New Rockford, ND

Welcome to New Rockford, ND
Photo montage: children holding hands and running through a field, bales of hay on farmland, a young couple with a baby in the park, the sun shining on a field of wheat

USDA to Present on Grant and Funding Programs at Opera House

September 15, 2015
- United State Department of Agriculture’s Rural Development Agency (USDA-RD) has several programs available to assist producers, farmer- or rancher-cooperatives, rural small businesses, and non-profit organizations. On Thursday, September 17 from 9 am to 4 pm, representatives from Schmitt Strategies of Bismarck will host a workshop about USDA-RD programs at the Opera House in New Rockford.

The program is sponsored by USDA-RD and United Tribes Technical College. At this free event, rural community members will spend the morning understanding what programs are available and what projects are eligible, and in the afternoon representatives from Schmitt Strategies of Bismarck will provide one-on-one technical assistance to those interested in applying for funding.
Two of the programs to be discussed at the workshop include the Rural Development Renewable Energy for America Program (REAP) and the the Value Added Producer Grant (VAPG).

REAP provides guaranteed loan financing and grant funding to agricultural producers and rural small businesses to purchase or install renewable energy systems or make energy efficiency improvements. Funds may be used for the purchase, installation and construction of renewable energy systems, including geothermal, biomass, wind and solar. Other eligible uses are purchase, installation and construction of energy efficiency improvements, such as replacing lighting, heating and cooling; electric, installing solar or gravity pumps for sprinkler pivots; and replacing diesel irrigation motors with electric. The program offers guarantees on loans up to 75 percent of total eligible project costs, grants for up to 25 percent of total eligible project costs, and combined grant and loan guarantee funding.

VAPG offers grant and matching funds for planning activities or for working capital expenses related to producing and marketing a value-added agricultural product. Eligible expenses include up to $75,000 for business planning or conducing feasibility studies, and up to $250,000 in working capital for marketing, processing, and some salary and inventory expenses. Independent producers, agricultural producer groups, farmer- or rancher-cooperatives, and majority-controlled producer-based business ventures are eligible to apply for this program.

The public is welcome, and pre-registration is not required. For further information, contact Barbara Schmitt at (701) 527-0931 or or email
This site maintained by the New Rockford Area Betterment Corporation.