WASHINGTON – U.S. Senators Amy Klobuchar (D-MN) and Tina Smith (D-MN) announced a $32,300 U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) Rural Development grant to purchase school equipment for the Nicollet Independent School District. Nicollet Public Schools is a K-12 public school district that also owns and operates an Early Childhood center, which has old playground equipment. The federal funding will help replace outdated equipment to ensure children have a safe space to play.

“Kids need up-to-date playground equipment to play safely,” said Klobuchar. “With this federal funding, Nicollet Public Schools will be able to make needed replacements at the Early Childhood center playground so kids can keep having fun.”

“Everyone should have access to outdoor spaces and recreational opportunities,” said Smith. “This investment in Nicollet will replace outdated and aged playground equipment to ensure families and children have a new, safe place to play.”

Senators Klobuchar and Smith are members of the U.S. Senate Committee on Agriculture, Nutrition, and Forestry, which oversees the USDA.

This federal funding was secured through the USDA Rural Development Community Facilities Direct Loan and Grant Program. Program grants can be used by communities across the country to develop essential community facilities in rural areas. An essential community facility is defined as a facility that provides an essential service to the local community in a primarily rural area, such as health care facilities, public safety services, educational services, and more.