$185 Million to Improve Rural Community Facilities and Essential Services in 32 States
WASHINGTON, June 23, 2021 – United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) Deputy Under Secretary for Rural Development Justin Maxson today announced that USDA is investing $185 million to equip, rebuild, and modernize essential services in rural areas of 32 states. The investments will benefit 3 million rural residents. In West Virginia, two key community facilities will receive a total of $6.5 million in Rural Development funding.
“The Biden-Harris Administration has made investing in infrastructure improvements a priority,” Maxson said. “These loans and grants will help rural communities invest in facilities and services that are vital to all communities, such as schools, libraries, hospitals and health clinics. They also will help rural communities continue to beat the COVID-19 pandemic as America builds back better and stronger.”
USDA Rural Development Acting West Virginia State Director Alan L. Harris said, “Investing in health and childcare is vital to maintaining vibrant rural communities. USDA Rural Development is pleased to support these efforts to improve this critical infrastructure.
In West Virginia, USDA Rural Development is investing a total of $6.5 million:
• In Buckeye, the Pocahontas Memorial Hospital will receive a Community Facilities Direct Loan in the amount of $5,700,000. This Rural Development investment will be used to renovate and expand the Pocahontas Memorial Hospital. The project will expand the rear and left side of the building to add needed space. Administrative offices and the front entrance will expand slightly and the creation of one operating room will be an improvement to the current emergency department. This proposed surgical suite will be serviced by a minimal, but necessary, addition of pre/post operational beds, staffing support areas, anesthesia workroom and storage, as well as a small central sterile storage area. It is anticipated to be located immediately adjacent to the existing emergency department so that its area and beds can be utilized in cases of multiple patients, such as a bus accident or similar catastrophe. Other departments to receive renovations and expansions include the pharmacy, radiology and lab, information technology, materials management, and the dietary department. In total, approximately 11,500 square feet of new structure will be added to the existing hospital.
• In Berkeley Springs, the Boys & Girls Club of the Eastern Panhandle Inc. will receive a Community Facilities Direct Loan in the amount of $800,000. This Rural Development investment will be used to purchase a facility to house the Boys and Girls Club's childcare services. Its childcare program is open to any child that resides in Morgan County, WV. A portion of the new facility will also be rented to a non-profit health care provider. The Boys and Girls Club has been operating successfully out of its current Berkeley Springs facility for the past 24 years.
USDA is investing in 233 projects through the Community Facilities Direct Loan and Grant Program. Of these, 74 awards, totaling $4 million, will help communities with their long-term recovery efforts following natural disasters such as hurricanes, floods and tornadoes.
The Department is making investments in Alabama, Arkansas, Arizona, California, Colorado, Florida, Georgia, Iowa, Illinois, Indiana, Kansas, Kentucky, Maine, Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri, Mississippi, North Carolina, North Dakota, Nebraska, New Mexico, New York, Oklahoma, Pennsylvania, South Carolina, Tennessee, Texas, Virginia, Washington, West Virginia, Wisconsin and Wyoming.
More than 100 types of projects are eligible for Community Facilities 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.
To learn more about Community Facilities Program funding opportunities, contact Steve Collins, Community Programs Specialist, 304-284-4885. Also see the Community Facilities Direct Loan Program Guidance Book for Applicants (PDF, 669 KB) for a detailed overview of the application process.
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/wv. If you’d like to subscribe to USDA Rural Development updates, visit our GovDelivery subscriber page.
USDA touches the lives of all Americans each day in so many positive ways. In 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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