Distance Learning and Telemedicine Loans and Grants

What is the aim of the Distance Learning and Telemedicine Loans and Grants?

To encourage and improve the use of telemedicine, telecommunications, computer networks, and related advanced technologies to provide educational and medical benefits through distance learning and telemedicine projects to people living in rural areas and to improve rural opportunities.

Who is Eligible to Apply for the Distance Learning and Telemedicine Loans and Grants?

To be eligible to receive a grant, loan and grant combination, or loan, the applicant must be legally organized as an incorporated organization or partnership, an Indian tribe or tribal organization, a state or local unit of government, a consortium, or other legal entity. The applicant must have legal capacity to contract with RUST.

he applicant also must propose to utilize the financing to: (i) operate a rural community facility; or (ii) deliver distance learning or telemedicine services to entities that operate a rural community facility or to residents of rural areas at rates calculated to ensure that the benefit of the financial assistance is passed through to such entities or to residents of rural areas. The applicant must not be delinquent on any Federal debt. RUS electric and telecommunications borrowers are not eligible for grants. Generally, applicants are organizations such as schools, libraries, hospitals, medical centers, or other eligible organizations that will be users of a telecommunications, computer network, or related advanced technology system to provide educational and/or medical benefits to rural residents.

How and Where to Apply for the Distance Learning and Telemedicine Loans and Grants?

Submit application Form 424; non-delinquent on any Federal obligations; consultation with USDA State Director (for grant applicants); evidence of legal existence and authority to perform the proposed grant activities; a comprehensive rural telecommunications plan; scope of work plan, executive summary for the project: financial information; a statement of experience; funding commitment from other sources; compliance with Federal statutes and regulations (compliance with scoring criteria) and environmental impact; supplemental information and required additional RUS information.

How much is the Range and Average of Financial Assistance of Distance Learning and Telemedicine Loans and Grants?

The minimum grant, loan, or loan/grant combination is $50,000. The maximum varies and is not to exceed the amount established by the RUS Administrator.

For more information on the Distance Learning and Telemedicine Loans and Grants, contact:

Headquarters Office
Assistant Administrator, Telecommunications Program, Rural Utilities Service, 1400 Independence Avenue, S.W., STOP 1590, Washington, District of Columbia 20250
Phone: (202) 720-9554
Web Site Address: http://www.usda.gov/rus/telecom/dlt/dlt.htm

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