Co-Line Welding, Inc. recently learned it has been awarded a $2 million zero-interest loan by the United States Department of Agriculture. Only six Iowa businesses/organizations were selected to receive a REDLG loan or grant from the USDA – and Co-Line was awarded the highest amount of the six.
The loan will aid Co-Line’s planned three-year, $4,985,000 expansion at its location five miles south of Sully. The project includes the addition of 120,000 square feet to the current south manufacturing facility, a training facility, manufacturing equipment, and technology upgrades.
“This is the fourth and largest rural economic development loan in Co-Line’s 37-year history,” said Dale Brand, co-owner of Co-Line. “Facility and equipment expansions are a visible and exciting part of Co-Line’s pattern of growth. I am honored by the confidence demonstrated to Co-Line by Bruce Nuzum from the Iowa Area Development Group, the board of directors from both Pella Cooperative Electric and Central Iowa Power Cooperative, and the USDA. I thank you all.”
Money for the loan comes from the USDA’s Rural Economic Development Loan and Grant (REDLG) programs, which provide funding to rural projects through local utility organizations.
Under the REDLoan program, USDA provides zero-interest loans to local utilities, which they, in turn, pass through to local businesses (ultimate recipients) for projects that will create and retain employment in rural areas. In Co-Line’s case, the loan will come through Central Iowa Power Cooperative.
The five other Iowa recipients were Burgess Health Center ($250,000 grant), Orange City Area Health Foundation ($1,760,000 loan), Minburn Telephone Company ($300,000 grant), Hawarden Community Hospital ($300,000 grant), and City of Pocahontas – elementary school ($300,000 grant).
Co-Line’s project is one of 92 in the U.S. worth a total of $18.1 million that were recently awarded loans or grants to help support the start-up or expansion of rural small businesses.
“I am proud of the work USDA has done to help small businesses grow in rural America because they are the engine that creates jobs,” said Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack upon announcing the loans and grants on July 29. “These funds will allow small and emerging businesses and the organizations that support them to get the financing they need to strengthen their operations, create jobs, and expand economic opportunities. Thanks to the 2014 Farm Bill, we can continue this work in a more streamlined and efficient way to benefit small businesses and the American taxpayer.”
Co-Line Welding, Inc., owned by Dale, Tana, Eric, and Faye Brand, is a metal fabrication and manufacturing business located in rural Lynnville. Opening its doors in 1979, Co-Line began as a welding and repair shop serving area farmers. Co-Line survived the farm crisis of the 1980s, rapid growth demands of the 1990s, tornado of 2007, and the economic downturn in 2008. With each test of time, Co-Line has become stronger in its journey to being a world-class manufacturer in the United States of America.
Co-Line’s expansion project is scheduled to be complete by mid-2018.