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USDA Invests in Community Facilities Improvements for 3.3 Million Rural Americans in 24 States

Chris Hart
Release Date

U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) Rural Development’s Illinois State Director, Douglas Wilson announced that they would be investing over $46 million in numerous projects to improve community facilities and provide essential services for rural residents across the State.

“Today’s announcement encompasses needed roadway improvements, senior care, and hospital services. When it comes to a community’s wellbeing, USDA RD’s Community Facility program helps communities not only meet their current needs but also prepares them for the future” Wilson said.  

USDA is making the investments through the Community Facilities Direct Loan Program. 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.

Here are a few examples of local investments:

Hamilton County: This Rural Development investment of $3,400,000 will be used to surface 23.5 miles of gravel roads located in various areas throughout Hamilton County, Ill. Once completed, the resurfaced roads will provide a foundation that will support vehicle traffic in all weather conditions and will better serve the traveling public in Hamilton County.

Randolph County: This Rural Development investment of $56,000 will be used to complete the funding needed to replace the roof on the Randolph County Care Center. The facility is a 100-bed skilled nursing facility located in Sparta, Ill. It provides long-term and short-term stays, as well as physical, speech, occupational therapy and counseling services to residents of all ages in Randolph County

Fairfield Memorial Hospital Association: This Rural Development investment of $19,900,000 will be used to renovate and expand the existing Fairfield Memorial Hospital. Construction includes a new three-story addition to the existing hospital which is approximately 46,363 square feet.  Portions of their 25-bed critical access hospital will also be renovated. This project will offer additional space for mental health services, skilled care, rehabilitation and orthopedic services. Renovations will improve services and provide better working space for surgeons and staff.

Morrison Community Hospital District: This Rural Development Investment of a $19,200,000 CF Direct Loan and $4,000,000 of additional guaranteed funding will be used for the expansion and renovation of the Morrison Community Hospital District. It will establish a new emergency services department, a mental health room, relocate the business and administrative offices, add a surgical suite to the surgical area, remodel the front entrance and lab services department, provide a new elevator, replace the roof and add additional parking and landscaping. The project ensures adequate health care services for the citizens of Morrison.

More than 100 types of projects are eligible for Community Facilities program 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.

The investments announced today are in Alabama, Florida, Hawaii, Idaho, Illinois, Kansas, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri, Montana, Nebraska, New Jersey, Nevada, New York, North Carolina, North Dakota, Ohio, Pennsylvania, South Carolina, Tennessee, Texas, Utah and Virginia. USDA had $2.8 billion available for Community Facilities direct loans and grants in fiscal year 2019. USDA will make additional funding announcements in coming weeks.

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.

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).