Portland, OR, Jul 02, 2013 -- Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack and USDA Rural Development State Director Vicki Walker recently announced a $99,604 grant to The Klamath Tribes to help tribal members develop and expand small businesses and microenterprises in Southern Oregon. Funding is provided through the Rural Business Enterprise Grant program.
The USDA grant, along with nearly $53,000 from the tribal government and other sources, will help The Klamath Tribes deliver entrepreneurial training, business counseling and technical assistance to tribal members looking to start their own business ventures. While the project will assist entrepreneurs in a variety of fields, The Klamath Tribes anticipate a number of tribal start-ups in the natural resource restoration arena.
“I am excited about the opportunities and interest in the restoration arena and what the long-term economic and natural resources benefits are for the Tribes,” said Don Gentry, Chairman of the Klamath Tribes.
The project directly addresses needs and opportunities outlined in the tribal economic development plan. Through the effort, The Klamath Tribes will establish a small business development assistance office to provide resources, referrals, advocacy and coaching to tribal members interested in starting and operating their own businesses.
“This project supports the development of independent small enterprises with the business processes in place to compete for local restoration work,” Walker said. “The end goal is to support the development of private businesses that are competitive and self-sustaining into the future,” she said.
USDA has several initiatives underway to support small businesses and the communities they serve. Altogether, USDA business and cooperative development programs have had a significant impact on rural communities – achieving record results under President Obama. Since 2009, USDA has provided more than 15,000 loans and grants through its business programs, helping more than 60,000 rural small businesses. For more information on USDA's business and cooperative development programs, visit http://www.rurdev.usda.gov/Business.html.
Rural small businesses are encouraged to contact their nearest USDA Rural Development Business Programs Specialist for information about available assistance. A list of these contacts is available at http://www.rurdev.usda.gov/ORbcp.html.
Funding through the Rural Business Enterprise Grants program supports the Obama Administration's vision by providing rural communities with resources to support small businesses, improve public facilities, and create new, sustainable jobs. Funding is contingent upon the recipient meeting the conditions for the grant.
President Obama's plan to revitalize the rural economy has brought about historic investment over the past four years – including in America's small towns and rural communities. USDA, through its Rural Development mission area, has a portfolio of programs designed to improve the economic stability of rural communities, businesses, residents, farmers and ranchers and improve the quality of life in rural America.
USDA has made a concerted effort to deliver results for the American people, even as USDA implements sequestration – the across-the-board budget reductions mandated under terms of the Budget Control Act. USDA has already undertaken historic efforts since 2009 to save more than $828 million in taxpayer funds through targeted, common-sense budget reductions. These reductions have put USDA in a better position to carry out its mission, while implementing sequester budget reductions in a fair manner that causes as little disruption as possible.
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