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USDA Awards over $400,000 to Create Economic Opportunities, Expand Access to Water Infrastructure and Rehabilitate Homes for Underserved Rural People Across Illinois

Jenny Warning
Release Date

CHAMPAIGN, Ill., Dec. 20, 2022 – U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) Rural Development State Director for Illinois Betsy Dirksen Londrigan today announced that USDA is investing $424,300 to expand access to housing and water infrastructure for underserved rural areas.  Today’s investments will create economic opportunities and improve the lives of hundreds people in rural Illinois.

“Equal access to all federal opportunities – especially for populations in the most remote areas of the state, regardless of background or financial status – is central to USDA’s priorities,” Dirksen Londrigan said. “Helping a family affordably repair their home, providing technical assistance to expand economic opportunities for underserved communities, and ensuring all individuals have access to modern community infrastructure are just some of the ways that USDA is working to provide this access. When we invest in ALL rural populations and communities, we build opportunities for everyone.”


Today’s investments are part of a nationwide announcement recently made by the Under Secretary for Rural Development Xochitl Torres Small of more than 263 projects that reflect USDA’s commitment to ensure that people living in rural America have equitable access to the infrastructure and economic opportunities they deserve.

 In Illinois:

  • The Western Illinois University Board of Trustees is using a $141,500 Socially Disadvantaged Groups Grant to help operate the Illinois Cooperative Development Center (ICDG). Funding will provide an array of technical assistance to rural cooperatives across Illinois, focusing on 10 rural communities to receive one-on-one attention through workshops, presentations, and grant writing assistance.
  • The Crosswalk Community Action Agency will use a Housing Preservation Grant for $142,900 to rehabilitate approximately 12 very low and low-income homeowners.
  • The Western Illinois Regional Council-Community Action Agency was awarded a $140,000 Housing Preservation Grant to repair 25 very low-income homeowners in partnership with ($650,000) in leveraged financing.

These investments are in addition to the recent expansion of the Rural Partners Network (RPN), which is central to President Biden’s commitment to ensure all rural people can benefit from federal resources. Led by USDA with support from more than 20 federal agencies and commissions, RPN is part of an all-of-government strategy to champion rural people and places, including Native American communities. Stay tuned for expansion of RPN into Illinois communities.

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 learn more, visit https://www.rd.usda.gov/il.

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


USDA is an equal opportunity provider, employer and lender.