WASHINGTON, D.C. – Today, U.S. Sen. Sherrod Brown (D-OH), a senior member of the Senate Agriculture Committee, announced $48 million in federal resources to support rural economic development and job creation. Through the Rural Economic Development Loan and Grant (REDLG) program, the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) will make $37 million in zero-interest loans and $11 million in grants available to local utility organizations to create revolving loan funds. These organizations can apply to USDA for funding support on behalf of local projects that create or retain jobs in rural areas.

“Rural communities are the backbone of Ohio’s economy, but in order to thrive, rural businesses need access to capital to allow them to grow their operations and create jobs,” Brown said. “I encourage Ohio communities to take advantage of this opportunity to invest in local economies and local jobs.”

Through his position on the U.S. Senate Agriculture Committee, Brown is a leading advocate for investing in and strengthening rural communities. During consideration of the 2014 Farm Bill, Brown successfully fought to secure strong rural development initiatives that empower communities, encourage small business development, invest in critical infrastructure, and promote collaboration between local governments.