USDA has $10.4M to expand rural econ. development

José Otero-García, Rural Development state director for Puerto Rico. (Credit: © Mauricio Pascual) José Otero-García, Rural Development state director for Puerto Rico. (Credit: © Mauricio Pascual)

The U.S. Department of Agriculture recently announced it has some $10.4 million in funding available for grants to support rural community economic development.

The finding is being extended through the agency’s Rural Community Development Initiative Program, which is run by its Rural Development arm.

Eligible applicants include public, private and nonprofit intermediaries, said José Otero-García, USDA Rural Development state director for Puerto Rico.

Rural Community Development Initiative grants can be used to provide training or technical assistance. Training may be focus on home ownership education, minority business entrepreneurship, strategic community planning or accessing alternative funding sources. Intermediary organizations must provide matching funds at least equal to the RCDI grant. Grants range from $50,000 to $250,000, he said.

The USDA has invested more than $33 million through the RCDI program since 2009. In 2014, the Puerto Rico Community Foundation received a $152,492 grant to provide technical assistance to three nonprofit organizations, local agency officials said.

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This story was written by our staff based on a press release.

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