Elsie Meeks, South Dakota Rural Development State Director said, “Working with private lenders throughout the state enables USDA Rural Development to increase investment capital, and help communities and local organizations build a strong business infrastructure to nurture economic growth.” In Fiscal Year 2012, South Dakota USDA Rural Development B & I Guaranteed Loan program made available $33.2 million in the state, leveraging $128 million and assisting nine businesses. This economic support created or retained an estimated 109 jobs in the state.
Great Western Bank of Rapid City, First Interstate Bank of Sturgis, BankWest of Pierre and First Interstate Bank of Wall, South Dakota were recently highlighted as top lenders through the B & I program.
“Rural Development has been a great partner for First Interstate Bank and our business loan customers in 2012. Their B&I program has provided us access to long term fixed rate financing for our rural business customers,” said Brett Blasius, President of First Interstate Bank of Wall. “I feel that this partnership has strengthened our rural community by maintaining and in some cases, adding jobs, which are the result of attractive finance options to our customers.”
By investing locally, businesses support higher paying jobs and stronger economies are grown. The relationships that are built between USDA and local lending institutions contribute to the success of the program and economic climate in rural communities. The B & I program provides a guarantee for quality loans and because of this guarantee; lenders can offer businesses more flexible terms enabling expansions and profitability.