Article By: Abby Wright
Community facilities that provide public services such as community support, education, safety, utilities, healthcare, and government are essential, but maintenance and improvements are costly.
The United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) Community Facilities Direct Loan and Grant Program aids small communities with the purchase, construction, and/or improvement of essential community facilities, including equipment purchases and other related expenses, such as engineering and administrative fees.
CEDA Vice President, Chris Giesen, has authored and was awarded the Community Facilities Direct Grant in 2016, 2019, and 2020 on behalf of Harmony, MN—totaling $117,510 toward the installation of an emergency/backup electric generator at the city’s wastewater treatment plant, as well as the purchase of other equipment for the ambulance and public works.
The Community Facilities Direct loan may span up to 40 years, and the grant may fund up to 75% of eligible project costs up to the grant maximum, which depends on the population and median household income of the city. The loan and grant may be used in combination, and both programs are ongoing.