GENERIC: Solar panel

A Gratiot County man was awarded at $20,000 grant Tuesday from the U.S. Department of Agriculture to purchase a solar system for his swine operation.

The grant is one of two awards in Michigan, and 58 nationwide announced by Acting Assistant to the Secretary for Rural Development, Joel Braxley.

Funding will help Todd Haynes save $12,771 per year on energy costs at his swine-finishing operation.

“Lowering energy costs helps businesses improve their bottom line and create jobs,” said Baxley. “Under the leadership of President Trump and Agriculture Secretary Purdue, USDA is committed to increasing economic development in rural communities across the country.”

Jason Allen is the state director of Rural Development and said the grants are another way to bolster rural communities.

“These grants help make rural businesses more efficient and competitive,” he said.

A Washtenaw County company was also awarded nearly $16,000 in grant funds to install LED lighting.

USDA said more announcements will be made in the coming weeks.

Copyright 2019 WNEM (Meredith Corporation). All rights reserved.

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