San Antonio, Texas, Jun 27, 2011 -- USDA Rural Development State Director, Paco Valentin, announced funding today to Bexar County Emergency Services District Emergency Services District #6. Bexar County ESD was awarded over $3 million in loans and grants funded through USDA Rural Development’s Community Facility program.
“USDA Rural Development is committed to providing safety and security to rural communities throughout Texas,” said Paco Valentin, USDA Rural Development State Director. “In the unfortunate event of an evacuation due to disaster, the new emergency center will provide a safe haven for rural residents who are temporarily forced to leave their homes.”
Bexar County ESD will use $3,182,000 loan and $35,000 grant to construct a new emergency evacuation center in Thelma, Texas. The new center will be designed to handle 500 hurricane, or other disaster related activity, evacuees via US 281/I-37, which includes the southern portion of Bexar County. The evacuation center will provide local volunteer fire departments and emergency personnel the resources for handling disaster assistance in one central location. The facility will also serve as a training venue for districts within the region, and may eventually be rented to community organizations for various functions.
In Fiscal Year 2010, over $62 million in Community Facility loans and grants were obligated in Texas, to include funding for 4 new fire departments and numerous emergency response vehicles. The USDA Rural Development's Community Facilities program helps finance essential community facilities for public use in rural areas. These facilities include child care centers, hospitals, medical clinics, assisted-living facilities, fire and rescue stations, police stations, community centers, public buildings and transportation. Through this program, USDA ensures that such facilities are available to all rural residents. These funds are available to public bodies, non-profit organizations and federally recognized Indian tribes. More information about USDA's Recovery Act efforts is available at www.usda.gov/recovery.
USDA Rural Development strives to see that rural citizens can participate fully in the global economy by providing technical assistance, funding, and other programs that help rural Americans build strong economies to improve their quality of life. For further information regarding USDA Rural Development Programs, contact the Seguin office at 830-372-1043, Extension 4, or visit our website at http://rurdev.usda.gov/tx/.