Someone at USDA Rural Development is racking up some serious hotel points.
News releases about USDA funding programs come out frequently and we often scan them to see what they are all about and then quickly move on.
On Tuesday, USDA Rural Development put out a release about $770 million for 154 investments in rural business in 36 states and Puerto Rico, including $640 million for 122 projects "to help people living in socially vulnerable communities."
There are an array of businesses receiving these funds. Here are just a few projects that stuck out from the list provided by USDA.
Two projects in South Carolina will use a combined $42.85 million in loans to install 208 megawatts of solar arrays for two separate companies. Combined, the two projects will produce enough power for nearly 33,500 homes.
In Arkansas, Riceland Seed Co., dba Stratton Seed Co., is receiving a $10 million loan to refinance maturing debt and provide working capital. Also in Arkansas, Pine Belt Cellular is receiving a $10 million loan to restructure debt to continue expanding cellular services.
A $25 million loan guarantee will refinance debt for a wellness facility in Milford, Delaware.
Then there are projects such as upgrading or expanding truck stops or camping spots. Other projects include hospital upgrades in Iowa; a methane digester in Idaho; a beef processing facility in Idaho; loans for a new barge cleaning company in Louisiana; a cottonseed cooperative in Mississippi; multiple assisted living and nursing home projects; funds for community firefighters; working capital for a glass fiber yarn company in Aiken, South Carolina, that will save 588 jobs in the area; and expansion of a welding school in Gillette, Wyoming.
Yet, the biggest trend in the list of businesses and funding approvals is in the hospitality industry where USDA is backing a lot of hotel investments nationally. The funding involves $216.85 million in Business and Industry Loan Guarantees to buy, refinance or renovate 31 hotels and motels across the country. The loans ultimately come from lenders, but repayment is guaranteed by the federal government.
The list of projects for hotels includes:
$8 million to buy Beaver Lakefront Resort near Eureka Springs, Arkansas.
$11.75 million to buy a Hampton Inn near Lake Powell, Arizona.
$20 million to help build a Residence Inn in Paso Robles, California.
$4.335 million to buy and refinance a Hampton Inn in Perry, Florida.
$17 million to build a Courtyard Marriott in Lake City, Florida.
$3.25 million to refinance a Best Western in Bowling Green, Florida.
$5.3 million for a Fairfield Inn in Milledgeville, Georgia.
$3.49 million to buy a Red Lion Inn in Twin Falls, Idaho.
$5 million to buy a Candlewood Suites in Iberia, Louisiana.
$8 million to refinance debt for a Holiday Inn Express in LaPlace, Louisiana.
$5.18 million for a Hampton Inn in Gaylord, Michigan.
$7.84 million to buy a Comfort Suites in Bozeman, Montona.
$2.65 million to buy a Quality Inn in Aberdeen, North Carolina.
$3.75 million to buy a Quality Inn and Suites in Carlsbad, New Mexico.
$9.45 million to buy a Holiday Inn Express in Mesquite, Nevada.
$25 million to build Residence Inn in Hyde Park, New York.
$3.5 million to renovate the Queensbury Hotel in Glens Falls, New York.
$4.5 million to refinance a Hampton Inn in Tiffin, Ohio.
$4.2 million to buy a Country Inn & Suites near Sandusky, Ohio.
$4.45 million to buy an unidentified hotel in Wooster, Ohio.
$2.48 million to remodel a Ramada Inn in Enid, Oklahoma.
$4.6 million to refinance and upgrade a hotel to become a Candlewood Suites in Duncan, Oklahoma.
$4.1 million to buy a La Quinta Inn in Eagle Pass, Texas.
$4.49 million to buy a Holiday Inn Express in Hearne, Texas.
$17.8 million to refinance a Wingate Inn in Moab, Utah.
$1.88 million to buy a Best Western in Tooele, Utah.
$2 million to buy the Oquirrh Mountain Inn in Lake Point, Utah.
$4.9 million to finance the buyout of a partner in the Essex Resort and Spa in Essex Junction, Vermont.
$7 million to buy a Best Western in Wenatchee, Washington.
$3.18 million to refinance a hotel in Pierce County, Washington.
$7.78 million to buy a Hampton Inn in Walla Walla, Washington.
I'm no expert on exactly why more than 25% of the funding here involved the hotel industry, but I did stay at a Holiday Inn Express last week.
USDA news release on the funding projects https://www.usda.gov/…
Chris Clayton can be reached at Chris.Clayton@dtn.com
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