Kentucky Highlands adding technical assistants for area businesses

Nov. 11—The London office of Kentucky Highlands Investment Corporation is getting a boost from a grant from the USDA Rural Development.

Under Secretary for Rural Development, Xochitl Torres Small and Rural Development State Director Tom Carew were in London last week to officially announce the grants.

The London office will receive a $99,999 Rural Development grant to establish a four-person technical team to assist businesses in the Kentucky Highlands' 14-county region.

Sandi Curd with Kentucky Highlands said the grant would benefit small businesses in a multitude of ways.

"If you need a website, we'll help you set one up. If you need more technical services, we can help you," she said. "This grant will benefit small businesses in this region to help them grow and prosper."

A total of $1.25 million in area investments were made through the Meat and Poultry Production Expansion Program, Rural Business Development Grant program and the Community Facilities Program to help improve economic opportunities in rural Kentucky.

"Rural people grow and produce everyday essentials our country depends on, and the Biden-Harris Administration is committed to ensuring they have every opportunity to succeed," said Torres Small. "The investments we're announcing today are just the beginning, as we partner with rural people in Kentucky to strengthen the food supply chain and create jobs and economic opportunities in the places rural people call home."

Other recipients of the funds include Marksbury Farm Foods in Lancaster to expand their slaughter and grind areas and create 25 new jobs.

Hyden-Leslie County Water District received $50,000 Community Facilities grant to purchase a backhoe loader to be used for maintenance calls for preventative and emergency situations, waterline breaks, repairs and to install some water lines. They also received $41,500 grant to buy two Dodge Ram 1500 trucks to assist in operations of the water plant.

Pineville will utilize a $50,000 grant to purchase a police patrol vehicle and a K-9 unit vehicle.

A $50,000 grant to Perry County Fiscal Court will benefit citizens in the county for the purchase of a 74-horsepower diesel Hydro-Jetting Sewer System that has capacity to blow out problematic, blocked sewer lines and for water and sewer maintenance.

The USDA Rural Development provides loans and grants to help expand economic opportunities and improve the quality of life for Americans living in rural areas. The areas included are infrastructure improvements, business development, housing, community facilities such as schools, public safety and health care; and high-speed Internet access in rural, tribal and high-poverty areas.

For more information, visit their website at www.rd.usda.gov.