USDA announces opportunities to increase economic development in S.D.

Farm Forum

USDA Rural Development Acting Under Secretary Doug O’Brien recently announced the selection of 44 development organizations for the Rural Microloan Assistance Program (RMAP) loans and grants to support rural business activities that will boost economic growth in rural communities, including a $500,000 loan and $100,000 grant to GROW South Dakota.

“The RMAP Loan Program assists GROW South Dakota in meeting the current statewide loan demand for small business start-ups and expansion in our rural communities,” says Lori Finnesand, GROW South Dakota CEO. GROW South Dakota will utilize the RMAP to make direct loans of $50,000 or less to micro-entrepreneurs statewide at fixed interest rates for start-up and expanding microenterprises that cannot obtain similar credit elsewhere and who have not more than 10 employees. Eligible purposes for such microloans will be working capital, inventory or equipment purchases, debt refinancing, acquisition, or real estate.

The RMAP Grant allows GROW South Dakota to provide no-cost technical assistance and training to loan clients in rural areas experiencing persistent poverty or significant outmigration.

Through this announcement, USDA provided over $19 million in RMAP loans and grants to 44 organizations in 23 states to strengthen rural businesses and promote economic development. The funding is contingent upon the recipients meeting the terms of their loan and/or grant agreements.

For more information about GROW South Dakota’s business development programs and services, please visit our website at or call (605) 698-7654.