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USDA Rural Development to Fund New Projects in 14 Underserved Virginia Communities

Barbara Bowen
Release Date

Nearly $600,00 Awarded for Public Safety and Home Rehabilitation

RICHMOND, Va., Dec. 16, 2022 – Fourteen Virginia localities will directly benefit from a U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) $102 million investment in expanding access to housing and water infrastructure for socially disadvantaged citizens in rural communities across the nation.

These investments underscore the Biden-Harris Administration’s commitment to ensuring that people living in these areas have equitable access to the infrastructure and economic opportunities they deserve. The 263 projects in 47 states and American Samoa will help improve the lives of hundreds of thousands of people.

“USDA invests in rural America because we know a strong community is rooted in its people,” USDA Rural Development Under Secretary Xochitl Torres Small said. “Thanks to the leadership of President Biden, Vice President Harris and Agriculture Secretary Vilsack, USDA can help invest in opportunity and prosperity for all people, regardless of background or financial status, who make up the character and personality of our great country’s rural lands.”

The Virginia projects were awarded through two programs as outlined below: 

  • Grayson County is receiving a total of $116,600 for two Community Facility Disaster grants to replace high mileage/unreliable law enforcement and sanitation vehicles. The county will purchase two police cars and two garbage trucks to help ensure continuity of services.
  • Appalachia Service Project, Inc., is receiving a $110,000 Housing Preservation Grant that will be used to assist with critical repairs to 15 owner-occupied homes in Virginia’s persistent poverty areas of Lee, Wise and Dickenson counties.
  • Renovation Alliance’s $157,500 Housing Preservation Grant will help as many as 70 homeowners in Floyd, Craig, Franklin, Roanoke and Botetourt counties remove safety and health hazards from their homes. The restoration project includes, but is not limited to, new roofs, electrical and plumbing repairs, heating and cooling and structural issues.
  • The Thomas Jefferson Planning District will use its $215,000 Housing Preservation Grant to subcontract with local housing non-profit organizations for emergency repairs, rehabilitation and home safety modifications for low-income rural homeowners in Albemarle, Fluvanna, Greene, Louisa and Nelson counties.

“We all need a safe place to call home and public safety and sanitation services are critical to the well-being of every community,” said Perry Hickman, USDA Rural Development Virginia State Director. “We’re pleased to work through partners to connect Virginians with the resources to meet those needs.”

The funding is being provided in addition to resources offered through the recent expansion of the USDA-led Rural Partners Network (RPN), which is a cornerstone of President Biden’s plan to ensure that all rural people can benefit from federal resources. RPN is part of an all-of-government strategy involving more than 20 federal agencies and commissions to champion rural people and places, including Native American communities.

Under the leadership of 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

USDA touches the lives of all Americans each day in so many positive ways. Under the leadership of the Biden-Harris Administration, USDA is transforming America’s food system with a greater focus on more resilient local and regional food production, fairer markets for all producers, ensuring access to safe, healthy and nutritious food in all communities, building new markets and streams of income for farmers and producers using climate-smart food and forestry practices, making historic investments in infrastructure and clean energy capabilities in rural America, and committing to equity across the Department by removing systemic barriers and building a workforce more representative of America. To learn more, visit www.usda.gov

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