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USDA-RD to hold listen posts in Perry, Madrid

By Staff | May 10, 2011

DES MOINES — Bill Menner, USDA Rural Development State Director in Iowa, will be in Madrid from 10 a.m. to 11:30 a.m. and in Perry from 1 p.m. to 2:30 p.m. on Wednesday to listen to local community and economic development leaders, as well as the general public, discuss issues and opportunities they encounter in their ongoing efforts to keep rural Iowa vibrant and prosperous. The Madrid session will take place in the community room adjacent to the fire department, at 304 S. Water St. In Perry, the forum will be held at the ISU Center for Town/Craft, 2nd floor, 1124 Willis Ave. Both sessions are open to the public. In the last 10 years, 66 of our state’s 99 counties have seen a population decline, Menner said. While rural communities and areas are home to 1.7 million Iowans, more than half of Iowa’s nearly 950 cities now have fewer than 500 residents. USDA Rural Development currently administers and manages more than 40 housing, business and community infrastructure and facility loan and grant programs designed to improve the economic stability of rural communities, businesses, residents, farmers and ranchers and improve the quality of life in rural America. During the past year the agency helped a record number of Iowans receive funding for economic development projects and quality of life improvements. The agency’s investment in Iowa helped create or retain more than 2,200 jobs, Menner noted, aided 2,500 families in buying their first homes and assisted more than 250 communities as they made improvements to their facilities, services and infrastructure. For more information about finance programs through USDA Rural Development, contact the office located in Humboldt at (515) 332-4411 Ext. 4. This office serves communities, businesses and residents in Boone, Hamilton, Hancock, Humboldt, Kossuth, Story, Webster, Winnebago and Wright counties.

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