Twenty-one independent telecommunication companies (ITCs) have been awarded the 2018 Ripple Effect IMPACT Award by Aureon and Iowa Area Development Group. Minburn Communications, which serves Minburn, Woodward, Perry and rural Dallas County, was one of those companies honored, operating its revolving loan fund (RLF) since 2015 which is capitalized at $360,000.

All of the companies are honored for operating RLFs that provide critical financing for business and community development in rural Iowa.

The 21 ITCs operate 22 funds around the state which in total are capitalized at over $9.6 million. The funds were all established with initial capitalization from either the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) and/or Aureon. The RLFs were created from 1990 through 2017 and have provided loan assistance for nearly 250 development projects.

“The strategic pursuit of economic development by all of these companies through their RLFs has served communities and businesses across Iowa very well and resulted in critical growth in their service territories in rural Iowa,” said Sue Cosner, Vice President of Community Initiatives at the Iowa Area Development Group.

Minburn Communication's $360,000 is comprised of a $30,000 grant from Ripple Effect, a $30,000 match from Minburn Communications and a $300,000 USDA grant, which allowed the telco to create the RLF and loan the grant proceeds to the city of Perry for 10 years at zero percent interest.

The telco's loan enabled the city of Perry to develop a sally port facility, a secure loading/unloading entrance to the city's police department for the delivery of detainees and a new garage in which the city can store its police vehicles.

“This USDA grant allowed our company to create a much-needed revolving loan fund for the region and to assist the city of Perry with construction of their law enforcement building. It's a win-win for all of us,” said Minburn Communications' General Manager/CEO Deb Lucht. “We also appreciate the support of the Ripple Effect program. For the second year in a row, we are thrilled to receive the IMPACT Award in recognition for our economic development efforts.”

Cosner added, “We are honored to recognize Minburn Communications and the other 20 companies with the 2018 Ripple Effect IMPACT Award. Without question, their commitment and investment are strengthening the communities and economy of Iowa.”

The Ripple Effect IMPACT award is awarded annually and recognizes economic development leadership, investment in and contribution to communities. The award is sponsored by Aureon and Iowa Area Development Group who respectively fund and manage the Ripple Effect program which assists ITCs in attracting businesses to their territories, in turn creating jobs, spurring economic growth and adding vitality to their communities.