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USDA Partners to Invest $6.3 Million for Local Business Development

Samantha Evenson
Release Date
Sep 24, 2014

Jasper Schneider, USDA Rural Development state director, today announced the selection of six recipients for financing to support rural business activities that will increase economic growth in communities.

Boosting access to capital sparks job creation and revitalizes the rural economy,” said Schneider. “The investments announced today will help develop and expand local businesses to increase economic opportunities in rural areas.”

The $6.3 million in financing is being provided through the Rural Economic Development Loan and Grant Program (REDLG) and the Rural Microentrepreneur Assistance Program (RMAP). Under the REDLG program, USDA provides zero-interest loans to local utilities which then, in turn, relend the funds to local businesses (ultimate recipients) for projects that will create and retain employment in rural areas. 

Under RMAP, USDA provides loans to Microenterprise Development Organizations (MDOs) that, in turn, make microloans for business start-up or development to eligible microentrepreneurs defined as very small businesses with 10 or fewer employees. 

The following is the list of recipients to receive USDA funding.

REDLG Program:

  • Slope Electric Cooperative – $2 million loan. West River Veterinary Clinic, P.C. will use the funds to construct a new veterinary clinic in Hettinger. The project will help the business expand operations to improve quantity, quality and convenience of services and retail sales to the surrounding rural area. The clinic currently employs 15 people and plans to add three more employees.
  • Verendrye Electric Cooperative – $1 million loan. Gooseneck Implement will construct a new farm equipment dealership in Harvey. The business currently employs 24 people and plans to create five new positions once the project is complete.
  • Northern Plains Electric Cooperative – $1 million loan. Dakota Spirit AgEnergy, LLC will use the funds to build a new 65-million-gallon-per-year ethanol plant in Spiritwood. The plant will process 23 million bushels of corn into ethanol, as well as, distiller grains and corn oil. The project will create 36 new jobs.
  • SRT Communications – $1 million loan. Gooseneck Implement in Velva will use the funds to construct a new 39,000-square-foot farm equipment dealership. Once the project is complete, the dealership plans to add five additional employees to their staff of 28.
  • NoDak Electric Cooperative – $775,000 loan. S&S Grain, Inc. will use the funds to purchase and renovate a former ethanol plant in Walhalla to start-up a grain handling, drying and storage business. The project will create three new jobs.     


  • Oyate Community Development Corporation – $500,000 loan and a 105,000 grant. The funds will be used to create a revolving loan fund to make microloans to small rural businesses.

For more information on USDA programs, please call (701) 530-2037 or visit http://www.rurdev.usda.gov/nd.