USDA Rural Development Colorado State Director Sallie Clark highlighted the department’s investments in 2020 that are building prosperity and strengthening the nation’s rural businesses and communities. “In Colorado, nearly $800 million was invested across our affordable housing, business & economic development, and our community infrastructure programs,” said Clark. “Despite our staff working remotely, it’s been a banner year for rural Colorado. We have touched the lives of residents throughout the state through our funding from hospitals to libraries, homes to businesses, delivering clean and reliable water sources, to broadband and renewable energy projects. USDA Rural Development Colorado will continue our efforts in 2021, because when rural America thrives, we all thrive,” said Clark.
Below is a summary of USDA Rural Development’s Fiscal Year (FY) 2020 accomplishments for Colorado:
Connecting Rural America to High-Speed Broadband: Invested $12.3 million to support rural broadband expansion through the ReConnect Pilot Program. These investments are connecting approximately 2,171 households, 118 farms and 79 businesses to high-speed internet in Colorado.
Improving Rural Infrastructure - Invested $13.8 million to expand access to safe drinking water and improve wastewater management systems. These investments will improve the reliability of local water supply for rural Colorado residents.
Bolstering Rural Economic Development - Invested $26.7 million to assist rural businesses through the Business and Industry (B&I) Loan Guarantee Program. Invested more than $1.1 million in loan and grants through the Rural Energy for America Program (REAP) for energy efficiency improvements, renewable energy systems, and energy development assistance in rural businesses.
Improving Rural Quality of Life - Invested nearly $24 million in loans and grants through the Community Facilities Programs that funded the construction or modernization of 21 essential community facilities such as rural hospitals, educational institutions and public safety facilities. Invested $286 million in direct and guaranteed loans through the Single Family Housing Programs to help 1,155 low- and moderate-income families buy homes in Colorado.
Under the leadership of President Donald J. Trump and Agriculture Secretary Sonny Perdue, USDA invested a record $40 billion in rural communities in 2020 to help increase economic opportunities and improve the quality of life for rural residents across the 50 states and all U.S. territories.