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The Iowa Department of Transportation is accepting applications for the Rail Revolving Loan and Grant Program (RRLG), which provides financial assistance for projects that improve rail facilities and systems in the state. Applications are due June 26.The program is funded through appropriations from the state Legislature and repayments from past loans. Railroads, industries, local governments and economic development agencies are eligible to apply for RRLG grants and loans.The program has three funding categories: targeted job creation, rail network improvement, and rail port planning and development. For the first time, the program will offer grants for rail port planning and development studies, Iowa DOT officials said in an online announcement.Both grants and loans are available for rail projects that provide immediate and direct job opportunities, they said. RRLG grant requests require a 50 percent local contribution and loan requests require a 20 percent local match.For rail projects that support existing rail lines and service, but don't create jobs, only loans are available. RRLG loans are offered at 0 percent interest for a 10-year term and require a 20 percent local contribution.Late last year, the Iowa Transportation Commission approved more than $3 million in RRLG funding for six rail infrastructure and rail development-related projects.
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