ST. PAUL, Minn., Oct 04, 2011 -- USDA Rural Development State Director Colleen Landkamer today announced over $1.3 million in investments that will improve job creation and the quality of life in six rural Minnesota communities.
“These projects build and improve essential community facilities and strengthen valuable infrastructure,” Landkamer said. “They also create quality jobs, improve education and give rural emergency responders the tools and equipment necessary to do their jobs effectively.”
Projects funded include:
• A $740,000 Rural Economic Development Loan to Lake Country Power in Grand Rapids. Lake Country Power will use the funds to establish a revolving loan fund and assist the Cloquet Community Memorial Hospital expansion project by financing furniture and fixtures in patient rooms and offices. Community Memorial Hospital in Cloquet has a service area of 30,000 people and is currently building a 78,000 square-foot addition to its existing facility.
• A $204,500 grant to build a cultural learning center on the campus of the White Earth Tribal and Community College.
• A $185,000 grant to purchase computer equipment for the Leech Lake Tribal College.
• A $120,000 loan to purchase a new ambulance for the Tri-County EMS District in Karlstad. Tri County EMS serves 43 townships and 10 cities in Northwestern Minnesota.
• A $25,000 loan and $25,000 grant to purchase a fire truck for the city of Hewitt.
• A $50,000 grant to make a community center more energy efficient on the White Earth reservation. The grant will be used to replace oil tankers with electric boilers.
USDA Rural Development has invested about $3.5 billion throughout Minnesota since 2009 to improve housing, infrastructure, businesses, community facilities and renewable energy in rural communities. To learn more about Rural Development programs, visit www.rurdev.usda.gov/mn.