USDA to Prioritize Investments That Address Top Challenges in Rural Communities

Projects to Help Combat the COVID-19 Pandemic, Address Impacts of Climate Change and Advance Equity Will Receive Funding Priority

U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) Deputy Under Secretary for Rural Development Justin Maxson today announced that USDA Rural Development will give funding priority for projects to address some of the top challenges in rural America.

This funding priority supports the Biden-Harris Administration’s mission to help the people of rural America build back better. USDA will notify stakeholders that a program is offering funding priority when the program’s application window opens and will continuously update the Priority Points Program Chart.

Rural Development will award priority points on funding applications for projects that will:

  1. Help rural communities recover economically from the impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic, particularly in disadvantaged communities.
  2. Ensure all rural residents have equitable access to Rural Development programs and will benefit from projects Rural Development funds.
  3. Reduce climate pollution and increase resiliency to the impacts of climate change by providing economic support to rural communities.

USDA is incorporating these key priorities into its work across the agency. The Department is working with our partners to encourage potential applicants to focus on strategic investments that complement these priorities.

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Application scoring criteria for the programs offering priority points will be included in funding announcements and published in the Federal Register when the application window opens.

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