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Darke County Economic Development...
Rural Energy for America Program (REAP)  
February 3, 2012 

On January 20, 2012, the Rural Business -Cooperative Service invited agricultural producers and rural small businesses to apply for grants and loan guarantees through the Rural Energy for America Program (REAP).  The Rural Energy for America program is design to assist applicants install renewable energy systems and make energy efficiency improvements. Parties interested in applying for the REAP grant only or REAP grant and loan guarantee in combination must submit their complete application to the Ohio Rural Development State Office.  Applications must be received by 4:30 p.m. on March 30, 2012. Parties interested in applying for a loan guarantee only must submit their complete application to the Ohio Rural Development State Office no later than 4:30 p.m. on June 29, 2012. 

Renewable energy systems can include solar electric, solar thermal, wind, geothermal, biomass, blender pumps and anaerobic digestion systems.  Energy efficiency improvement systems can include lighting improvements, insulation, electric motor replacements and other energy efficiency improvement projects as outlined in an energy audit. Grants are available on a competitive basis for up to twenty-five percent of the eligible project costs. Loan guarantees are also available for up to seventy-five percent of the eligible project costs. Combination grant and loan guarantee applications cannot exceed seventy-five percent of eligible project costs. 

Nationally, funding available in Fiscal year 2012 will be used to support REAP grants totaling $12,500,000 and loan guarantees totaling $48,500,000. The funds available for Fiscal Year 2012 are reduced substantially from previous years resulting in increased competition for the limited funding available. 

As in previous years, increased emphasis is being placed on projects which are requesting less than $20,000.  Congress has authorized a specific budget allocation to fund these smaller projects which provide energy efficiencies or can produce renewable energy for the applicant. 

Additional emphasis is being placed upon loan guarantees. The loan guarantee program can be a great benefit to a lender looking to reduce their risk exposure while increasing their income and for a borrower to access capital on better rates and terms resulting in an improved cash flow and a successful business. 

If you are interested in pursuing a grant or loan guarantee for the Rural Energy for America Program, please submit a complete application to the address listed below at your earliest opportunity.  The following individuals can assist in answering questions and providing application documents regarding this program. 

Cindy Musshel, Business Program Assistant
614-255-2427, Cindy.musshel@oh.usda.gov
 

Christie Hooks, Business Program Specialist
614-255-2397, Christie.hooks@oh.usda.gov
 

Randy Monhemius, Business Program Specialist
614-255-2424, Randy.Monhemius@oh.usda.gov
 

USDA, Rural Development, State Office
200 North High Street, Room 507, Columbus, OH 43215
Fax 614-255-2562; www.rurdev.usda.gov



 
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