The announcement includes support for $9.8m in smart grid technologies and a $30m loan guarantee to Jefferson Energy Cooperative, which serves parts of 11 counties of the state of Georgia.

Under Secretary for Rural Development Dallas Tonsager remarked that the Obama administration and US Department of Agriculture (USDA) continue to support investment by rural cooperatives that will modernize service and improve reliability for rural businesses as well as residential customers.

"Several of these utilities and cooperatives are also receiving funding that will allow them to deploy smart grid technologies in their operation," Tonsager added.

In September, Secretary Vilsack announced that USDA met its goal to finance $250m in smart grid technologies in fiscal year 2012.

Following rural utilities/cooperatives would receive USDA funding: Cullman Electric, Dakota Valley Electric, Jefferson Energy, Mecklenburg Electric, Mora-San Miguel Electric, South Central Arkansas Electric, The Frontier Power, Western Cooperative Electric Association, and Wood County Electric.