Tester Secures Nearly $1.7 Million for Rural Montana Housing & Economic Development

Funding to improve access to housing, Tribal Colleges, and economic development

U.S. Senator Jon Tester today announced $1,689,616 in United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) funding to improve access and quality of affordable housing, Tribal Colleges, and economic development in rural Montana.

“These resources will ensure that folks across Montana have access to affordable housing, education, and employment opportunities that help our communities thrive,” Tester said.

The funding is a part of the USDA’s Rural Development Awards program, and the twelve Montana grants will be distributed through the four programs below:

Rural Community Development Initiative (RCDI):
RCDI grants are awarded to help non-profit housing and community development organizations, low-income rural communities, and federally recognized Tribes to support housing, community facilities, and community and economic development projects in rural areas. The recipients below will use the funding to aid in planning for future community development opportunities and the development of community facilities.

  • $66,480: Lake County Community Development Corporation in Ronan
  • $120,000: Beartooth Resource Conservation & Development Area, Inc. in Joliet

Tribal College Initiative Gants:
Tribal College Initiative Grants provide funding to 1994 Land Grant Institutions (Tribal Colleges) to make capital improvements to their educational facilities and to purchase equipment. The recipients below will use the funding for a range of facility improvements, equipment purchases, and infrastructure upgrades.

  • $175,448: Little Big Horn College in Crow Agency
  • $175,448: Aaniiih Nakoda College in Harlem
  • $175,448: Blackfeet Community College in Browning
  • $175,448: Stone Child College in Box Elder
  • $175,448: Salish-Kootenai College in Pablo
  • $175,448: Fort Peck Community College in Poplar
  • $175,448: Chief Dull Knife College in Lame Deer

Housing Preservation Grants:
Housing Preservation Grants restructure loans for existing Rural Rental Housing and Off-Farm Labor Housing projects to help improve and preserve the availability of safe affordable rental housing for low income residents. The recipients below will use the funding to conduct home repairs for low income, elderly Native American homeowners.

  • $50,000: Confederated Salish and Kootenai Tribes
  • $50,000: Apsaalooke Nation Housing Authority

Socially Disadvantaged Groups Grants:
The primary objective of the Socially Disadvantaged Groups Grant program is to provide technical assistance to socially-disadvantaged groups through cooperatives and Cooperative Development Centers. The recipient below will use funding to improve food distribution and sovereignty for vulnerable communities.

  • $175,000: Montana Cooperative Development Center in Great Falls