- Associated Press - Thursday, July 24, 2014

FRANKFORT, Ky. (AP) - A north-central Kentucky electric cooperative has received a $30 million loan guarantee from the U.S. Department of Agriculture.

Gov. Steve Beshear’s office says Owen Electric Cooperative is one of eight rural electric cooperatives to receive such funding.

Beshear says the loan guarantee will help Owen Electric build or improve 228 miles of line and make other system improvements.

His office says more than $3.4 million of the loan will be used for smart grid projects. That will allow the cooperative to better manage and improve operational efficiencies, especially during peak demand time.

Owen Electric Cooperative serves 57,710 customers.

Nationally, the USDA is investing $263.3 million in eight projects to improve the reliability of rural electric systems in eight states.

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