Des Moines, Iowa, Dec 16, 2011 -- December 16, 2011 – Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack recently announced loans and grants for agricultural producers and rural small businesses across the country to implement renewable energy and energy efficiency measures in their operations. The funding is provided through USDA Rural Development’s Rural Energy for America Program (REAP).
A total of $3,175,502 in loan and grant funds are being awarded to 150 Iowa businesses and producers.
“Stable energy costs create an environment for job growth in rural America,” Vilsack said. “The Obama Administration is helping agricultural producers and business owners reduce their energy costs and consumption – and by doing so is helping preserve our natural resources, protect the environment and strengthen the bottom line for businesses, ranchers and farm operations.”
REAP, authorized through the 2008 Farm Bill, provides loans and grants for farmers, ranchers and rural small business owners to purchase and install renewable energy systems and make energy-efficiency improvements. These federal dollars are leveraged with other funding sources for the projects.
In Fiscal Year 2011, USDA Rural Development provided nationwide through the REAP program a total of $23.2 million for energy efficiency projects, $20.9 million for biodigesters, $20.3 million for solar energy projects, $8.2 million for hydroelectric systems, $7 million for biomass energy projects, $4.28 million for flexible fuel pump projects, $3.9 million for wind energy projects, $1.4 million for geothermal installations.
Included in this announcement is assistance to the following businesses to help them install flexible fuel pumps in the state:
• Freedom Rock Renewable Fuels, LLC #1 – $49,925 grant to install two flexible fuel pumps
• Freedom Rock Renewable Fuels, LLC #2 – $49,578 grant to install a flexible fuel pump
• Heller Implement, Inc. – $36,001 grant to install three flexible fuel pumps and a new underground biofuel storage tank
• Marcus Junction, LLC – $7,500 grant to install a blender fuel pump
• Mid-Iowa Cooperative – $94,211 grant to buy and install six flexible fuel pumps
Additionally, 145 producers are receiving loan and grant funds to help them install new energy-efficient grain drying systems.
Since taking office, President Obama’s Administration has taken historic steps to improve the lives of rural Americans, put people back to work and build thriving economies in rural communities. From proposing the American Jobs Act to establishing the first-ever White House Rural Council – chaired by Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack – the President wants the federal government to be the best possible partner for rural businesses, entrepreneurs and people who want to live, work and raise their families in rural communities.
Contact USDA Rural Development
For more information about finance programs through USDA Rural Development, please call (515) 284-4747.
USDA Rural Development has 11 offices across the state to serve the 1.7 million Iowans living in rural communities and areas. Office locations include a State Office in Des Moines, along with Area Offices in Albia, Atlantic, Humboldt, Indianola, Iowa Falls, Le Mars, Mount Pleasant, Storm Lake, Tipton and Waverly.
Further information on programs available through USDA Rural Development is available by visiting the agency’s web site at www.rurdev.usda.gov/ia.
USDA Rural Development is an equal opportunity lender with a variety of grant and direct and guaranteed loan programs for single and multi-family housing, community facilities, water and sewer development and business and industry programs.
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