The Upper Shore Regional Council (USRC) announces the USRC Farm Incentive Fund, previously named the USRC Ag Equity Incentive Matching Fund. In partnership with the Maryland Agricultural and Resource-Based Industry Development Corporation (MARBIDCO), USRC developed the incentive fund to bolster agricultural businesses within its regional economy.
“With over 1,400 farms in Cecil, Kent and Queen Anne’s Counties, the regional agricultural economy generates over $428 million annually. Due to seasonal variables, bottom lines are impacted annually and make access to capital vital for new and established agri-businesses,” said Susan O’Neill, Executive Director of the USRC. “We decided to rename the fund to enhance its clarity as we continue to reach our target audience.”
Designed to incentivize loan requests from food and fiber-producing farms in the Upper Shore region, this program will connect farmers with the funds required to meet lender down-payments and improve the credit quality of their applications. The fund will provide a 5% equity contribution towards financing a project funded by a MARBIDCO loan.
Borrowers requesting assistance from one of MARBIDCO’s loan programs may use the USRC funds for equity. To see qualifying MARBIDCO funds and view the application, visit www.USRCMD.org.
About the Upper Shore Regional Council
Since 2003, the Upper Shore Regional Council (USRC) has fostered planning and development in Cecil, Kent, and Queen Anne’s counties. USRC affords federal, state, county, and local governments a regional forum to identify issues and opportunities. USRC plans and implements programs to improve the quality of life in the Upper Shore Region of Maryland.
The Maryland General Assembly established MARBIDCO more than a decade ago to help enhance the sustainability and profitability of the State’s agricultural and resource-based industries. MARBIDCO helps bolster rural economies, supports locally-produced food and fiber products, and preserves working farm and forest land. MARBIDCO is a nimble, quasi-public financial intermediary organization with a mission to serve the commercial farming, forestry, and seafood industries of Maryland exclusively. Young and beginning farmers are a particular focus for MARBIDCO, as is farm operation diversification. In delivering its financing programs, MARBIDCO works cooperatively with commercial banks, Farm Credit Associations, and federal, state, regional, and local government agencies and universities. Since 2007, MARBIDCO has approved 699 financings totaling over $64 million for food and fiber business projects located in all Maryland’s counties – and in the process, it has leveraged more than $157 million in commercial lender financing. For more information about MARBIDCO’s programs, please visit www.marbidco.org.