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Agriculture Secretary Announces Smart Grid, Transmission System Improvements

August 29, 2011

On August 29, Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack announced that rural electric cooperative utilities will receive funding for smart grid technologies and improvements to generation and transmission facilities. The $900 million in loans are provided by USDA Rural Development's Rural Utilities Service (RUS) to help electric utilities upgrade, expand, maintain and replace rural America's electric infrastructure. RUS funding will help build nearly 1,500 miles of line and improve more than 1,700 miles of existing line in rural areas. More than $19 million will finance smart grid technologies. USDA Rural Development also funds energy conservation and renewable energy projects. See the list of utilities.

—Julie Jones