Rural electric cooperative utilities in 14 states will receive up to $900 million in loans from the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s (USDA’s) Rural Development’s Rural Utilities Service to help them upgrade, expand, maintain, and replace power infrastructure in rural areas of the U.S. The funding, announced on Monday, is expected to support construction of nearly 1,500 miles of line and improve 1,700 miles of existing line.

"Rural electric cooperatives provide direct jobs and support economic growth in our rural communities," Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack said in a statement on Monday. "By financing electrical system improvements USDA and the Obama Administration helps ensure sustainable growth and business job creation. Investments in smart grid technologies will give rural electric utilities and their consumers one more tool to better manage use of electricity, increase reliability and lower costs."

Rural utilities selected to receive USDA funding, which is contingent upon the recipient meeting the terms of the loan agreement, include:

Delaware
Delaware Electric Cooperative, Inc. – $28,300,000, to build 587 miles of new distribution line, improve 55 miles of existing distribution line, and make other system improvements.

Georgia
Ocmulgee Electric Membership Corporation – $8,968,000, to build 238 miles of new distribution line, improve 33 miles of existing distribution line, and make other system improvements.

Iowa
Harrison County Rural Electric Cooperative – $9,000,000, to build 23 miles of new distribution line, improve 389 miles of existing distribution line, and make other system improvements.

Illinois
Illinois Rural Electric Cooperative – $18,196,000, to improve 183 miles of existing distribution line, and make other system improvements.

Illinois and Indiana
Hoosier Energy Rural Electric Cooperative, Inc. – $462,526,000, to finance projects for capital additions, upgrades and replacement of existing generation and transmission facilities; to build 5 miles of new transmission line and improve 71 miles of existing transmission line.

Kansas
Rolling Hills Electric Cooperative, Inc. – $3,720,000, to build 17 miles of new distribution lines and make other system improvements.

Michigan
Great Lakes Energy Cooperative – $42,912,000, to build 122 miles of new distribution line, improve 221 miles of existing distribution line, and make other system improvements.

Minnesota
Crow Wing Cooperative Power and Light Company – $22,400,000, to build 49 miles of new distribution line, improve 147 miles of existing distribution line, and make other system improvements.

Minnesota and Wisconsin
East Central Energy – $50,000,000, to build 174 miles of new distribution line, improve 158 miles of existing distribution line, and make other system improvements.

Missouri
Consolidated Electric Cooperative – $15,980,000, to build 42 miles of new distribution line, improve 25 miles of existing distribution line, and make other system improvements.

Montana
McCone Electric Cooperative, Inc. – $9,364,000, to build 13 miles of new distribution line, improve 61 miles of existing distribution line, and make other system improvements.

Marias River Electric Cooperative, Inc. – $4,260,000, to build 21 miles of new distribution line, improve 12 miles of existing distribution line, and make other system improvements.

Oklahoma
Northeast Oklahoma Electric Cooperative – $23,500,000, to build 37 miles of new distribution line, improve 206 miles of existing distribution line, and make other system improvements.

Oklahoma, Kansas, Texas
Western Farmers Electric Cooperative – $184,100,000, to finance generation and transmission system improvement projects and new construction; to build 16 miles of new transmission line, and improve 18 miles of existing transmission line.

South Dakota
Union County Electric Cooperative, Inc. – $2,690,000, to build 16 miles of new distribution line, make improvements to 26 miles of existing distribution line, and make other system improvements.

Texas
Navarro County Electric Cooperative, Inc. – $15,800,000, to build 148 miles of new distribution line, improve 253 miles of existing distribution line, and make other system improvements.

Sources: POWERnews, USDA