USDA Rural Development announces energy audit applications now being accepted
USDA Rural Development Acting State Director Darla Buckman reminded Kansans that the Agency is accepting funding applications from eligible entities for grants to conduct energy audits under the Rural Energy for America Program.
Secretary of Agriculture Tom Vilsack said, "For the first time ever, USDA will make grant funding available this year through the Rural Energy for America Program to help agricultural producers and rural small businesses obtain audits to identify ways to improve energy efficiency. The assistance provided by this program is in keeping with President Obama's energy conservation goals for our nation." The program is authorized in Section 9007 of the 2008 farm bill.
The audits are intended to help rural small businesses and agricultural producers determine where to make changes in their operations to enable them to reduce energy consumption. Audits are required for renewable energy and energy efficiency projects funded through REAP that exceed $50,000. States, tribal and local governments, land grant colleges or universities, other institutions of higher learning, and electric cooperatives and public power entities are eligible to receive funds to conduct the audits. Parties seeking audits from the grantees must pay 25 percent of audit costs.
Applications for grants must be completed and submitted on paper or electronically no later than June 9. For further details about eligibility rules and application procedures, see page 10533 of the March 11, Federal Register at http://www.gpoaccess.gov/fr/. USDA Rural Development intends to publish and seek public comment on a proposed regulation for the REAP program later this year.
USDA Rural Development's mission is to deliver programs that support increasing economic opportunities and enhancing the quality of life for rural Americans. USDA Rural Development provides equity and technical assistance to finance and foster growth in homeownership, business development, and critical community and technology infrastructure in rural America. For additional information regarding all USDA Rural Development programs, contact the Agency at 785-271-2700 or visit the Agency's Kansas website at www.rurdev.usda.gov/ks.
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