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News Release
Release No. STELPRD4017325
ContactJoan Messina217-403-6248
Printable Version  Printable Version
USDA FUNDING AWARDED TO IMPROVE RURAL ELECTRIC INFRASTRUCTURE IN ILLINOIS
Electric Awards

Champaign, IL, Jul 11, 2012 -- Contact: Joan Messina (217) 403-6248

USDA Funding Awarded To Improve Rural Electric Infrastructure in Illinois

Rural Electric Convenience Cooperative to Use Funds

for Distribution Lines and Smart Grid Technology

Champaign, Ill., July 11, 2012 – Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack today announced that rural electric cooperatives and utilities in 15 states will receive loan guarantees to make improvements to generation and transmission facilities and implement smart grid technologies.

“Maintaining and upgrading rural electric systems creates jobs and supports economic development,” Vilsack said. “These loans I am announcing today will have a lasting impact on the rural landscape for generations to come. They will help ensure that rural areas can retain existing businesses, support new ones and have reliable, up-to-date infrastructure.”

With this funding, USDA Rural Development moves closer to reaching Secretary Vilsack’s goal to fund more than $250 million for smart grid technologies. This announcement includes support for more than $10 million in smart grid technologies, which help utilities make efficiency improvements to the electric grid and help consumers lower their electric bills by reducing energy use in homes and businesses.

Rural Electric Convenience Cooperative, Inc. (RECC) in Illinois will serve 229 customers with $7,900,000 in funding to build and improve 45 miles of distribution line and make other system improvements.  The loan includes $54,500 for smart grid projects. Rural Development previously partnered with RECC to provide financing for its wind turbine that generates up to five million kilowatts of clean energy a year. Headquartered in Auburn, the 75-year old member-owned co-op serves 5700 power consumers in Sangamon, Morgan, Macoupin, Christian and Montgomery counties.

”RECC provides invaluable service to its thousands of customers,” said State Rural Development Director Colleen Callahan. “By supporting their efforts to provide affordable and reliable power, we can be sure that the businesses and residents of this area remain a thriving part of our rural economy and home for future generations.”

The following is a list of other rural utilities that will receive USDA funding, which is contingent upon the recipient meeting the terms of the loan agreement.

Georgia

    • Colquitt Electric Membership Corporation – $20,000,000. Funds will be used to build and improve 478 miles of distribution line and make other system improvements, serving 3,284 customers.

Iowa

    • Corn Belt Power Cooperative – $55,788,000. Funds will be used to finance generation system improvements and minority ownership in the Walter Scott Jr. Energy Center Unit 4. The loan includes $22,838,826 in environmental improvement projects.

    • Maquoketa Valley Rural Electric Cooperative – $3,250,000. Funds will be used to build and improve 252 miles of distribution line and make other system improvements, serving 635 customers. The loan includes $220,000 in smart grid projects.

Kansas

    • The Ninnescah Rural Electric Cooperative Association, Inc. – $9,670,000. Funds will be used to build and improve 410 miles of distribution line and make other system improvements, serving 359 customers. The loan includes $550,000 in smart grid projects.

Kentucky

    • Licking Valley Rural Electric Cooperative Corporation – $19,726,000. Funds will be used to build and improve 186 miles of distribution line and make other system improvements, serving 1,250 customers. The loan includes $689,227 in smart grid projects.

Michigan, Indiana and Ohio

    • Midwest Energy Cooperative – $24,000,000. Funds will be used to build and improve 208 miles of distribution and transmission line and make other system improvements, serving 1,100 customers. The loan includes $788,140 in smart grid projects.

Minnesota

    • Red Lake Electric Cooperative, Inc. – $5,166,000. Funds will be used to build and improve 58 miles of distribution line and make other system improvements, serving 188 customers. The loan includes $199,460 in smart grid projects.

Missouri

    • Barry Electric Cooperative – $14,335,000. Funds will be used to build and improve 47 miles of distribution line, 12 miles of transmission line and make other system improvements, serving 822 customers.

North Carolina

    • Surry-Yadkin Electric Membership Corporation – $20,000,000. Funds will be used to build and improve 114 miles of distribution and transmission line and make other system improvements, serving 1,489 customers. The loan includes $1,348,950 in smart grid projects.

    • Cape Hatteras Electric Membership Corporation – $9,792,000. Funds will be used to build and improve 17 miles of distribution and transmission line and make other system improvements, serving 290 customers. The loan includes $2,167,000 in smart grid projects.

Oklahoma

    • Verdigris Valley Electric Cooperative, Inc. – $12,900,000. Funds will be used to build and improve 27 miles of distribution line and make other system improvements, serving 936 customers.

Pennsylvania

    • Adams Electric Cooperative – $40,000,000. Funds will be used to build and improve 200 miles of distribution line and make other system improvements, serving 1,443 customers. The loan includes $767,950 in smart grid projects.

South Dakota

    • Southeastern Electric Cooperative, Inc. – $36,972,000. Funds will be used to build and improve 467 miles of distribution line and make other system improvements, serving 1,610 customers. The loan includes $2,807,850 in smart grid projects.

Texas

    • Houston County Electric Cooperative, Inc. – $8,347,000. Funds will be used to build and improve 421 miles of distribution line and make other system improvements, serving 2,000 customers. The loan includes $670,000 in smart grid projects.

The $287 million in loan guarantees announced today are provided by USDA Rural Development’s Rural Utilities Service (RUS). The funding helps electric utilities upgrade, expand, maintain and replace rural America’s electric infrastructure. USDA Rural Development also funds energy conservation and renewable energy projects.

USDA, through its Rural Development mission area, administers and manages housing, business and community infrastructure programs through a national network of state and local offices. Rural Development has an active portfolio of more than $170 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 areas. More information on USDA Rural Development programs is available on the web at www.rurdev.usda.gov/il.

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USDA is an equal opportunity provider and employer. To file a complaint of discrimination, write: USDA, Office of the Assistant Secretary for Civil Rights, Office of Adjudication, 1400 Independence Ave., SW, Washington, DC 20250-9410 or call (866) 632-9992 (Toll-free Customer Service), (800) 877-8339 (Local or Federal relay), (866) 377-8642 (Relay voice users).

Last Modified:06/20/2013 
 
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