White House announces $10B fund for rural communities

McClatchy Washington BureauJuly 24, 2014 


Chris Drew, production manager at Sea Mist Farms, walks around the irrigation system that sprays recycled water on artichoke plants in Salinas, California, January 29, 2009.


The White House, though its rural council (yes, there is one), will announce a new $10 billion dollar investment fund Thursday to promote economic development in rural regions.

CoBank, a national cooperative bank serving rural America and a member of the Farm Credit System, is contributing the first $10 billion to get the fund off the ground. The administration hopes others will contribute.

The fund will allow pension funds, endowments, foundations and other institutional investors that may not have invested before to get involved. Some projects may be funded entirely through private companies while others will paid for with both public and private dollars.

The administration hopes to help pay for health care and educational facilities, water and wastewater systems, energy projects, broadband expansion and local and regional food systems.

The announcement will take place during the Rural Opportunity Investment Conference (yes, there is one of those too) which brings together businesses, banks, government and, of course, experts rural America.

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