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Rural electric cooperative utilities across 13 states will receive nearly $280 million for grid infrastructure, Tom Vilsack, secretary for the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA), has announced.

The funding, which the department says will increase access to information to better manage electricity use, includes more than $6 million in smart grid funding. In addition, these funds will result in the construction of more than 1,900 miles of new or improved transmission and distribution lines.

The following is a complete list of utilities that will receive USDA funding, contingent upon the recipient meeting the terms of the loan agreement:

  • Colorado: Tri-State Generation and Transmission Association Inc. - $51.75 million. Funds will be used to upgrade and modify existing generation and transmission facilities. It includes $1,659,935 for environmental improvements.
  • Georgia: Irwin Electric Membership Corp. - $25 million. Funds will be used to serve 1,693 customers, build 581 miles of distribution line, and make other system improvements.
  • Georgia, Alabama and Florida: Georgia Transmission Corp. - $90.3 million. Funds will be used to build and improve transmission system projects covering the construction and improvement of 331 miles of line, six new substations, and projects to upgrade existing substations and lines. The loan amount includes $3,091,744 in smart grid projects.
  • Iowa: Butler County Rural Electric Cooperative - $2.5 million. Funds will be used to serve 48 customers, build 15 miles of distribution line, and make other system improvements. The loan amount includes $20,000 for smart grid projects.
  • Kansas: Heartland Rural Electric Cooperative Inc. - $15,185,000. Funds will be used to serve 733 customers, build 242 miles of distribution line, and make other system improvements. The loan amount includes $192,100 for smart grid projects.
  • Kentucky: Meade County Rural Electric Cooperative Corp. - $23,049,000. Funds will be used to serve 2,284 customers, build 403 miles of distribution line, and make other system improvements. The loan amount includes $1,144,344 for smart grid projects.
  • Minnesota: Wild Rice Electric Cooperative Inc. - $12 million. Funds will be used to serve 903 customers, build 106 miles of distribution line, and make other system improvements. The loan amount includes $680,000 for smart grid projects.
  • North Dakota and South Dakota: Mor-Gran-Sou Electric Cooperative Inc. - $15 million.. Funds will be used to serve 624 customers, build 125 miles of distribution line and four miles of transmission line, and make other system improvements. The loan amount includes $447,452 for smart grid projects.
  • South Carolina and North Carolina: New Horizon Electric Cooperative Inc. - $9,779,000. Funds will be used to build five new substations, and make other system improvements.
  • South Dakota: Clay-Union Electric Corp. - $6,871,000. Funds will be used to serve 271 customers, build 118 miles of distribution line, and make other system improvements. The loan amount includes $464,601 for smart grid projects.
  • Texas: San Miguel Electric Cooperative Inc. - $28.3 million. Funds will be used to finance capital projects at the San Miguel Generating Plant, including $9.8 million for projects to reduce air pollution.


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