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USDA invests nearly $118 million in rural communities
by Tribune Staff
Dec 23, 2011 | 717 views | 0 0 comments | 1 1 recommendations | email to a friend | print

CARSON CITY — USDA Rural Development, one of the seven mission areas of the U.S. Department of Agriculture, invested nearly $118 million in rural Nevadans and their communities during the 2011 fiscal year, creating 213 jobs in the business and real estate sectors and helping 591 families into homeownership.

USDA State Director Sarah Adler noted that rural communities are engaged and vibrant in spite of difficult times, but continue to be challenged to support small business development and essential services.

“That’s where USDA and our partners come in,” Adler said. “If a community has to choose between replacing a pumper truck or renovating their senior center, essential services can be lost. We try to help keep them whole with lower cost and longer term loans.”

Adler added that of the nearly $118  million invested this year, 72 percent of it was in the form of guarantees for private sector loans.

“We provide lenders that small amount of risk support that is needed to bring private capital to rural main streets,” Adler said. “This partnership is light on the taxpayers but long on results for rural communities.”

Funds provided through the Business Development Program’s guaranteed loans, grants and direct loans helped boost $10.9 million in business development, creating 20 jobs and saving another four jobs in rural Nevada communities. Businesses as varied as the Marriott Towne Place Suites in Elko and a shrimp farm in Apex benefited from the loan guarantees.

Over the last year, the Rural Nevada Development Corporation (RNDC) has served as USDA Rural Development’s intermediary lender for the Rural Microenterprise Assistance Program (RMAP) and the  Intermediary Relending Program (IRP). Using USDA RD funds, RNDC provided $746,923 in loans to 17 small rural Nevada businesses, creating 40 jobs and retaining 24 jobs.

Through its Housing Program, USDA RD brought 591 families into homeownership with $95.1 million in mortgage loans for low- and moderate-income Nevadans in rural areas of the state.

Over the past three fiscal years, USDA RD has invested nearly $376 million in affordable housing, community facilities and utility systems, and rural business ventures in Nevada.

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