Howell-Oregon Electric Co-op will benefit from recent federal funding for rural electric cooperative utilities to improve distribution systems and smart grid technologies in 27 states, as part of the Obama Administration's continued focus on investments in infrastructure that create rural jobs. The announcement was made by Agriculture Under Secretary for Rural Development Dallas Tonsager during a speech to the National Rural Electric Association regional meeting in Denver.
"This investment in the electric grid will help address the growing need for electric service nationwide and spur job creation by building out rural infrastructure," Vilsack said. "Smart grid technology can help better manage power use, provide rate stability for businesses and create the climate for job growth in rural America."
More than $2.1 billion in loans are provided by USDA's Rural Utilities Service, a Rural Development Agency, to help rural electric utilities build and upgrade rural America's electric infrastructure. The projects will fund more than $40 million in smart grid technologies and will build or improve nearly 6,000 miles of line. Funding for distribution cooperatives, which provide power to consumers, will benefit over 38,000 rural businesses and residents.
* Howell-Oregon Electric Cooperative will receive a loan of $23,000,000 to build 72 miles of new distribution lines, make improvements to 376 miles of existing distribution lines, and make other system improvements. Howell-Oregon will also receive an additional $84,929 toward smart grid projects.
* Macon Electric Cooperative will receive $10,000,000 to build nearly 72 miles of new distribution lines, make improvements to 25 miles of existing distribution lines, and make other system improvements.
* Pemiscot-Dunklin Electric Cooperative will receive $3,884,000 to build 8 miles of new distribution lines and make other improvements.
* Tri-County Electric Cooperative Association, Inc. will receive $7,110,000 to build 41 miles of new distribution lines and make improvements to 39 miles of existing distribution lines.