USDA Rural Development awards loans and grants in Harlan County

Published: Oct. 30, 2020 at 5:46 PM EDT
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HARLAN COUNTY, Ky. (WYMT) - On Friday, The United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) awarded loans and grants to businesses and organizations in Harlan County.

JRL Coal, based out of Georgia but has coal mines in Harlan County, received a business and industry guaranteed loan.

“Capital markets are very difficult right now for coal companies, and we have to look at programs like this that are provided by the USDA Rural Development to access capital," said CEO of JRL Energy Tim Lusby.

Hilda Legg, State Director of USDA Rural Development, said they were able to provide the loan from the CARES Act money the organization received.

“To help struggling businesses as a result of COVID to get through these very trying times," said Legg,

Not only does this help the coal company during COVID-19, but it also helps more than one hundred workers keep their jobs.

“Ultimately, it’s going to help strengthen the coal company and help us get through, we’re very fortunate that we have contracts through 2021,” added Lusby.

Community Action KY INC, parent organization to Rural Community Assistance Program (RCAP), which helps in building hospitals, community centers and has a mission to provide clean drinking to rural communities received more than $100,000 grant.

The City of Evarts also received a $50,000 Community Facilities grant to buy two new trucks for its police department.

“Harlan County had the need, Harlan County applied for the money, Harlan County’s leadership supported that and we felt that it was a great place to invest our rural development dollars," added Legg.

The loans and grants received will put money back into the county.

“These people have the greatest work ethic, it’s just like the World War 2 generation, and it’s something they really need to be proud of," said Lusby.

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