Project Financing Loans
The Rural Utilities Service (RUS or Agency) is considering regulatory reforms to codify statutory changes related to ``project financing'' requirements to advance the agency's rural development mission and improve its ability to finance electric infrastructure projects, including those that use renewable sources of energy. RUS is also considering regulations to clarify the agency's procedures for single asset/project financing arrangements for all RUS eligible projects. This advance notice of proposed rulemaking seeks comments on the parameters necessary to more effectively and prudently use project financing in the RUS electric loan program and will serve several purposes. It will assist the agency to gather information and comments about its ability to make loans for renewable electric generation even where the consumers may be non-rural residents. It will help develop a record on industry standards and public recommendations related to financing arrangements and collateral requirements which could be used to implement a focused Project Financing Program (PFP) for investments in electric generation, transmission, and distribution facilities, including plant necessary for generating electricity from renewable energy sources. It will also help the agency better understand the potential demand for financing utilizing either or both of the aforementioned authorities, collect comments from potential applicants and co-lenders on PFP, terms, and renewable energy financing as well as help inform the public about federal financing options available through the RUS Electric Loan Program. The RUS is also announcing a public meeting for interested parties to express their views on the opportunities and challenges related to the use of the agency's authority for electric generation from renewable energy sources and project financing within the electric utility sector.
Rural Determination and Financing Percentage
The Rural Utilities Service (RUS or Agency) is proposing policies and procedures for determining rural eligibility for all loans and loan guarantee financial assistance. In addition, policies and procedures are proposed for determining the percentage of total project costs the Agency will finance where the project supplies electricity to an electric utility serving an area that is less than 100 percent rural. By codifying these policies and procedures the agency will provide needed flexibility in the methods utilized to determine eligibility and percentage of financing.