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USDA Invests Nearly $5.6 Million to Create Economic Opportunities, Expand Access to Water Infrastructure and Rehabilitate Homes for Underserved Rural People Across California

Monica Telles
Davis, CA
Release Date

DAVIS, Calif., Dec. 16, 2022 – USDA Rural Development California State Director Maria Gallegos Herrera announced today that USDA is investing nearly $5.6 million to expand access to economic opportunities, housing and water infrastructure for underserved people who live and work in rural California.

“USDA Rural Development in California and the Biden-Harris Administration are committed to increasing equity in and for rural communities,” said State Director Gallegos Herrera. “One of the most direct and effective ways we can deliver on this commitment is by making investments in communities where they are needed the most. These investments of nearly $5.6 million help advance our work to ensure California rural and Tribal communities have access to safe drinking water, affordable housing and economic opportunities.”

Today’s announcement includes 15 projects to help ensure that people living in rural California have equitable access to the infrastructure and economic opportunities they deserve. Examples include:

Democracy At Work Institute is receiving $175,000 through USDA’s Socially-Disadvantaged Groups Grant Program to provide technical assistance to socially-disadvantaged cooperatives and work with organizing groups made up of socially-disadvantaged individuals. These groups include Native American and Native Alaskan organizations working on cooperative projects mainly in rural California, Alaska, and South Dakota. This investment will help create 15 and save five rural jobs in California. Democracy At Work Institute anticipates it will assist at least seven co-ops which will create several rural jobs.

Fresno County will use a $200,000 Housing Preservation Grant to make health and safety improvements to homes for low- and very low-income households in Fresno County and in nearby unincorporated areas.

Big Valley Band of Pomo Indians in Lake County is receiving nearly $3.2 million to construct a new drinking water treatment facility. Tribal residents currently rely on an aging and unreliable water infrastructure. Once finished, the new facility will provide reliable, safe drinking water to Tribal residents. This project is funded through USDA’s Water & Waste Disposal Grants to Alleviate Health Risks on Tribal Lands and Colonias.

Today’s announcements are part of a larger national announcement detailing $102 million invested in similar projects nationwide. To read about all 15 California projects view additional information online.

Under 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/ca.

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