Graham, NC (Dec. 17, 2021) – Swepsonville Fire Department received a $200,000 zero-interest loan to help pay for their new fire truck. Piedmont Electric Cooperative is playing a supporting role in this purchase by facilitating a loan funded from the United States Department of Agriculture’s (USDA) Rural Economic Development Loan and Grant (REDLG) program.
After significant fire damage to one of their pumper tankers in 2020, Swepsonville Fire Department will gain back a truck to their fleet. This new pumper tanker was built by combining a new 2021 International cab and chassis with the undamaged 2000 gallon tank/body of the original truck.
“This pumper tanker will aid our fire fighters in protecting our 43 square mile fire district that stretches from Graham to Orange County,” said Chief Steve Couturier. “Thanks to these repairs, our truck has been returned to new condition from top to bottom.”
The funds for this truck came from the USDA REDLG program facilitated by Piedmont Electric. The program provides zero-interest funds from the federal government to local electric cooperatives who in turn lend the money to local entities for projects that support rural areas.
“As a locally owned co-op, we have a unique opportunity to support our community by facilitating these zero-interest USDA REDLG loans,” said Steve Hamlin, Piedmont Electric president and general manager. “We are proud to support Swepsonville Fire Department in this way and appreciate all they do to keep our community safe.”
In the past several years, Piedmont Electric has secured more than $14 million in USDA funding within Alamance, Caswell, Durham, Granville, Orange and Person counties for fire trucks, fire stations, ambulances, schools, a public library and a Habitat for Humanity warehouse. As the funds are repaid, they are re-loaned to assist with future projects in communities served by Piedmont Electric.
Piedmont Electric is a local, member-owned, not-for-profit electric cooperative serving more than 33,000 electric accounts in Alamance, Caswell, Durham, Granville, Orange and Person counties. Piedmont Electric exists to serve our members and improve the quality of life in our communities through local employment, economic development, business engagement, youth education, grants to educators, advocacy for energy issues, community involvement, broadband connectivity and emergency preparedness support. Visit www.pemc.coop for more information.