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USDA Rural Development Administrator talks Energy in Ohio

As America dedicates more resources to researching, developing and deploying new energy production technologies to help reduce its dependence on petroleum imported from abroad, positive discussions are occurring among energy industry leaders about the environmental and economic impact adopting these emerging technologies might have nationally.

USDA Rural Development Administrator for Business and Cooperative Programs, Judith Canales, returned to Ohio earlier this week to participate in the 3rd Annual Globalization and the Midwest Conference. Incorporating the conference’s theme of Financing the Midwest Energy Transition, Canales focused her remarks on the financing role Rural Development could play in both the Midwest and national energy transition activities.

Held at the City Club of Cleveland, the day-long conference incorporated several interactive panel discussions that included moderators and panelists who are positioned to make significant contributions to the success of the Midwest energy industry’s production efforts. Topics ranged from the theoretical development of new energy sources and production techniques, evaluating infrastructure needs, to the importance of re-educating local workforces to ensure the availability of trained, dependable employees possessing energy related development and production skills.

To further link the energy theme to her Ohio visit, Canales spent the afternoon meeting with the owners of Pride of the Hills Manufacturing, Inc. An Ohio company that supports the natural gas industry, Pride of the Hills was awarded $1,940,000 in financing through the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (Recovery Act), directed through Rural Development’s Business and Industry Guaranteed Loan Program. The company will use the money to modernize their equipment, improve operational efficiency and add 49 new jobs.

Pride of the Hills manufactures high pressure gas valves and vessels, along with other natural gas field equipment. Manufacturing equipment to support the natural gas industry for more than 30 years, Pride of the Hills serves customers focusing on gas production in Eastern Ohio, Pennsylvania and West Virginia.

Canales toured the Pride of the Hills facility and discussed Rural Development’s support of the nation’s commitment to create new energy production technologies. She lauded the company for their contributions to regional energy development and assured continued Rural Development assistance to both local and national businesses who vigorously embrace the nation’s goal of energy independence.

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