On October 6, the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) awarded more than $400 million to 26 lenders working in 18 states who will provide long-term, low-cost financing to local entities to build, acquire, maintain or renovate essential community facilities through the Community Facilities Relending Program. The funds may also be used for capacity building and financing essential community services, such as education, healthcare and infrastructure.

Earlier this summer, the USDA amended the Community Facility Direct Loan program regulations to enable the Agency to make loans to qualified mission-driven relenders. OFN commends the USDA for opening the program to relenders like CDFIs, and creating this important public-private partnership to facilitate the flow of capital into rural communities.

CDFIs are important partners for USDA and already provide financing for community facilities, housing, and businesses in rural markets that are often challenging for conventional lenders. OFN Members have a proven track record of developing solutions to address rural poverty with expertise in reaching high poverty and persistent poverty rural areas, enabling them to fund projects in or serving some of the nation's poorest rural areas in Appalachia, the colonias along the U.S./Mexico border, and in the Mississippi Delta region.

Along with the loan capital, the Community Facilities Relending program also generated another innovative partnership with the philanthropic sector: the Uplift America Fund, which provided more than $19 million in much-needed grant support and subsidy to strengthen the balance sheet of participating relenders.

Congratulations to all awardees, including our 19 CDFI Members who received a total of $322 million in loan capital from the USDA and more than $18.3 million in grants from the Uplift America Fund.

OFN looks forward to a continued partnership with the USDA to provide access to much-needed resources and capital in rural communities, and plan to highlight the Community Facilities program as part of our upcoming OFN Conference in Atlanta next week.

View the list of awardees:

Organization Name

Loan Amount

Grant Amount

Arcata Economic Development Corporation

 $2,000,000

 $335,000

Building Hope

 $25,000,000

 

Carolina Small Business Development Fund

 $5,000,000

 $502,500

Citizen Potawatomi Community Development Corporation

 $25,000,000

 $837,500

Coastal Enterprises, Inc.

 $20,000,000

 $1,340,000

Community Ventures

 $10,000,000

 $1,005,000

Craft3

 $20,000,000

 $2,000,000

Dakota Resources

 $10,000,000

 $1,125,000

Federation of Appalachian Housing Enterprises, Inc.

 $50,000,000

 $1,340,000

Hope Credit Union

 $30,000,000

 $1,340,000

Hope Enterprise Corporation

 $10,000,000

 $1,200,000

Kentucky Highlands Investment Corp 

 $25,000,000

 $837,500

Local Initiatives Support Corporation

 $20,000,000

 $670,000

Montana & Idaho Community Development Corporation

 $10,000,000

 $750,000

National Council on Agricultural Life & Labor Research Fund, Inc.

 $5,000,000

 $335,000

North Carolina Community Development Initiative Capital, Inc.

 $5,000,000

 $1,006,106

Rural Community Assistance Corporation

 $30,000,000

 $1,340,000

Rural Electric Economic Development, Inc

 $10,000,000

 $1,045,000

South Carolina Community Loan Fund

 $10,000,000

 $1,340,000

 

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