farm bill http://hppr.org en How are decisions made about projects that benefit rural America? http://hppr.org/post/how-are-decisions-made-about-projects-benefit-rural-america <p></p><p><span style="line-height: 1.5;">The U.S. Department of Agriculture first began designating funds for rural development in 1933 as part of the New Deal. More federal funds were allocated in the Agricultural Act of 1970. During this fiscal year, the rural development program is administering approximately $38 billion in loans, loan guarantees and grants. It’s being used to construct or improve 48 rural libraries, assist 243 projects in the delivery of healthcare and help more than 270,000 low income families get affordable housing, according to the USDA.</span></p> Mon, 17 Jun 2013 05:01:02 +0000 Abbie Fentress Swanson 17156 at http://hppr.org How are decisions made about projects that benefit rural America? Budget cuts and wider competition for USDA's 'rural' dollars http://hppr.org/post/budget-cuts-and-wider-competition-usdas-rural-dollars <p></p><p><span style="line-height: 1.5;">&nbsp;&nbsp;</span>&nbsp;&nbsp;<span style="line-height: 1.5;">As lawmakers debate the Farm Bill in Washington, millions of dollars are at stake for small businesses across the country. Rural development grants go out to everything from home loans to water projects to small co-ops.</span></p> Fri, 14 Jun 2013 05:01:01 +0000 Luke Runyon 17155 at http://hppr.org Budget cuts and wider competition for USDA's 'rural' dollars Lifeblood for rural communities: federal funds http://hppr.org/post/lifeblood-rural-communities-federal-funds <p></p><p>As Congress fiddles with major farm legislation, there’s a portion of it that gets very little attention. Some say it is a difference-maker for job creation in small rural communities and provides a boost those towns need. Harvest Public Media’s Bill Wheelhouse reports.</p><p><span style="line-height: 1.5;">In the small town of Staunton, Ill., the new $9 million water plant is a welcome addition. After all, when the 80-year-old facility it replaces seized up last year, the community’s 5,000 residents were without water for five days.&nbsp;</span></p> Thu, 13 Jun 2013 05:01:01 +0000 Bill Wheelhouse 17153 at http://hppr.org Lifeblood for rural communities: federal funds