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Rural businesses to benefit from OSU/USDA loans

Tuesday, December 5, 2006

Ken McConkey, N.E. Oklahoma Field Representative for Senator Jim Inhofe; Janis Schallner, Financial Assistant, OSU Center for Innovation and Economic Development, Inc.; Brent Kisling, USDA Rural Development State Director; Joe Alexander (seated), President and Director of External Relations, OSU Center for Innovation and Economic Development, Inc.; Wes Devero, Consultant, OSU Center for Innovation and Economic Development, Inc.; Tom Gray, Vice President for Economic Development, OSU Center for Innovation and Economic Development, Inc.
(STILLWATER, OK)  - The Oklahoma State University Center for Innovation and Economic Development has been awarded $750,000 by the USDA Rural Development through its Intermediary Relending Program.

“This loan program fits perfectly with part of Oklahoma State University’s land grant mission, to create opportunities for rural areas of the state,” said Joe Alexander, President of the OSU Center for Innovation and Economic Development (CIED).  

“OSU’s CIED is committed to enhancing the economic future of the entire state of Oklahoma, and companies located in rural areas are a big piece of completing the state’s economic puzzle.” Alexander added.

CIED will use the loan to provide financial assistance to public and non-profit organization to enable them to furnish loans for business and community development projects.

“These loan funds will help provide important resources and service to Oklahoma,” said USDA Rural Development state director, Brent Kisling.  “Investing in our rural communities is important to the overall development of our state. USDA Rural Development is proud to partner with OSU in the economic development endeavor.”  

The terms for the $750,000 Intermediary Re-Lending Loan to OSU CIED is 1 percent interest for 30 years.  It is estimated these funds will create or save 617 jobs. OSU CIED officials believe these funds will mean between $125,000 to $150,000 to the companies that qualify and are awarded the low interest loans.  Only companies in communities with a population of less then 25,000 are qualified to apply for the loans.   

CIED Vice President, Tom Gray says in addition to the USDA funds OSU will also use programs already in place like the OSU Food Product Center to help these rural companies succeed.  

“OSU has a long history of reaching out and aiding rural Oklahoma.  These funds will help continue that tradition and connect rural company owners with all that OSU has to offer them in developing products and growing their companies,” Gray said.  

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