Rural Energy for America Program Guaranteed Loan Program (REAP Loans)
The REAP Guaranteed Loan Program encourages the commercial financing of renewable energy (bioenergy, geothermal, hydrogen, solar, wind and hydro power) and energy efficiency projects. Under the program, project developers will work with local lenders, who in turn can apply to USDA Rural Development for a loan guarantee up to 85 percent of the loan amount. For more information about this program click here
Rural Economic Development Loan And Grant (REDLG) Program
program provides funding to rural projects through local utility organizations. Under the REDLoan
program, USDA provides zero interest loans to local utilities which they, in turn, pass through to local businesses (ultimate recipients) for projects that will create and retain employment in rural areas. The ultimate recipients repay the lending utility directly. The utility is responsible for repayment to the Agency. Under the REDGrant
program, USDA provides grant funds to local utility organizations which use the funding to establish revolving loan funds. Loans are made from the revolving loan fund for projects that will create or retain rural jobs. When the revolving loan fund is terminated, the grant is repaid to the Agency. Complete details on these programs can be found here
USDA Rural Development
Utility services are the foundation of rural infrastructure. Reliable and affordable water, waste treatment, electric power and telecommunications services can help rural areas expand economic opportunities and improve the quality of life for rural residents. USDA Rural Development provides funding opportunities in the form of payments, grants, loans, and loan guarantees, for the development and commercialization of vital utility services. These programs revitalize rural communities with a variety of infrastructure improvements, and create sustainable opportunities for wealth, new jobs, and increased economic activity in rural America. Go to this link for more information about rural development funding.
Farm Storage Facility Loan Program
This program offered through the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) Farm Service Agency (FSA) offers producers low-interest financing to build or upgrade farm storage and handling facilities. Some of the program’s eligible commodities for storage facility loans include: crops harvested as whole grain, crops harvested as other-than whole grain, pulse crops, hay, renewable biomass, fruits and vegetables – cold storage. For a complete listing of eligible commodities and eligible facilities and upgrades, view the PDF factsheet, or visit the program website here.
Emergency Farm Loans
USDA's Farm Service Agency (FSA) provides emergency loans to help producers recover from production and physical losses due to drought, flooding, other natural disasters, or quarantine. Information and applications for the loan programs described are available at local FSA county offices. These are usually listed in telephone directories in the section set aside for governmental/public organizations under the U.S. Department of Agriculture, Farm Service Agency or click here to locate your local FSA office. For more information about emergency loans, click this PDF.
Emergency Watershed Protection Grant
The USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service's Emergency Watershed Protection (EWP) program helps protect lives and property threatened by natural disasters such as floods, hurricanes, tornadoes, droughts, and wildfires. EWP provides funding for such work as clearing debris from clogged waterways, restoring vegetation, and stabilizing river banks. The measures that are taken must be environmentally and economically sound and generally benefit more than one property owner. EWP also provides funds to purchase floodplain easements as an emergency measure. Floodplain easements restore, protect, maintain, and enhance the functions of the floodplain; conserve natural values including fish and wildlife habitat, water quality, flood water retention, ground water recharge, and open space; reduce long-term federal disaster assistance; and safeguard lives and property from floods, drought, and the products of erosion. EWP cost-share rate is paid at a 75/25 percent ratio, but can provide up to 90 percent cost share if an area qualifies as a limited resource areas, as determined by the federal, state, and local census data. If you would like more information on this grant click here
The Agricultural Fact Book
The Agricultural Fact Book is a handy reference tool that offers information about US Agriculture and describes all USDA programs. It also provides useful information about food safety, nutrition, rural issues, research, education, and natural resources. All Agricultural Fact books are available in pdf format, which requires Adobe Acrobat. Click here to find out how to get your copy.
More information from the USDA can be found on their website at http://www.usda.gov/wps/portal/usda/usdahome.