Today, Representative Cindy Axne (IA-03) voted to endorse the House Agriculture Committee’s portion of the Build Back Better Act, which includes provisions she fought for to support biofuel infrastructure and rural business owners.
Legislation approved today includes $ 18 billion in investment in promoting rural employment through rural development from the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) and an additional $ 7.75 billion for support agricultural research and infrastructure.
“From investments in our rural businesses to funding key infrastructure to promote biofuels and other clean energy sources, this section of the Build Back Better Act will support communities in Iowa and pave the way for a cleaner environment.” for us and our children. ” said representative Axne. “I appreciate President Scott’s leadership and openness to hearing the priorities I have presented to him on behalf of the Iowans I represent – and look forward to seeing how this section will be supported by other key provisions of our. Build Back Better program. “
The bill includes in particular $ 1 billion to support the expansion of biofuels infrastructure, a key priority for Axne, and $ 400 million for loan relief to rural borrowers, initially offered by Axne as part of its Rural Equal Aid Act.
Funding for biofuel infrastructure will allow USDA to provide grants over the next 8 years to expand biofuel pump infrastructure, upgrade existing tanks and pumps, and increase the use of higher blends. ethanol and biodiesel.
The Financing of the Rural Equal Aid Act would provide six-month payment of the loan amount for borrowers using three USDA loan programs:
- Business and industry loans made to small businesses, cooperatives and non-profit organizations to develop and expand businesses in rural areas.
- Two loan programs carried out through small local intermediaries. Borrowers in these programs are often unable to access other credit and may not have been able to use the paycheck protection program because they do not have existing banking relationships.
- The Intermediate loan program, which provides loans of up to $ 250,000 to borrowers who cannot obtain credit elsewhere but need capital to start or grow their business. These loans are on average less than $ 100,000 and support small local businesses.
- The Rural Microentrepreneur Assistance Program (RMAP), which offers loans of up to $ 50,000 through local nonprofits. These loans are available to businesses with no more than 10 employees, making them a popular choice for entrepreneurs looking for capital to start a new business. In addition, RMAP loans are frequently used by women entrepreneurs.
The invoice also includes:
- $ 4 billion for a new rural partnership program to help small rural communities with community and economic development
- $ 3.65 billion for research facilities, such as land-subsidized universities like Iowa State University, to ensure the United States is not overspent on agricultural research and infrastructure development
- $ 2.6. billion dollars for the Rural Energy for America Program (REAP) to provide grants to farmers and small businesses to improve the energy efficiency of their operations
The Agriculture Committee section of the Build Back Better Act will be added to sections approved by other committees which will be compiled by the House Budget Committee later this month before moving upstairs. of the House for final approval.
“Although I will hold my final decision on this package until I see the full invoice, seeing these investments included will be an essential part of my choice” Representative Axne added.