News Release
Release No.STELPRD4018657
ContactKatherine Belcher859.224.7306
Lexington, KY, Oct 17, 2012 --

@@USDA Rural Development State Director Tom Fern is in Richmond today to announce a grant to Eastern Kentucky University (EKU) to assist small business owners.

The $58,007 grant is being made available through Rural Development’s Rural Business Enterprise Grant program and will be used by EKU’s Center for Economic Development, Entrepreneurship and Technology (CEDET) to offer a training program for emerging and existing business in Owsley, Estill and Madison counties.

“Rural Development is committed to helping rural small businesses grow and providing the technical support needed to spark sustainable job creation,” said Fern. “I am confident the RBEG funds announced today will be effectively utilized to help businesses in the area obtain the assistance they need to thrive, grow and create jobs.”

The Rural Business Enterprise Grant (RBEG) program provides grants to small and emerging rural businesses for projects such as distance learning networks and employment-related adult education programs. Rural public entities (towns, communities, State agencies and municipal authorities) and rural, private non-profit corporations are eligible to apply for funding under this program. For more information, visit

For additional information on RD projects, please visit Rural Development’s new interactive web map featuring program funding and success stories for fiscal years 2009-2011. The data can be found at:

President Obama’s plan for rural America has brought about historic investment and resulted in stronger rural communities. Under the President’s leadership, these investments in housing, community facilities, businesses and infrastructure have empowered rural America to continue leading the way – strengthening America’s economy, small towns and rural communities. USDA’s investments in rural communities support the rural way of life that stands as the backbone of our American values.

President Obama and Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack are committed to a smarter use of Federal resources to foster sustainable economic prosperity and ensuring the government is a strong partner for businesses, entrepreneurs and working families in rural communities.

USDA, through its Rural Development mission area, has an active portfolio of more than $172 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.


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