Trump Administration Invests $1.6 Billion in Rural Electric Infrastructure in 21 States

Charron Culp
Release Date
Jun 22, 2020

NASHVILLE, Tenn., June 22, 2020 - The Trump Administration today announced that the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) is investing $1.6 billion to build or improve rural electric infrastructure in 21 states. Tennessee Rural Development State Director along with Kentucky State Director Hilda Legg are pleased to announce 12 rural counties across the Tennessee-Kentucky border will benefit from improvements to electric infrastructure.

“We are pleased to be making investments in Cumberland Electric Membership Corporation,” Tracy said. “Reliable and modern infrastructure, including electric infrastructure and smart grid technologies, is a cornerstone for prosperity in our rural communities.”


USDA is providing loans and loan guarantees to rural electric cooperatives and utilities through the Electric Loan Program. The recipients will use the funds to build and improve 9,138 miles of electric transmission and distribution line, benefiting 1 million rural residents and businesses. The loans include nearly $386 million for investments in smart grid technology, which uses digital communications to detect and react to local changes in electricity usage.

The investments announced today are being made in Alaska, Arizona, Arkansas, Colorado, Florida, Georgia, Idaho, Illinois, Indiana, Kentucky, Louisiana, Michigan, Mississippi, New Mexico, North Dakota, Oklahoma, South Carolina, Texas, Washington and Wisconsin.

In Tennessee:

  • Cumberland EMC will receive a $93 million loan to connect 9,676 consumers and build 160 miles of line. This loan includes $58,866,179 in smart grid technologies. Cumberland, headquartered in Clarksville, Tenn., serves approximately 98,000 customers, across 8,078 miles of line north and west of Nashville, straddling the Tennessee-Kentucky border. It serves seven counties in Tennessee and five counties in Kentucky.

USDA Rural Development provides loans and grants to help expand economic opportunities and create jobs 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 areas. For more information, visit

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USDA is an equal opportunity provider, employer and lender.