The US Department of Agriculture recently announced the investment of almost $12 million in 41 community facilities projects that will benefit 214,000 Americans.

The City of Metter is among the larger recipients in this round of awards.

In one appropriation, Metter was awarded a $318,000 loan and a $50,000 grant for the purchase of a new fire truck.

This Rural Development investment will be used to purchase a new fire truck for the city of Metter replacing a 1987 model. The new truck will also serve as an engine and rescue truck. It will have a pumping capacity of 2,000 gallons per minute and will hold 1,000 gallons of water. The truck will enable the fire and rescue department to provide better and more efficient responses to incidents anywhere in the city or county. Metter Fire and Rescue is contracted with Candler County to provide fire and rescue services in the county.

In a second award, Metter received a $199,000 loan and a $50,000 for fire and rescue equipment. The investment will be used to purchase new and updated public safety radios for the police department as well as the fire department. Metter Fire and Rescue is contracted with Candler County to provide fire and rescue services in the county.

In a statement issued by the agency, USDA Rural Housing Service Administrator Bruce W. Lammers said, “USDA is committed to partnering with rural communities to bring essential facilities and services to rural communities. Investments in our rural areas provide a foundation for growth and prosperity that strengthens the Nation’s overall economy.”

Candler County has an estimated population of 11,000 and a 31.5 percent poverty rate, which was factored into the award amounts. To be eligible, projects must be in rural areas with a population of 20,000 or less.

USDA will make additional funding announcements in coming weeks. Congress appropriated $2.8 billion for Community Facilities direct loans and grants in fiscal year 2019.

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Jessica Szilagyi
Jessica Szilagyi is a Statewide Contributor for AllOnGeorgia.com. She focuses primarily on state and local politics as well as agricultural news. She has a background in Political Science, with a focus in local government, and has a Master of Public Administration from the University of Georgia.She's a "Like It Or Not" contributor for Fox5 in Atlanta and has two blogs of her own: The Perspicacious Conservative and "Hair Blowers to Lawn Mowers."

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