Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack today announced support for projects to improve the quality of life in rural communities across the country.


"USDA's support for these projects reflects our commitment to ensuring that rural communities can create jobs, attract businesses and provide necessary services to their residents," Vilsack said. "USDA Rural Development continues to work with rural communities to help them develop quality health care services, modern library facilities and school buildings, and reliable first responder equipment and services to ensure that people who live in rural areas have access to critical infrastructure."


The 135 projects in 40 states, Puerto Rico and the Western Pacific are being financed through $234 million in loans and grants from USDA Rural Development's Community Facilities Program. Eligible projects include essential community facilities for public use in rural areas such as fire protection, safety, health care, education and many other community needs.


In New Mexico, the EMW Gas Association has been selected for a $5 million loan to expand natural gas distribution to rural residents of Torrance County in the central part of the state. EMW plans to build 29 miles of steel, high-pressured gas pipeline. The construction will provide service to rural customers who currently lack natural gas.


The Charles Cole Memorial Hospital in Pennsylvania has been selected for a $2.5 million loan to expand and renovate the emergency department and improve the heating, ventilation and cooling system. Currently, the hospital, which is located in rural Coudersport, Pa., has an open emergency room area and poor ventilation. The renovations will add private emergency rooms, update the facility and provide consistent heating and air conditioning.


The M.O.T. Charter School, Inc., in New Castle, Del., has been selected for a $2.8 million Rural Development loan to expand its existing facility by 19,000 square feet. A new wing will include a library, two additional classrooms, a lobby, a multi-purpose area, a booster room, and bathrooms.


Through the years, Rural Development's Community Facilities Program has been a vital funding source for many rural communities. For example, in 2010, Rural Development awarded a Recovery Act direct loan and a Recovery Act grant to the Dillon County School Facilities Corporation in South Carolina to finance new construction or renovations for schools in three school districts. The funding is leveraged with $7.5 million from other sources. Dillon County will use the funds to construct a new pre-kindergarten through second grade facility in Latta and a new middle school near Dillon, as well as to renovate and expand an existing high school in Lake View. These new and upgraded facilities will serve more than 4,000 students.


A complete list of projects that were selected for funding is below. Funding for each project is contingent upon the recipient meeting the terms of the loan or grant agreement.


Alaska


Interior Region Emergency Medical Services Council, Inc. - $59,150 grant to purchase emergency medical services equipment


Alabama


Town of Brilliant - $90,300 grant to purchase a fire truck
Town of Collinsville - $36,300 grant to renovate the second floor of the library


Arkansas


City of Mt. Ida - $75,000 grant to purchase a fire pumper truck
City of Rector - $50,000 grant to purchase a fire pumper truck
City of Elaine - $50,000 grant to purchase a fire pumper truck
City of Kensett - $50,000 grant to purchase a fire pumper truck


Arizona


Verde Valley Ambulance - $497,000 guaranteed loan to refinance debt and remodel an ambulance facility
Camp Verde Fire District - $2,725,000 direct loan to construct a fire station


California


The Pixley Foundation - $50,000 grant for a community and technology center
Garberville Town Square, Inc. - $49,431 grant to renovate the Farmers Market Town Square
Lake County Fire Protection District - $48,750 grant to purchase rapid response vehicles & equipment


Colorado


La Veta Library District - $25,000 grant to install on-demand water heaters and ceiling fans
Bent County - $25,000 grant to upgrade energy efficiency
Rio Grande County Library District - $25,000 grant to install solar panels in two libraries
East Yuma County Historical Society - $10,000 repair grant
Haxtun Hospital District - $7,318 grant to upgrade the fire supression system in a hospital


Connecticut


Regional YMCA of Western CT - $210,600 guaranteed loan to make repairs


Delaware


MOT Charter School Inc $2,775,000 direct loan to build a library and classrooms
Indian River Volunteer Fire Company - $50,000 grant to purchase wildland firefighting equipment and a utility response vehicle


Georgia


Town of Rentz - $165,000 direct loan and $50,000 grant to purchase a pumper truck


Hawaii


Friends of Kona Pacific Public Charter School $3,000,000 loan to acquire land and expand the campus


Iowa


City of Clearfield - $100,000 grant for street improvements
Mahaska County Hospital - $23,015,000 direct loan to expand the hospital
City of Liscomb - $4,751 grant to purchase bunker gear for the fire department
City of Somers - $27,800 grant to purchase library equipment and make improvements to the library
Bedford Community School District - $15,400 grant to resurface the school playground area
City of Griswold - $50,000 grant to renovate and expand the library
City of Bedford - $12,800 grant to install a new HVAC system in the library, and install a bathroom accessible to people with disabilities
City of Blakesburg - $3,500 grant to make building updates
Mount Ayr Community School - $50,000 grant to expand a parking lot
City of Sabula $355,084 direct loan and $90,000 grant to make repairs to and rehabilitate a levee system


