USDA Rural Development Issues Funds to Cooperative Energy for Work in 55 Counties

WASHINGTON, D.C. – U.S. Senator Cindy Hyde-Smith (R-Miss.) today announced the award of a $148.8 million loan to a Hattiesburg-based rural electric partnership to finance system upgrades for a rural electric system serving 55 Mississippi counties.

The Electric Loan Program financing to Cooperative Energy of Hattiesburg is among the awards issued to improve rural electricity service in 13 states.  The loan program is administered by U.S. Department of Agriculture Rural Development.

“Greater demands are being made of rural electric cooperatives, and this long-term loan will allow Cooperative Energy to take on the evolving needs of rural Mississippians,” Hyde-Smith said.  “I’m grateful USDA Rural Development is making this financing available.”

The 35-year loan will support environmental upgrades, gas turbine replacement, transmission line and substation construction, and other improvements within Cooperative Energy’s jurisdiction, which includes 11 generation and transmission members in southern and western Mississippi.

Cooperative Energy partnership provides electricity service to approximately 1 million residents in Adams, Amite, Attala, Bolivar, Carroll, Clarke, Coahoma, Copiah, Covington, Choctaw, Claiborne, DeSoto, Franklin, Forrest, George, Greene, Grenada, Hancock, Harrison, Hinds, Holmes, Humphreys, Issaquena, Jackson, Jasper, Jefferson Davis, Jones, Lamar, Lawrence, Leake, Leflore, Lincoln, Marion, Montgomery, Newton, Pearl River, Perry, Pike, Quitman, Rankin, Scott, Sharkey, Smith, Stone, Sunflower, Tallahatchie, Tunica, Walthall, Warren, Washington, Wayne, Webster, Wilkinson, and Yazoo.

Hyde-Smith serves on the Senate Agriculture Committee, as well as the Senate Appropriations Subcommittee on Agriculture, Rural Development, Food and Drug Administration, and Related Agencies.