Rural Energy for America Program (REAP) Loan Guarantees and Grants

Program Name: Rural Energy for America Program (REAP) Loan Guarantees and Grants
Program Sponsor: USDA (Federal)
Program Type:          Incentives (Grants & Loan Funding)
Technology:               Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy Systems
Eligibility:                        Agricultural Producers and Rural Small Businesses
Cost:  Application Based
Deadline: March 31, 2021

Description

The program provides guaranteed loan financing and grant funding to agricultural producers and rural small businesses to install renewable energy systems or to make energy efficiency improvements.

Eligibility

  • Small businesses, as defined by the Small Business Administration’s (SBA) small business size standards NAICA code, located in eligible rural areas with populations of 50,000 residents or less
  • Agricultural producers with at least 50 percent of their gross income coming from agriculture operations

Small business can use the Rural Business Services database to determine if the business is located in an eligible area (agricultural producers in rural or non-rural areas are eligible).

How the Program Works

Rural small businesses or agricultural producers can apply to REAP for either grants or loan guarantees to improve the efficiency of existing energy-using operations or to install new renewable energy systems. Agricultural producers may also apply for new energy efficient equipment and new system loans for agricultural production and processing.

The amount of federal assistance available is as follows:

  • Grants of up to 25% of eligible project costs, not to exceed 250,000 for energy efficiency projects and $500,000 for renewable energy.
  • Loan guarantees on loans up to 75% of eligible project costs, not to exceed $25 million.
  • Combined grant and loan funding up to 75% of total eligible project costs.

Under the program, project developers work with local lenders, who in turn can apply to the USDA Rural Development for a loan guarantee. The applicable terms of the loan guarantee include:

  • REAP loans approved in Fiscal Year 2021 will receive an 80% guarantee.
  • Initial guarantee fee equal to 1% of the guaranteed amount.
  • Annual renewal fee equal to 0.25% of the guaranteed amount.
  • Fee for issuance of the loan note guarantee prior to construction completion is 0.5% of the guaranteed amount.
  • Loan interest rates are negotiated between the lender and borrower.

How to Apply

The USDA recommends applicants contact their state Rural Development Energy Coordinator (listed below) before filling out any application materials.

Applicants must be pre-registered with the System for Award Management (SAM) and also have a Data Universal Number System (DUNS) number (neither of these applications cost money, but they can take time).

Contact Information

New York’s Rural Development Energy Coordinator:
Gary Pereira, USDA Rural Development
(315) 570- 2233
Gary.pereira@usda.gov