Illinois


Village of Tamaroa - $67,500 grant to re-roof the community center
City of Mounds - $20,250 grant to convert a building into the city's maintenance and storage garage
Community Health and Emergency Services - $30,000 grant to construct a building to be used for emergency storage
Village of Irving - $31,000 grant to purchase a new tractor and equipment
City of Marshall - $28,980 grant to replace part of the library's roof and carpet and purchase office equipment
St. Elmo Public Library - $40,000 grant to purchase and renovate a building for use as a library


Indiana


Community Resource Center of Marshall County, Inc. - $310,000 direct loan to construct an office building
Bedford Regional Medical Center, Inc. - $46,800,000 direct loan to build a critical access hospital
Community Health Intervention and Education Foundation, Inc. - $30,380 direct loan and $37,120 grant to reroof a health care facility and replace the HVAC system


Kansas


The Stafford County Historical Society - $3,300 grant to upgrade an HVAC system


Kentucky


City of Sharpsburg - $200,000 direct loan and a $100,000 grant to renovate a building to be used as a community and training center
Owen County Public Library District - $2,163,000 direct loan to build a library
City of Livingston - $20,175 grant to purchase a police car
Sansbury Care Center, Inc. Phase II - $100,000 grant to install a sprinkler system in a nursing home
Memorial Hospital, Inc. - $40,391 grant to purchase a truck to transport a mobile medical unit
City of Wheelwright - $23,615 grant to purchase a police vehicle


Louisiana


St. Helena Hospital Service District #1 - $1,184,000 direct loan to develop an emergency medical records system
Parish of LaSalle - $100,00 grant to build an addition to the Olla library
Primary Care for a Healthy Feliciana, Inc. - $526,500 guaranteed loan to construct an administration building for a health facility
Village of Pioneer - $20,356 grant to purchase a patrol car
Evangeline Parish Law Enforcement Dist #4 - $30,000 grant to replace two police cars


Massachusetts


Town of Hardwick - $618,800 direct loan to make energy efficient improvements to town buildings


Maryland


Town of Kitzmiller - $38,900 grant to purchase a maintenance vehicle truck


Maine


Walter T.A. Hansen Memorial Library - $43,150 grant to make repairs
Friends of the Church on the Hill - $97,000 grant to restore a community church and use it for community space
The Lifeflight Foundation-Rumford - $11,250 grant to construct an automated weather observing system


Michigan


City of Bessemer - $14,000 direct loan to replace the roof on the fire hall
City of Plainwell - $1,350,000 direct loan to build a public service building for fire & police departments
Brevort Township - $300,000 direct loan to replace the Community Center & Library
Schoolcraft Memorial Hospital - $19,000,000 direct loan to replace the hospital
Creative Beginnings Child Development- $500,000 direct loan to purchase a day care building
Chippewa County War Memorial Hospital -$3,872,000 direct loan and $18,077,000 guaranteed loan to construct a replacement hospital and renovate the emergency department
City of Harrison - $86,000 direct loan and $29,000 grant to purchase a fire truck


Minnesota


City of Lancaster - $415,000 direct loan to construct a new community center
City of Mountain Lake - $78,000 direct loan to replace a roof
City of Elgin - $864,000 direct loan to build a dental and chiropractic clinic
Community Memorial Hospital Association - $15,000,000 direct loan and $9,000,000 guaranteed loan to expand and renovate a critical access hospital
White Earth Band of Chippewa Indians - $8,000 grant to purchase turnout gear and pagers for the fire department
City of Lake Benton - $125,000 direct loan and $35,000 grant to replace and update a library facility


Missouri


Reynolds County - $15,500 grant to purchase an emergency response vehicle


Mississippi


Rosemary's Daycare & Learning Center -$41,722 direct loan and $20,550 grant to construct a child care facility
City of Okolona - $76,472 grant to renovate the Okolona Carnegie Library
Town of Maben - $60,000 grant to construct a town hall
Northside Haven Association, Inc. - $70,450 grant to purchase a passenger van, pickup truck, and generator
Pearl River Valley Opportunity, Inc. - $3,000,000 direct loan to build a new Head Start center
Lowndes County Board of Supervisors - $13,000,000 direct loan to purchase land for an industrial park.
City of Mound Bayou- $71,000 grant to purchase three police cars
Town of Walnut - $60,000 grant to purchase an excavator and generator for the fire department and street department
Town of Heidelberg - $51,000 grant to purchase two police cars
Town of Bassfield - $39,797 grant to purchase two police cars
Town of Pickens - $19,452 grant to purchase a police car
Quitman County Board of Supervisors - $18,000 grant to purchase a new sheriff patrol car
Town of Shuqualak - $15,000 grant to purchase a police car
Town of Vardaman - $27,499 grant to paint the exterior and purchase equipment for the Edmondson Memorial Library
City of Hazlehurst - $68,264 grant to replace the roof on city hall
City of Bay Springs - $55,300 grant to build a senior citizens building
City of Morton - $25,696 grant to resurface streets


