USDA seeks applications to promote job creation and boost the rural
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[April 12, 2013]
CHAMPAIGN -- Agriculture
Secretary Tom Vilsack announced Monday that applications are being
accepted from qualified nonprofit and public organizations as
intermediaries to provide loans to support rural businesses and
community development groups. Funding, which is intended to spark
business expansion and create jobs, will be made available through
USDA's Intermediary Relending Program, or IRP.
The United States Department of Agriculture remains focused on
carrying out its mission, despite a time of significant budget
uncertainty. This announcement is one part of the department's
efforts to strengthen the rural economy.
"This program is a part
of the Obama administration's ongoing effort to leverage private
investments with public funds to create jobs and expand economic
opportunity for rural entrepreneurs," Vilsack said. "Intermediaries
serve as a critical component to boosting local economies."
The Intermediary Relending Program is USDA Rural Development's
primary program for capitalizing revolving loan funds. USDA lends
money to economic development intermediaries -- nonprofits and
public bodies -- which in turn re-lend the funds as commercial loans
to rural businesses, the ultimate recipients, that might not
otherwise be able to obtain such financing. The repayment of the
ultimate recipients' loans allows the intermediary to continue to
make more loans to new recipients, supporting sustainable economic
development. The program has created or saved an estimated 20,000
jobs since 2009.
For example, the South Central Illinois Regional Planning &
Development Commission has participated in the Intermediary
Relending Program since 1992. The commission has made 74 loans
totaling $8,439,800 since beginning participation in the program.
This has resulted in the creation of 1,279 new jobs and retention of
276 existing jobs within the five-county region. The development
commission serves the Illinois counties of Clay, Effingham, Fayette,
Jasper and Marion.
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For more information about the Intermediary Relending Program,
and to learn about application requirements and deadlines, contact
the state office of Illinois Rural Development at 217-403-6200.
USDA, through its Rural Development mission area, has an active
portfolio of more than $181 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.
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 $700 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.
[Text from file received from
USDA Rural Development, Illinois]