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TO:         Superintendents of Schools, Business Officers, and Facilities Managers

FROM:   Susan A. Gendron, Commissioner

DATE:    December 24, 2004

RE:         Qualified Zone Academy Bonds

The Department has recently been informed that the Qualified Zone Academy Bond (QZAB) loan program, administered by the U.S. Department of Agriculture, has been reauthorized for 2004 and 2005.   It is anticipated that Maine will receive $1.8 million in loan capacity through this program for each of those years.

The QZAB loan program provides low cost loans through local lending institutions to school administrative units that meet certain rural and poverty characteristics.   A school administrative district receiving such a loan is required to obtain a 10% matching grant from its community. To be eligible, the funds must be used in a school that has at least 35% Free or Reduced Lunch and must be used for an eligible project.

The QZAB loan application is available on the Department’s website at:    More information on QZAB loans is also available at the U.S. Department of Education website at and search for QZAB.

The Department will receive applications for projects to be funded with QZAB loans.   The deadline for the 2004 and 2005 QZAB loan applications is February 4, 2005.   Districts that have applied for QZAB loans in the past must fill out a new application for each project.

If you have questions about the QZAB application, please contact Jay Readinger at