South Dakota banks awarded grants

South Dakota banks awarded grants For the third consecutive year, South Dakota banks are the recipients of Bank Enterprise Awards (BEA) from the US Department of Treasury Community Development Financial Institutions (CDFI) Fund.

Dacotah Bank, Community First National Bank and Cortrust Bank were notified that their investments in the South Dakota Rural Enterprise, Inc. (SDREI) Capital Investment Fund have earned over $75,000 in BEA grants. The grants support the capital building efforts of SDREI in its work with revolving loan funds and economic development corporations throughout South Dakota.

"Dacotah Banks, Inc. has been a partner in the SDREI program since its inception," said Richard Holland, vice president of Dacotah Banks. "SDREI is a leader in community development and our BEA grant is another excellent opportunity for us to assist in partnering with this organization to meet the demand for development projects."

Banks, utilities, heath care and other corporations have interested over $5 million to date in the SDREI Capital Investment Fund. Proceeds from the Capital Investment Fund are loaned to revolving loan funds and economic development corporations (CDFIs) to leverage additional money, especially federal programs that require local match.

SDREI funds are more flexible than traditional CDFI funding sources, increasing the capacity of the loan funds to meet the demands of their service areas. Proceeds from the SDREI loan become part of the CDFI capital pool and are not specific to any project.

"By enabling banks to make a single investment to benefit the whole state, SDREI creates dynamic efficiencies in rural development," said Jack Hopkins, executive vice president of Cortrust Bank. "The BEA grants are a vital part of the partnership which enables SDREI, statewide communities and the Community Development Financial Institutions to energize entrepreneurs and create new market strategies that strengthen families, businesses and South Dakota."

The BEA Program recognizes the key role played by traditional financial institutions in community development lending and investing. It provides incentives for these regulated banks to invest in CDFIs and to increase their financial services, lending and investments in distressed communities. The BEA Program supports the community investment efforts of these financial institutions.

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