Montana


City of Shelby - $350,000 direct loan to pave parking and sidewalks for the fire hall


North Carolina


Town of Four Oaks $757,500 direct loan to provide roads and utilities for a business park
Atlantic Fire Department - $10,800 grant for emergency equipment for the fire department


Nebraska


Nuckolls County Agricultural Society, Inc. - $4,900 grant to make upgrades/repairs to the water system for the county fairgrounds
Village of Guide Rock - $15,900 grant to purchase an emergency siren system
Village of Strang $20,000 direct loan and $73,500 grant to construct a new community center


New Mexico


EMW Gas Association - $5,000,000 guaranteed loan to expand natural gas distribution to rural residents


New York


Mercy Flight - $2,500,000 guaranteed loan to purchase a rescue helicopter ($3 million direct loan previously announced)
East Branch Fire District -$16,000 grant to renovate the fire station and make energy efficiency improvements
Carthage Library - $450,000 direct loan and $50,000 grant to build an addition to the library and make renovations


Ohio


Extended Housing, Inc. - $200,000 direct loan to build housing units for the mentally ill


Oklahoma


Searchlight Center, Inc. - $1,878,000 direct loan and $752,300 guaranteed loan to construct an assisted-living facility


Oregon


City of Reedsport - $50,000 grant to make library improvements


Pennsylvania


Charles Cole Memorial Hospital - $2,500,000 direct loan to expand and renovate the emergency department
Fairfield Township - $45,000 direct loan to purchase a tractor/mower
Beccaria Township - $135,000 direct loan and $50,000 grant to construct a municipal building


Puerto Rico


Municipality of Hatillo - $1,030,000 direct loan to make street improvements


South Carolina


Clarendon Hospital District - $17,670,000 direct loan to pay off interim financing
Coastal Plains Physicians Associates - $2,325,000 direct loan to build a medical office building
OCAB Community Action - $5,500,000 direct loan to build a Head Start facility
Inman Community Volunteer Fire Department - $1,223,500 direct loan to build a fire substation
Sandhill Medical Foundation - $1,611,000 direct loan to build a medical center near Lugoff
Marion County - $101,600 direct loan and $54,600 grant to build an emergency medical services building


South Dakota


Faulkton Area Medical Center - $225,000 direct loan to finance additions to a clinic
Parmelee VFD - $55,000 direct loan and $65,000 grant to build a fire hall
Kadoka Nursing Home Association - $53,500 direct loan and $75,500 in grants to install a sprinkler system and make accessibility improvements to sidewalks and doors
Red Cloud Indian School, Inc. - $150,000 direct loan and $100,000 in grants to build an addition to the existing Wellness Center and make accessibility improvements
Town of Glenham - $161,500 direct loan to build a fire fall/community center building
Lead Fire Protection District, Inc. - $2,500,000 direct loan to build a fire hall
Custer Community Health Service Inc. - $2,700,000 direct loan to build an addition to the hospital and make improvements to the clinic
Hartford Area Fire and Rescue, Inc. - $849,000 direct loan and $848,000 guaranteed loan to build a fire station


Tennessee


Town of Stanton - $150,000 direct loan and $40,000 grant to renovate a cannery used by the public
Adams Memorial Association - $1,000,000 direct loan to expand the library


Virginia


Shenandoah Area Agency on Aging - $1,800,000 direct loan to renovate a school building for office space for outreach programs
Greensville County IDA - $1,400,000 direct loan to upgrade solid waste collection facilities throughout the county
Emory & Henry College - $2,419,000 direct loan to renovate the Stuart residence hall
City of Norton - $25,000 grant to purchase a response truck and emergency response equipment
City of Galax - $475,000 direct loan and $25,000 grant to purchase a fire truck


Vermont


Town of Granville - $59,000 direct loan to renovate the town hall and convert a school into the clerk's office


Washington


Lewis-Clark Early Childhood Project - $989,000 guaranteed loan to provide early Head Start services


Wisconsin


TH, Inc. - $1,367,000 direct loan to expand an elder care facility
Couleecap, Inc. - $208,100 direct loan to purchase a building
Wisconsin Vietnam Veterans Memorial Project, Inc. - $50,000 grant to purchase a home to renovate into a learning center


Western Pacific


Our Lady of Mercy Catholic High School - $66,053 grant to renovate an administration building and restroom facilities for high school
Pohnpei Consumer Organization - $26,228 grant to buy a special-needs-equipped van


West Virginia


Webster County Commission - $42,600 grant to buy an off-road rescue/EMS vehicle


USDA, through its Rural Development mission area, administers and manages housing, business and community infrastructure and facility programs through a national network of state and local offices. These programs are designed to improve the economic stability of rural communities, businesses, residents, farmers and ranchers and improve the quality of life in rural America. Rural Development has an existing portfolio of nearly $149 billion in loans and loan guarantees. Visit http://www.rurdev.usda.gov for additional information about the agency's programs or to locate the USDA Rural Development office nearest you.


Source:  USDA