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Agriculture Secretary Vilsack Awards $794 Million in Electric Loans to Bolster Rural Infrastructure


Investments Will Benefit 25,000 Rural Customers in 19 States

WASHINGTON. - Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack today announced that 23 rural utilities and cooperatives in 19 states have been selected to receive $794 million in loans to build and repair 3,373 miles of distribution and transmission lines and make system improvements that will benefit 24,959 rural customers.

“USDA partners with cooperatives across the country to ensure the delivery of affordable, reliable electrical power to rural communities,” Vilsack said. “The loans announced today are an investment in rural communities as well as the people who live there. These funds will also increase economic development opportunities and enhance critical infrastructure.”

For example, the $25.6 million loan guarantee for North Arkansas Electric Cooperative will finance $8 million in repairs for storm damage. In addition, $17.6 million will reimburse North Arkansas for expenses to construct and improve more than 90 miles of line for 1,306 customers. North Arkansas Electric Cooperative serves 35,605 members in six counties in north central Arkansas.

In southeastern Ohio, a $16 million loan guarantee for Buckeye Rural Electric Cooperative will finance approximately 220 miles of line that will benefit 19,372 consumers in the hilly, wooded terrain of the Ohio Appalachians. Approximately 67 miles of the line will serve 960 new consumers.

Below is a complete list of the selected borrowers. Funding of each loan recipient is contingent upon the recipient meeting the conditions of the loan agreement.


North Arkansas Electric Cooperative - $25,641,000 loan


Escambia River Electric Cooperative - $16,000,000 loan


Tri-County Electric Membership Corporation - $31,507,000 loan

Oglethorpe Power Corporation - $310,228,000 loan


Southern Indiana Rural Electric Cooperative, Inc. - $10,000,000 loan


Pioneer Electric Cooperative, Inc. - $12,078,000 loan

Bluestem Electric Cooperative, Inc. - $5,200,000 loan


Salt River Electric Cooperative Corporation - $20,873,000 loan


Steele-Waseca Cooperative Electric - $13,835,000 loan

People’s Cooperative Services - $41,340,000 loan


Ozark Border Electric Cooperative - $6,715,000 loan


Yellowstone Valley Electric Cooperative, Inc. - $13,000,000 loan

North Dakota:

Burke-Divide Electric Cooperative, Inc. - $5,500,000 loan

Dakota Valley Electric Cooperative, Inc. - $15,000,000 loan

North Central Electric Cooperative, Inc. - $15,000,000 loan

Basin Electric Power Cooperative - $76,175,000 loan

Basin Electric Power Cooperative - $85,000,000 loan


The Frontier Power Company - $5,000,000 loan

Buckeye Rural Electric Cooperative - $16,000,000 loan


Southeastern Electric Cooperative - $3,941,000 loan

Harmon Electric Association - $9,893,000 loan

South Carolina:

Tri-County Electric Cooperative, Inc. - $38,795,000 loan

Newberry Electric Cooperative, Inc. - $17,470,000 loan

Through its Cooperative Programs office, USDA Rural Development assists the nation’s cooperatives by producing educational materials, performing development and technical assistance work, compiling agricultural statistics and conducting research on issues critical to cooperatives.

USDA Rural Development’s mission is to increase economic opportunity and improve the quality of life for rural residents. Rural Development fosters growth in homeownership, finances business development, and supports the creation of critical community and technology infrastructure. Further information on rural programs is available at a local USDA Rural Development office or by visiting USDA Rural Development’s web site at


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