The United States Department of Agriculture Rural Development is improving the lives of the residents of the Town of Albion, Indiana, by presenting a $22,700 Community Programs Grant to the town. The Rural Development funds were used to assist in the purchase and installation of two weather sirens. Indiana’s Severe Weather Preparedness Week was just held March 15th – 21st.
For small cities and other rural communities in Indiana, the agency’s Community Facilities Program finances essential community needs, including hospitals, daycare centers, fire trucks and equipment, storm sirens and a wide variety of other public use facilities and equipment.
Severe weather can strike unexpectedly, often resulting in serious personal consequences. Violent storms and the loss of life underscore the need for improved safety measures. The installation of storm sirens in a community offer important added safety and security whenever severe weather approaches. USDA Rural Development is able to assist communities with the resources to protect themselves and their families.
The agency’s Community Facilities Program is a great tool to assist rural communities to develop new or enhanced facilities for public safety, public service and health care. Projects can include: schools; libraries; courthouses; childcare facilities; hospitals and medical clinics; assisted living facilities; installation of storm sirens; police and fire equipment, vehicles and rescue facilities; public buildings; and transportation needs.
Through the Agency’s Community Facilities Program, USDA Rural Development is striving to ensure that such facilities are readily available to all rural communities. Community Facilities Programs utilize three financial tools to achieve this goal: the Guaranteed Loan Program, the Direct Loan Program, and the Grant Program.
The benefits of the program through grants and low-interest loans can significantly improve the quality of life for community residents.
As defined for the Community Facilities Program, a rural area may be any city or town with a population of 20,000 or less, and all unincorporated areas. Public bodies such as cities and counties, nonprofit corporations, and federally recognized Indian Tribes may be eligible applicants for the Community Facilities Program.
USDA, through its Rural Development mission area, has a portfolio of programs designed to improve the economic stability of rural communities, businesses, residents, farmers and ranchers and improve the quality of life in rural America. Visit www.rd.usda.gov/ for more information.