WASHINGTON, Oct 04, 2011 -- Agriculture Secretary Vilsack Announces Support to Create Jobs, Repair or Build Community Centers, Health Care Facilities, and Bring Public Safety Vehicles to Rural Communities
WASHINGTON, Oct. 4, 2011 - Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack today announced investments in 32 states and one territory that will create jobs and improve the quality of life in rural communities across the nation.
"These projects not only provide needed infrastructure in rural communities, they contribute to the Obama administration's continued efforts to create quality jobs and improve the nation’s economy," Vilsack said. "The projects announced today will help strengthen facilities and amenities in rural towns and small cities."
For example, in Honesdale, Wayne County, Texas No. 4 Fire Company received a direct loan and grant to purchase a new fire truck that combines the functions of a ladder and pumper truck. A single vehicle can now respond to many different emergency situations, ensuring the continuation of vital emergency response services for rural residents.
The $46.8 million announced today is being funded through the USDA Rural Development Community Facilities Program. Funding of individual recipients is contingent upon meeting the terms of the loan or grant agreement. 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.
On September 8, President Obama presented the American Jobs Act in an address to Congress. The purpose of the American Jobs Act is simple: put more people back to work and put more money in the pockets of working Americans. The American Jobs Act is specific. It will put people back to work right now, and it will not add to the deficit. Through a combination of direct spending, such as infrastructure investments, and tax relief, such as an extension of the payroll tax cuts, it will lead to new American jobs. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, 21 direct or indirect jobs are created for each $1 million invested in infrastructure.
Since taking office, President Obama's Administration has taken significant steps to improve the lives of rural Americans and has provided broad support for rural communities. The Obama Administration has set goals of modernizing infrastructure by providing broadband access to 10 million Americans, expanding educational opportunities for students in rural areas, and providing affordable health care. In the long term, these unparalleled rural investments will help ensure that America's rural communities are repopulating, self-sustaining and thriving economically.
Through its Rural Development mission area, USDA administers and manages more than 40 housing, business and community infrastructure and facility programs through a network of approximately 110 employees located in 11 offices throughout Pennsylvania. 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. For more information on programs offered by USDA Rural Development, contact the Pennsylvania State Office at (717) 237-2299 or visit its website at www.rurdev.usda.gov/pa.
USDA is an equal opportunity provider, employer and lender. To file a complaint of discrimination, write: USDA, Director, Office of Civil Rights, 1400 Independence Avenue, SW, Washington, DC 20250-9410 or call (800) 795-3272 (voice), or (202) 720-6382 (TDD).