Hanford, CA, Feb 13, 2012 -- Agriculture Deputy Under Secretary for Rural Development Doug O'Brien today announced Riverdale Public Utility District has been selected to receive $1.86 million in loan and grant funds to improve their water system. O'Brien made the announcement while touring a farm utilizing new technologies designed to reduce the amount of water needed for crops.
"Clean water is a basic necessity for the health and economic growth of our rural communities," O'Brien said. "Constructing and improving rural water systems benefit communities by providing reliable access to clean water and create jobs that strengthen economies."
The District will use funds to construct a new well for their water system to replace one that went dry. The well will be located on the southeast corner of Riverdale at the east end of West Wood Street. Officials hope for the project to be completed this summer when water usage is at its peak. This project was funded through USDA Rural Development's Water and Environmental Loan and Grant program.
O'Brien's visit to the Central Valley is in support of the White House Smart Cities, Smart Communities (SC2) initiative announced last summer by President Obama. His visit included meeting with Fresno-based companies engaged in developing new agriculture technologies and touring a local farm to see the equipment in action. In addition, he highlighted the work of Sebastian, who received a $5.4 million award through the American Recovery & Reinvestment Act to provide broadband service in western Fresno County. Tomorrow, he will join officials from SBA at a roundtable meeting in Fresno to discuss opportunities for job creation and economic development in California.
USDA, through its Rural Development mission area, administers and manages housing, business and community infrastructure and facility programs through a national network of state and local offices. Rural Development has an existing portfolio of more than $155 billion in loans and loan guarantees. 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. More information about USDA Rural Development can be found at www.rurdev.usda.gov/ca.
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