Gov. Wolf Announces $2.17 Million in New Investments in Agriculture for Farmers in Five Pennsylvania Counties
April 21, 2021
Governor Tom Wolf announced the approval of $2.17 million in funding to expand agriculture operations for six projects in five Pennsylvania counties. The investments approved today will help farmers acquire buildings, farmland, and construct barns and broiler houses.
“Pennsylvania’s agriculture industry helps our economy thrive and is an important way of life for people across our commonwealth,” said Gov. Wolf. “Today’s approved funding will help our farmers expand their operations, embark on new ones, and provide critical goods and services to buyers in their communities and beyond.”
The approved First Industry Fund projects are as follows:
Halfmoon Creek Farm, LLC, through SEDA-Council of Governments, was approved for a 15-year, $170,000 PIDA loan at a 1 percent reset rate to acquire a 15-acre farm located in Ferguson Township. The property includes a 1,872-square-foot two-story farmhouse and a large equestrian building containing stables and an indoor riding area. The total project cost is $340,000. In October 2019, Halfmoon Creek Farm, LLC entered into an installment sales agreement to acquire the project property for $351,000, and the PIDA project cost of $340,000 includes the eligible outstanding balance of the seller note and closing costs.
Joel and Sarah Knoebel, operating as Cleveland Pork, Inc., through SEDA-Council of Governments, were approved for a 15-year, $400,000 PIDA loan at a 1 percent reset rate to assist in the construction of a 4,800-head hog finishing barn on their farm located in Cleveland Township. The couple currently operates a 4,400-head hog barn on the project premises. The new barn will be in addition to the existing hog barn that has been in operation since 2009. Cleveland Pork, Inc. has recently received a renewable six-year contract from Country View Family Farms for the hog operation. The total project cost is $1,432,700.
Karlin L. & Melissa J. Lynch, through Southern Alleghenies Planning and Development Commission, were approved for a 15-year, $400,000 PIDA loan at a 0.75 percent reset rate to acquire a 302-acre farm located in Bethel Township. The land is currently being leased by the Lynches, resulting in zero transition time and rent savings. In the future, Karlin and Melissa hope to add additional turkey houses on the project premises. The total project cost is $1 million.
Michael and Nancy Nissly, through EDC Finance Corporation, were approved for a 15-year, $400,000 PIDA loan at a 1.75 percent fixed rate to assist with the construction of two 63-foot-by-500-foot broiler houses on their farm located in Manor Township. The broiler houses are contracted with Charles Brothers Inc. for five years per the executed agreement, and Charles Brothers, Inc. will pay for a variety of expenses such as feed, medications, and miscellaneous supplies. The total project cost is $1 million.
Joe and Angela Hess, through EDC Finance Corporation, were approved for a 15-year, $400,000 PIDA loan at a 1 percent reset rate to assist with the purchase of a 53.6-acre crop farm located in East Donegal Township. The property consists of 46 tillable acres and two large buildings. The Hesses plan to plant corn in the spring and foliage in the fall. The crops will be sold to Hess Dairy, and the property will continue to generate rental income from renting out one of the two buildings on the property to a dry wall recycling business. The total project cost is $1,141,700.
Hidden View Farms, through SEDA-Council of Governments, was approved for a 15-year, $400,000 PIDA loan at a 0.75 percent reset rate to assist in the construction of two 42-foot-by-644-foot chicken barns on the project property located in Jackson Township. Hidden View Farms recently obtained a seven-year contract from Bell and Evans for both houses. The total project cost is $1,448,670.
More information about the Commonwealth Financing Authority can be found on the Department of Community and Economic Development (DCED) website.