Hoeven Announces $6.4 Million in USDA Loans and Grants to Support Rural Business in North Dakota

WASHINGTON – Senator John Hoeven today announced that the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) has awarded nearly $6.4 million in loans and grants to support rural business activities in North Dakota. The funds are made available through two USDA programs, the Rural Economic Development Loan and Grant (REDLG) Program and the Rural Microentrepreneur Assistance Program (RMAP), which were continued by the 2014 farm bill.

The REDLG Program provides zero-interest loans to local utilities, which then relend the funds to local businesses to boost economic growth in rural communities. Through RMAP, USDA provides loans to Microenterprise Development Organizations (MDOs) to support microloans for the start-up or development of businesses with 10 or fewer employees. RMAP also makes grants available for MDOs to provide technical assistance and training, particularly in rural areas experiencing persistent poverty or significant outmigration.

“As North Dakota’s economy continues to expand, from the oil patch to Fargo, we have many opportunities to grow and diversify our economy,” said Hoeven. “These USDA loans and grants help our businesses act on opportunities in our smaller communities that might otherwise not be realized. Such investments help enhance our state’s economy, providing our resident’s with jobs and helping to sustain our economic growth into the future.”

The loans and grants are awarded as follows:

  • West River Veterinary Clinic, PC – $2 million – This loan, made through Northern Plains Electric Cooperative, will help build a new, modern clinic in Hettinger.
  • Gooseneck Implement – $2 million – These two loans, made through SRT Communications and Verendrye Electric Cooperative, will help construct a farm equipment facility in Velva.
  • Dakota Spirit AgEnergy, LLC– $1 million – This loan, made through the Northern Plains Electric Cooperative, will support the construction a 65-million-gallon-per-year ethanol plant in Jamestown.
  • S&S Grain, Inc. – $775,000 – This loan, made through Nodak Electric Cooperative, Inc., will support the purchase and renovation of a building for grain drying, handling and storage in Walhalla.
  • Oyate Community Development Corporation – $500,000 loan and $105,000 grant – These funds will be used to capitalize a rural revolving loan fund to make microloans to very small businesses.

As a member of the U.S. Senate Agriculture and Appropriations committees, Hoeven continues working to support rural development programs, which promote infrastructure investment in and help grow North Dakota’s rural communities. The senator also served on the Senate-House Conference Committee that negotiated the final version of the new five-year farm bill which reauthorized and strengthened programs in support of rural communities.