The City of Ruthven was recently awarded $10,200 from the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) Rural Development Community Facilities Program to purchase and install two outdoor warning sirens. The sirens will make it easier to reach more people faster and will cover a broader area. The new sirens will allow both the Ruthven Fire Department and the Communication Center to trigger the sirens in emergency situations.
Ruthven City Clerk Kay Suhr advised that the siren that is currently in Ruthven is 30 to 40 years old and is no longer meeting the community's needs. There are parts within the siren that are failing and are no longer replaceable.
The project is currently in the bidding process. The city is working with the Ruthven Fire Department who were also awarded a grant from the Palo Alto County Gaming Development Corporation for this project. Suhr, who wrote the application for the USDA grant, says they hope to have the project completed by Dec. 31.
More than $5 million in funding will support 127 projects in 27 states and the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico. The state of Iowa is receiving a total of $175,000 to be distributed to support six projects aimed at improving public safety and enhancing health care facilities.
"Well equipped first responders and quality medical facilities are important in all of Iowa's communities, but particularly in rural areas where resources are scarce," said Iowa Senator Tom Harkin. "In order for Iowa's small towns to remain good places to live and do business, it is important that they have the tools to keep their residents safe. Today's funding is welcome news for these communities."
USDA Rural Development is an equal opportunity leader with a variety of grant and direct and guaranteed loan programs for single and multi-family housing, community facilities, water and sewer development and business and industry programs.
USDA, through its Rural Development mission area, has an active portfolio of more that $10 billion in loans and loan guarantees. These programs are designed to improve the economic stability of rural communities, businesses, residents, farmers and ranchers and improve the quality of life in rural America.