WASHINGTON – The deadline to return ballots for the 2013
Farm Service Agency County Committee elections is Dec. 2.
“The role and input of our county committee members is more
vital than ever at a time when our country faces important choices regarding the
funding and operation of our government,” said U.S. Department of Agriculture
FSA Administrator Juan Garcia.
“New county committee members provide input and make
important decisions on the local administration of disaster and conservation
programs. With better participation in recent years, we have also seen promising
increases in the number of women and minority candidates, helping to better
represent the richness of American agriculture.”
County committee members are an important component of the
operations of FSA and provide a link between the agricultural community and
Farmers and ranchers elected to county committees help
deliver FSA programs at the local level, applying their knowledge and judgment
to make decisions on commodity price support programs; conservation programs;
incentive indemnity and disaster programs for some commodities; emergency
programs and eligibility. FSA committees operate within official regulations
designed to carry out federal laws.
To be an eligible voter, farmers and ranchers must
participate or cooperate in an FSA program. A person who is not of legal voting
age, but supervises and conducts the farming operations of an entire farm also
may be eligible to vote.
Agricultural producers in each county submitted candidate
nominations during the nomination period, which ended on Aug. 1.
Dec. 2 is the last day for voters to submit ballots in
person to local USDA Service Centers. Ballots returned by mail also must be
postmarked no later than Dec. 2.
Newly elected committee members and their alternates will
take office Jan. 1. Close to 7,700 FSA county committee members serve in the
2,124 FSA offices nationwide.
Each committee consists of three to 11 members who serve
three-year terms. About one-third of county committee seats are up for election
More information on county committees, such as the new 2013
fact sheet and brochures, can be found on the FSA website at