USDA announced Friday the publication of a guide outlining programs the federal government has available to support rural communities.
The guide will ensure that rural communities have access to all of the federal resources that can support their efforts to promote economic competitiveness, protect healthy environments modernize infrastructure and provide services to residents. It also includes key information on funding and technical assistance opportunities available from the government, as well as examples of how rural communities across the country have benefitted from federal resources.
"Rural communities across the country are working hard to build their economies and provide services to their residents," USDA Under Secretary for Rural Development Dallas Tonsager said during a speech at a conference of the National Rural Economic Developers Association.
"Creating great places to live, raise families, provide recreational opportunities, and infrastructure for high paying jobs in rural America is very important to the Obama Administration and our efforts at USDA. This publication will provide easy, one-stop access to federal programs," he concluded.
While in Indiana, Tonsager took part in a two-day tour to highlight ways USDA Rural Development programs have helped rural communities. For example, the Putnam County Hospital in Greencastle, Ind., received Rural Development Community Facilities guaranteed loans to repair structural problems and to purchase new billing program software.
Tonsager also visited a Rural Development Water and Environmental Program project which replaced deteriorated water lines in the city of North Vernon's distribution system and met with local leaders in Batesville to discuss Rural Development funding opportunities.
The publication Federal Resources for Sustainable Rural Communities is a collaborative effort among USDA, the Department of Housing and Urban Development, the Department of Transportation and the Environmental Protection Agency.
A copy of the resource guide is available in the Spotlight section of the USDA Rural Development home page.