USDA Rural Housing Service Administrator Bruce Lammers today announced that the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) is investing $52 million in 45 community facilities projects that will benefit nearly 200,000 rural residents in 16 states.
“Under the leadership of President Trump and Agriculture Secretary Sonny Perdue, USDA is committed to partnering with rural communities to build the facilities that provide state-of-the-art services to those who depend on them,” Lammers said. “Rural areas thrive when modern and accessible education, health care, public safety and municipal services are available. This provides a foundation for growth and prosperity.”
USDA is making the investments and has additional funding available through the Community Facilities Direct Loan Program. Interested parties should contact their USDA Rural Development state office for application and eligibility details.
The 45 projects that USDA announced today are in Alabama, Arizona, Colorado, Georgia, Illinois, Missouri, Nebraska, New York, North Carolina, Ohio, Pennsylvania, South Carolina, South Dakota, Tennessee, Virginia and Wisconsin. In South Carolina:
• Sandhill Medical Foundation, Inc., Lugoff, S.C., will use a $2,920,500 loan to expand the Sandhill Medical Facility. The project includes a 12,770 square foot building and improvements to an adjacent 1.89-acre site. Upon completion, the buildings will connect and provide more efficient staff access to both facilities. The proposed facility will be geared primarily toward pediatrics, leaving the current facility to handle mostly general practice for adult patients. In addition, the project will include more exam rooms with support space, more efficient use of existing space, improved layout and work flow in certain areas, and continued in-house services.
More than 100 types of projects are eligible for funding under USDA’s Community Facilities program. 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.
USDA will make additional funding announcements in coming weeks. Congress appropriated $2.8 billion for Community Facilities direct loans and grants in fiscal year 2019.
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/sc.
In April 2017, President Donald J. Trump established the Interagency Task Force on Agriculture and Rural Prosperity to identify legislative, regulatory and policy changes that could promote agriculture and prosperity in rural communities. In January 2018, Secretary Perdue presented the Task Force’s findings to President Trump. These findings included 31 recommendations to align the federal government with state, local and tribal governments to take advantage of opportunities that exist in rural America. Increasing investments in rural infrastructure is a cornerstone recommendation of the task force.
To view the report in its entirety, please view the Report to the President of the United States from the Task Force on Agriculture and Rural Prosperity (PDF, 5.4 MB). In addition, to view the categories of the recommendations, please view the Rural Prosperity infographic (PDF, 190 KB).