New Schools, Health Clinics and Public Safety Facilities
Will Benefit 3.5 Million People
WASHINGTON, Oct. 28, 2020 – The Trump Administration today announced that the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) is investing $871 million to improve critical community facilities to benefit 3.5 million rural residents in 43 states and Guam.
“Rural America needs safe, modern community infrastructure to help residents and businesses achieve greater prosperity and have access to essential services,” USDA Deputy Under Secretary for Rural Development Bette Brand said. “Under the leadership of President Trump and Agriculture Secretary Perdue, USDA continues to be a strong partner to rural communities, because we know that when rural America thrives, all of America thrives.”
Brand announced essential community projects today in Alabama, Arkansas, Arizona, California, Colorado, Delaware, Florida, Georgia, Guam, Hawaii, Idaho, Iowa, Indiana, Illinois, Kansas, Kentucky, Louisiana, Maine, Maryland, Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri, Mississippi, Montana, Nebraska, Nevada, New Hampshire, New York, North Carolina, North Dakota, Ohio, Oregon, Pennsylvania, South Carolina, South Dakota, Tennessee, Texas, Utah, Vermont, Virginia, Washington, West Virginia, Wisconsin and Wyoming.
USDA is funding 256 projects through the Community Facilities Direct Loan and Grant Program. These investments will be for such purposes as to build or upgrade schools, libraries, clinics and public safety facilities. For example:
- In Ohio, the Big Walnut Joint Fire District will use a $2.3 million loan to build a fire station. It currently operates two facilities: one in Marengo, and another in Chesterville. Built more than a century ago, the Chesterville Fire Station no longer supports modern-day firefighting operations. The sole vehicle bay lacks the proper height clearance, which has led to vehicle and equipment damage. Additionally, the station's frontage on State Route 314 creates a safety hazard for vehicles leaving or entering the grounds. The new station will be built just north of the old facility on a two-acre site acquired from the local school district. It will feature three bays, a kitchen, bunk room, gear storage room, bathrooms, a decontamination room, offices for administrative work, a training room and a tornado shelter – all meeting modern code and accessibility standards.
- In Michigan, the Bay Mills Indian Community will use a $6 million loan to construct a 34,000-square-foot medical office building in the Eastern Upper Peninsula in Chippewa County. The Bay Mills Indian Community Reservation is located in a federally designated Medically Underserved Area and a Health Professional Shortage Area for primary care, dental and mental health. More than 20 percent of the community’s residents are people with disabilities. This investment will help provide medical, dental, pharmacy, lab, imaging, behavioral health, optical, community health and traditional healing services.
- The Ridgeview Global Studies Academy in Davenport, Fla., will use a $4.9 million loan to construct a 21,000-square-foot, two-story building of classrooms, a science lab, a multi-purpose/dining area and administrative offices. This facility will be connected to the campus by a covered walkway. The new facility will have space for 250 students in grades nine and 10.
- In East Baton Rouge Parish, La., Hospital Service District 1 is receiving a $61 million loan to renovate 37,000 square feet of the hospital and add an 82,000-square-foot, four-story medical tower. The addition will include 48 acute patient care rooms, surgical and intensive care units, nurse’s stations and administrative areas. The hospital employs more than 850 people. The expanded facility will provide a variety of specialized care to better serve the community.
More than 100 types of projects are eligible for Community Facilities funding. Eligible applicants include municipalities, public bodies, nonprofit organizations and federally recognized Native American tribes. Projects must be in rural areas with a population of 20,000 or less.
Interested parties should contact their USDA Rural Development state office for information about additional funding, application procedures and eligibility details. Also see the Community Facilities Direct Loan Program Guidance Book for Applicants, a detailed overview of the application process.
USDA Rural Development provides loans and grants to help expand economic opportunities and create jobs 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 areas. For more information, visit www.rd.usda.gov.
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USDA is an equal opportunity provider, employer and lender.