The Delta Grassroots Caucus (DGC) is a broad coalition of grassroots leaders in the eight-state Delta region. DGC is also a founding partner of the Economic Equality Caucus,
which advocates for economic equality across the USA.

USDA Grants Opportunity Regarding Rural Economic Growth--March 23, 2012

Posted on March 23, 2012 at 01:40 PM

The Delta Caucus would like to relay this information from the USDA about the Department’s announcement this week that it is seeking applications for grants through its Rural Community Development Initiative for funding regional economic development strategies to spur economic growth in rural areas.

The deadline is May 9, 2012. For more information on how to apply, please go to, or see the March 21 Federal Register, or go to the USDA Rural Development website at

USDA announced this week that the Department is seeking applications for grants to help rural businesses create jobs and spur economic development. USDA Rural Development plans to award up to $8.6 million through the Rural Community Development Initiative program.

Applications are sought for projects that:

–Provide technical assistance to improve the capacity of local organizations to complete successful housing, economic development and community facilities projects;

–Help recipients complete pre-development requirements – such as architectural and engineering plans;

–Help development organizations improve their board operations, management and knowledge of financial and information technology systems;

–Provide homeownership education or training for entrepreneurs.

Part of the RCDI funds to be awarded may be used for projects associated with the Rural Jobs and Innovation Accelerator Challenge, which was announced on March 8, 2012. This initiative was designed by the Taskforce for the Advancement of Regional Innovation Clusters and the White House Rural Council. Secretary Vilsack chairs the Council. The Jobs Accelerator is being funded by USDA, the U.S. Department of Commerce’s Economic Development Administration, the Delta Regional Authority and the Appalachian Regional Commission.

The deadline for submitting RCDI applications is May 9, 2012. Applications must be submitted to the USDA Rural Development state office where the applicant’s headquarters are located. A list of these offices is available on the USDA Rural Development website. For more information, see the March 21 Federal Register.

The deadline to apply for RCDI funding for Rural Jobs and Innovation Accelerator projects is May 9, 2012. For more information on how to apply, please visit Applications for Jobs Accelerator projects must be submitted to both USDA and the EDA.

USDA, through its Rural Development mission area, administers and manages housing, business and community infrastructure and facility programs through a national network of state and local offices.

Rural Development has an active portfolio of more than $165 billion in affordable loans and loan guarantees. These programs are designed to improve the economic stability of rural communities, businesses, residents, farmers and ranchers and improve the quality of life in rural America.