Auburn, Nebraska, May 31, 2012 -- USDA Rural Development State Director Maxine Moul met today with Head Librarian Heather Koeneke at the Auburn Memorial Library to tour the library’s expansion project. The USDA Rural Development Community Facility Loan and Grant program helped fund the project. The construction site visit coincided with the release today by USDA Secretary Tom Vilsack of the Agency’s Community Facility report. It highlights ways in which Community Facilities loans and grants have helped rural communities provide essential services and improve local infrastructure since the start of the Obama Administration.
“It is exciting to be here today to see the library addition taking shape,” said Moul. “The Auburn Memorial Library is an actively used essential community facility. The addition will meet the library’s needs of today and for a long time.”
USDA Rural Development provided a loan of $100,000 and a grant of $56,590 to the Auburn Memorial Library Foundation, Inc. Leveraged funds of $265,590 from the Foundation and $75,000 from the Peter Kiewit Foundation completed the needed funding.
“The foundation, board, and staff are all very excited to see the progress on the addition. We are grateful to the USDA for helping us reach our dream of the addition.” said Koeneke.
The Auburn Memorial Library is adding 1,340 square feet due to the increased use of the library. The expansion includes adding a youth services collection and reading area, and a new Director’s office. The relocation of youth services will allow for expansion of the adult collection. Part of the existing office will be converted into a workroom and the other part will be the walkway into the new addition. Equipment will also be purchased with the funds. Mechanical and electrical systems will be upgraded in the new mechanical/electrical room. The library serves 3,350 rural residents.
This facility is one of several projects under construction in Nebraska, supported by funds from the USDA Rural Development Community Facilities program. Among them are the Table Rock Historical Society building, Providence Medical Center in Wayne, West Holt Memorial Hospital at Atkinson, Brown County Ag Society at Johnstown, and the Public Library in Farnam. The Aurora Hospital will hold its open house on Sunday, June 24, and the new Community Hospital of McCook will hold a grand opening of its more than $30 million new facility and addition on Sunday, July 1. Other recent ribbon cuttings have included the Pawnee City Library, the Fillmore County Hospital at Geneva, Gothenburg Memorial Hospital Medical Clinic and the Pender Community Hospital.
Since fiscal year 2009, Rural Development’s Community Facilities Program has helped more than 37 million rural Americans address essential challenges in health care, education, public service and public safety by financing projects through loans, grants, or loan guarantees, according to USDA Under Secretary for Rural Development, Dallas Tonsager.
“As the only Federal agency with the primary responsibility of serving rural areas, USDA Rural Development takes pride in addressing needs that are specific to local communities. The long-standing relationships established through direct personal contact with these communities through our State and area offices have allowed us to administer the Community Facilities Program with great success. Many Rural Development employees are members of the communities they serve and possess expert knowledge of the challenges and opportunities that exist in their region. Rural Development remains committed to building on the progress we’ve made over the last three years to strengthen rural America,” Tonsager said.
To read Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack’s report released today highlighting the ways in which infrastructure investments in rural communities help create jobs and boost economic development and additional investments that will create jobs and promote economic growth across the nation, see: http://www.rurdev.usda.gov/SupportDocuments/rdCFReportMay31-2012.pdf
For more information contact Janice Stopak (402) 423-9683 ext. 121 or Janice.firstname.lastname@example.org.