New Orleans, LA., February 18, 2013 — The National Rural Electric Cooperative Association today honored Federated Rural Electric (Jackson, Minn.) with the Association’s Community Service Award for Community Investment.
Federated REA helped AGCO Corporation, a worldwide manufacturer and distributor of agricultural equipment,, secure a $740,000 U.S. Department of Agriculture Rural Development loan to expand its Minnesota facility. The expansion allowed AGCO to bring its High Horsepower assembly line back from France and build a visitor’s center. The project results in over 200 new jobs in addition to retained jobs.
The AGCO project caps a more than 20-year old economic development effort by the co-op to diversify the local economy, which had relied on agriculture alone. Increased school enrollment, increased demand for housing and caterers, as well as the arrival of an employment agency are a few of the indicators proving the success of Federated’s initiative.
AGCO, which is not a member of the cooperative, will be expanding its workforce from 850 to nearly 1,100 full time employees
“Federated’s outstanding community investment project has not only brought jobs to the co-op’s rural Minnesota community, it has helped improved the quality of life,” said NRECA CEO Glenn English.
Since 1990, Federated has provided more than $3.6 million in loan funds and economic development assistance, helping the regional economy by retaining 230 jobs and add 448 jobs.
Federated is a Touchstone Energy Cooperative serving 5,000 members in Jackson and Martin Counties in Minnesota.
The National Rural Electric Cooperative Association is the national service organization that represents the nation’s more than 900 private, not-for-profit, consumer-owned electric cooperatives, which provide service to 42 million people in 47 states.
Nearly 6,000 representatives from cooperative electric utilities across the nation are attending the NRECA Annual Meeting February 18 -21, during which they will set NRECA’s legislative and organizational agenda for 2013. In addition to considering and acting upon policy resolutions, delegates receive reports from NRECA officials, hear addresses by key public figures and business experts, and attend educational forums on major issues affecting electric cooperatives and their consumer owners.