SEARCH - Special Evaluation Assistance for Rural Communities and Households in Michigan


What does this program do?

This program helps very small, financially distressed rural communities with predevelopment feasibility studies, design and technical assistance on proposed water and waste disposal projects.

Who may apply?

  • Most state and local governmental entities
  • Nonprofits
  • Federally recognized tribes

What is an eligible area?

Areas to be served must be rural and financially distressed:

  • Rural areas with a population of 2,500 or less
  • Have a median household income below the poverty line or less than 80 percent of the statewide non-metropolitan median household income based on latest Census data

How may the funds be used?

To pay predevelopment planning costs, including:

  • Feasibility studies to support applications for funding water or waste disposal projects
  • Preliminary design and engineering analysis
  • Technical assistance for the development of an application for financial assistance

Are there additional requirements?

The predevelopment planning costs must be related to a proposed project that meets the following requirements:

  • Construct, enlarge, extend or improve rural water, sanitary sewage, solid waste disposal and storm wastewater disposal facilities
  • Construct or relocate public buildings, roads, bridges, fences or utilities, and to make other public improvements necessary for the successful operation or protection of facilities
  • Relocate private buildings, roads, bridges, fences, or utilities, and other private improvements necessary for the successful operation or protection of facilities

How do we get started?

  • Applications for this program are accepted year round through your local RD office.
  • Program resources are available online (i.e., forms, guidance, certifications, etc.).

What governs this program?

  • Code of Federal Regulations, Title 7, Part 1774 - 7 CFR 1774
  • Section 306 of the Consolidated Farm and Rural Development Act

Why does USDA Rural Development do this?

To help very small, financially distressed rural communities extend and improve water and waste treatment facilities that serve local households and businesses.

NOTE: Please select your state in the dropdown menu above to find the state office contact information and speak to a program specialist before attempting to fill out any forms or applications. This will save you time in completing your application.

National Architect Requirements:

There are no other architect, engineering or environmental requirements at the national level. If there are additional state-specific requirements they will be listed above. 

There are no other additional requirements at the national level. If there are additional state-specific requirements they will be listed above.

There are currently no events scheduled.

USDA RD State Office
3001 Coolidge Rd.
Suite 200
East Lansing, MI 48823
517-324-5190 | Fax 855-813-7741

Jason Allen
State Director

Public Information Coordinator
Alec Lloyd
517-324-5204

Community Programs Staff
517-324-5156

Single Family Housing Staff
517-324-5210

Business Programs Staff
517-324-5157

Multi-Family Housing Staff
517-324-5142

Gladstone Area Office
2003 Minneapolis Ave.
Gladstone, MI 49783
906-428-1060 Ext. 4

Sault Ste. Marie Office
2847 Ashmun
Sault Ste. Marie, MI 49783
906-632-9611 Ext. 4

Traverse City Area Office
1501 Cass St., Suite A
Traverse City, MI 49684
231-941-0951 Ext. 4

West Branch Office
240 W. Wright St.
West Branch, MI 48661
989-345-5470 Ext. 4

Caro Area Office
1075 Cleaver Rd.
Caro, MI 48723
989-673-8173 Ext. 6

Grand Rapids Area Office
3260 Eagle Park Dr., Suite 107
Grand Rapids, MI 49525
616-942-4111 Ext. 6

Paw Paw Office
1035 East Michigan Ave., Suite A
Paw Paw, MI 49079
269-657-7055 Ext. 4

Mason Area Office
525 N. Okemos St., Suite B
Mason, MI 48854
517-676-4644 Ext. 4

Flint Office
1525 North Elms Rd.
Flint, MI 48532
810-230-8766 Ext. 4