Maryland-Delaware RD office open for business (Keeping the Farm)
(Editor’s note: Denise Lovelady is the state director for USDA Rural Development in Maryland and Delaware.)
The Delaware/Maryland Rural Development team has been operating under an enterprise-wide remote status since the last week of March, and I am inspired every day by the resilience, adaptability and innovation that our staff demonstrates amidst this COVID-19 pandemic.
They continue our important work delivering all 40-plus programs efficiently and effectively.
I must admit that I do look forward to the day when we can resume our daily activities in person.
For now, we’re relegated to working from home, our kids are going to school online and the world is heavily dependent on technology that is not available to everyone, especially those of us living in rural communities.
The COVID-19 response has reinforced what we’ve known for some time, but now it’s more of a priority than ever before: Infrastructure is all about connections — connecting a business to its customer, connecting a farmer to his market, connecting rural homes to clean water, connecting patients to specialized healthcare or connecting students to a world of knowledge.
You can be sure that infrastructure is a top priority for this presidential administration and for Rural Development, and that’s why I’m excited to share this information about our Distance Learning and Telemedicine Program.
The USDA recently announced the opening of a second application window for funding under the Distance Learning and Telemedicine grant program.
Rural Development was provided an additional $25 million in the CARES Act for the DLT grant program.
This program helps rural communities use the unique capabilities of telecommunications to connect to each other and to the world, overcoming the effects of remoteness and low population density.
For example, this program can link teachers and medical service providers in one area to students and patients in another providing services and specialization that most likely would not be available to residents in rural communities.
DLT 100-percent grant applications are accepted through a competitive process.
Eligible applicants include most state and local governmental entities, federally recognized tribes, consortia of eligible entities, nonprofit organizations — and this funding is also available to “for-profit” businesses.
Electronic applications for Window Two may be submitted through Grants.gov beginning April 14, and are due no later than July 13.
Paper applications will not be accepted under the second window.
Additional information on how to apply is available on the USDA Rural Development website by visiting www.rd.usda.gov/programs-services/distancelearning or visiting Grants.gov.
Interested parties and potential applicants should contact me at email@example.com or our Delaware/Maryland Rural Utilities General Field Representative, Richard Jenkins, at firstname.lastname@example.org.
In conclusion, I want to express that the Rural Development Delaware/Maryland team is open for business and here to serve our rural communities.
Under the leadership of President Donald Trump and Agriculture Secretary Sonny Perdue, we commit to be a strong partner to rural America.
While working remotely, we remain dedicated to the timely delivery of our programs.
I believe our programs make a difference for rural Delaware and Maryland and when we work together, America prospers.
1-800-634-5021 410-822-3965 Fax- 410-822-5068
P.O. Box 2026 Easton, MD 21601-8925