Oskaloosa, Iowa, Sep 04, 2013 -- Bill Menner, USDA Rural Development State Director in Iowa, today participated in a ribbon cutting and open house event to celebrate the recently completed expansion and renovation project at Mahaska County Hospital in Oskaloosa.
“We are extremely pleased to be assisting with this expansion and remodeling project which will not only help expand healthcare services in the area but will also create job opportunities,” Menner said. “Access to high quality health care is an issue of growing concern to many rural Iowa communities as the baby boom generation ages and requires more medical services.”
USDA Rural Development provided a $23 million loan to assist with the 52,000 square-foot patient care wing expansion at the hospital.
Mahaska County Hospital, a 25-bed critical access facility, was established 106 years ago and underwent large addition projects in 1965 and 2000. The hospital is now the county’s third largest employer.
The recently completed two-story addition expands and relocates the operating suites to meet a growing demand and improves the nursing and obstetric units at the hospital.
“This project represents part of a continuing effort by the Obama Administration to advance technology as it relates to rural health care,” Menner said. “Rural residents must have access to the best available care, and this facility will provide decades of service to the residents of this region.”
USDA Rural Development’s funding continues to have a dramatic impact on rural communities across Iowa. Since 2009, USDA Rural Development has invested more than $2.5 billion on essential public facilities, small and emerging businesses, water and sewer systems, and housing opportunities for Iowa families.
This includes more than $200 million in loans and grants to around 30 rural health care facilities in Iowa helping to make needed facility and equipment improvements such as this project in Oskaloosa.
This past year USDA Rural Development’s investment in Iowa helped create or retain more than 1,600 jobs, aided 2,400 families in buying their own homes and assisted more than 60 communities as they made improvements to their facilities, services and infrastructure.
For more information about financing programs available through USDA Rural Development, please call the office located in Albia at (641) 932-3031 Ext. 4. This office serves communities, businesses and residents in Appanoose, Davis, Jasper, Lucas, Mahaska, Marion, Monroe, Poweshiek, Wapello and Wayne Counties.
USDA Rural Development has 11 offices across the state to serve the 1.7 million Iowans living in rural communities and areas. Office locations include a State Office in Des Moines, along with Area Offices in Albia, Atlantic, Humboldt, Indianola, Iowa Falls, Le Mars, Mount Pleasant, Storm Lake, Tipton and Waverly.
Further information on programs available through USDA Rural Development is available by visiting the agency’s web site at www.rurdev.usda.gov/ia.
USDA Rural Development is working with rural communities to create jobs, expand opportunity, encourage innovation and build a strong foundation for the future. The agency currently administers and manages more than 40 housing, business and community infrastructure and facility loan and grant programs designed to improve the economic stability of rural communities, businesses, residents and farmers and improve the quality of life in rural America.
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 Vilsack are committed to a smarter use of Federal resources to foster sustainable economic prosperity and ensure the government is a strong partner for businesses, entrepreneurs and working families in 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.
# # #