Columbia, SC, Nov 09, 2011 -- Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack today announced the selection of 35 rural microdevelopment organizations for loans and grants to support rural business development, create jobs, and strengthen local communities. Business organizations in 22 states and the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico will receive support.
"A strong rural America and a strong agricultural industry go hand in hand," said Vilsack. "These investments will bring increased economic opportunity to rural residents and communities. They will help organizations expand job and economic opportunities in rural communities across the nation."
The funding announced today is being provided through the Rural Microentrepreneur Assistance Program (RMAP). Recipients are development organizations that make loans to microenterprises and microentreprenuers and provide business-based training and technical assistance to rural micro-borrowers.
For example, in South Carolina, The Beaufort County Black Chamber of Commerce (BCBCC) is receiving a $335,000 loan and $40,000 grant to provide technical assistance and to capitalize a rural microloan revolving fund to make loans to rural microentrepreneurs and microenterprises in Beaufort county in the Low Country of South Carolina.
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 and entrepreneurs creating job opportunities and for people who want to live, work, and raise their families in rural communities.
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.
USDA , through its Rural Development’s 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 active portfolio of more than $155 billion in affordable 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. For more information regarding USDA Rural Development programs, contact the State Office at 803 765-5163, or by visiting the State’s web site at http://www.rurdev.usda.gov/sc.
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