennessee, the awards announced today will help finance projects in Alabama, Alaska, Arizona, Arkansas, California, Colorado, Connecticut, Florida, Georgia, Iowa, Illinois, Kentucky, Louisiana, Massachusetts, Maryland, Maine, Michigan, Minnesota, Mississippi, Missouri, Montana, Nebraska, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New Mexico, New York, North Carolina, North Dakota, Ohio, Oklahoma, Oregon, Pennsylvania, South Carolina, South Dakota, Texas, Utah, Virginia, Vermont, Washington, West Virginia, Wisconsin, Puerto Rico and the Marshall Islands/Micronesia.
Investments are being made through these programs: Water and Waste Facility Loans and Grants to Alleviate Health Risks for Colonias, Water and Waste Facility Loans and Grants to Alleviate Health Risks on Tribal Lands, Delta Health Care Grants, Socially Disadvantaged Groups Grants, Housing Preservation Grants, Rural and Native Alaskan Village Grants, Tribal College Initiative Grants and Appalachian Regional Commission Grants, which USDA administers as part of a Memorandum of Understanding.
New Web Resources for Rural Communities
USDA Rural Development today also unveiled two new web resources that underscore the agency’s mission to ensure all people have equitable access to federal programs.
A new history webpage traces USDA Rural Development’s evolution from the Great Depression and New Deal to the present, highlighting the many ways the agency supports efforts to create prosperity in rural communities.
One of the agency’s more recent initiatives, the Rural Partners Network (RPN), has brought together a coalition of 24 federal agencies that offer programs and funding designed specifically for rural communities.
A new feature on Rural.gov makes it easier to find these federal resources in one place. The Find Programs and Opportunities tool includes hundreds of millions of dollars in financing and technical assistance opportunities that are easy to search, filter and find.
The information will help people in rural areas access funding for a variety of business, health care, housing, community and economic development needs.
Under the leadership of 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. For more information, visit www.rd.usda.gov.
USDA touches the lives of all Americans each day in so many positive ways. Under the leadership of 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.
To subscribe to USDA Rural Development updates, visit the GovDelivery subscriber page.
USDA is an equal opportunity provider, employer and lender.