Local Lenders Can Help Rural Development
With more than 98 percent of Maine communities eligible for assistance from Rural Development’s Guaranteed Programs, numerous opportunities exist for funding collaboration. Through partnership with Rural Development, banks can provide communities with fundamental building blocks for economic and community capacity building. Financing opportunities for lending institutions include assisting essential community facilities such as schools, libraries and hospitals; building, repairing or improving rural water and waste treatment systems; acquiring, starting up or expanding businesses; helping rural residents obtain homeownership; and establishing multifamily housing for low-income or elderly Maine residents.
Recently, Rural Development announced new opportunities through the Renewable Energy and Energy Efficiency Program that would enable banks to guarantee wind and biomass energy projects and projects to produce biodiesel. Renewable energy projects include those for which energy is derived from wind, solar, biomass or geothermal sources, or for which hydrogen is derived from biomass or water using one of the previously stated energy sources. Notice of Funding Availability is expected to be announced soon. For more information, visit
Rural Development invested more than $147 million in Maine’s rural communities in fiscal year 2005. Through Rural Development’s housing programs, 684 Maine people obtained or maintained homeownership; through the business programs, 953 jobs were created or saved and 126 business were supported; through the utilities programs, 73,636 Maine residents had access to quality water and sewer systems; and through the community facilities programs, 39 facilities, such as schools, hospitals and libraries, were assisted.
For more information about how your lending institution can get involved in utilizing Rural Development’s programs, visit www.rurdev.usda.gov/me/.
A complete list of Rural Development’s Guaranteed Programs is listed below.