USDA Seeks Application to Support Rural Businesses and Create Jobs

Dana Kleinsasser
South Dakota
Release Date
Apr 01, 2015

The South Dakota Acting State Director for the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) Rural Development, Bruce Jones, announced that USDA is seeking applications for grants to support rural businesses and help create jobs through the Rural Business Development Grant Program (RBDG).
Approximately $150,000 is expected to be made available in South Dakota under the RBDG program.  The grants will be awarded competitively.  Eligible applicants include public bodies, government entities, Indian tribes, and nonprofit organizations.  This year’s announcement also includes a Native American set aside that is funded through a national competition and is separate from South Dakota’s state allocation.

Congress established the RBDG program under the 2014 Farm Bill. The new program combines USDA’s former Rural Business Enterprise Grant (RBEG) and Rural Business Opportunity Grant (RBOG) programs. The new program, like its predecessors, is designed to assist with the startup or expansion of small and emerging private businesses and/or nonprofits in rural communities.

These grants can be used to provide technical assistance and in some cases to establish revolving loan funds; to support rural distance learning programs that provide educational or job training; to acquire or develop land, buildings, plants and equipment; and to build or improve access roads, parking areas, utility extensions, and water and waste disposal facilities. There are no substantive programmatic or operational changes to the RBEG and RBOG programs as a result of this consolidation.

For additional information, see page 15665 of the March 25 Federal Register.

Grants made before the implementation of the RBDG program will continue to be governed by the terms of the applicable RBOG and RBEG regulations in effect at the time the grants were made.

If you are planning to submit an application in South Dakota, we encourage you to contact a local Business & Cooperative Program Specialist or the State Office for more details about the application requirements and process:

Dana Kleinsasser, Rural Business & Cooperative Programs Director (Huron State Office)
Phone: (605) 352-1142
Fax: (855) 262-1940
Dave Franssens, Specialist (Sioux Falls)
Phone: (605) 330-4515, Ext. 128
Fax: (855) 262-1944
Darlene Bresson, Specialist (Watertown)
Phone: (605) 886-8202, Ext. 120
Fax: (855) 262-1945
Clark Guthmiller, Specialist (Pierre)
Phone: (605) 224-8870, Ext. 120
Fax: (855) 262-1942
Gary Wedel, Specialist (Mitchell)
Phone: (605) 996-1564, Ext. 105
Fax: (855) 262-1941
Hettianne Cekalla, Specialist (Rapid City)
Phone: (605) 342-0301, Ext. 118
Fax: (855) 262-1943

If applying under Native American set-aside, applications must be received by USDA Rural Development State Office no later than 4:30 p.m. on Friday, May 8, 2015 and all other non set-aside applications must be received by USDA Rural Development State Office no later than 4:30 p.m. on Friday, June 5, 2015.

President Obama’s plan for rural America has brought about historic investment and resulted in stronger rural communities. Under the President's leadership, these investments in housing, community facilities, businesses and infrastructure have empowered rural America to continue leading the way - strengthening America's economy, small towns and rural communities.