Farm Progress

County committees are the mechanism by which farmers and ranchers make sure farm programs match local needs.

June 13, 2017

2 Min Read
MAKING DECISIONS: FSA county committees help make decisions on disasters, such as the 2017 wildfires that devastated 650,000 acres in Kansas. The nomination period for people to serve on those committees is now open.

There is an important mechanism in place to help farmers and ranchers feel that federal farm programs are administered in a way that best serves the local needs of any region in America.

That mechanism is local Farm Service Agency county committees, made up of farmers and ranchers elected by producers in their communities to guide the delivery of farm programs at the local level. The nomination period for people to serve on those committees starts on Thursday, June 15.

“County committees allow farmers and ranchers to make important decisions about how federal farm programs are administered locally to best serve their needs,” says Acting FSA Administrator Chris Beyerhelm. “We strongly encourage all eligible producers to visit their local FSA office to find out how to get involved in their county’s election. There’s an increasing need for representation from underserved producers, which includes beginning, women and other minority farmers and ranchers.”

Committee members play a critical role in the day-to-day operations of FSA. Committees consist of three to 11 members and meet once a month or as needed to make important decisions on disaster and conservation programs, emergency programs, commodity price support loan programs, county office employment and other agricultural issues. Members serve three-year terms. Nationwide there are over 7,700 farmers and ranchers serving on FSA county committees.

Farmers and ranchers may nominate themselves or others. Organizations, including those representing beginning, women and minority producers, may also nominate candidates to better serve their communities. To be eligible to serve on an FSA county committee, a person must participate or cooperate in an agency-administered program and reside in the local administrative area where the election is being held.

After the nomination period, candidates will encourage the eligible producers in their local administrative area to vote. FSA will mail election ballots to eligible voters beginning Nov. 6, 2017. Ballots will be due back to the local county office either via mail or in person by Dec. 4, 2017. Newly-elected committee members and alternates will take office on Jan. 1, 2018.

To become a candidate, an eligible individual must sign an FSA-669A nomination form. The form and other information about FSA county committee elections are available at fsa.usda.gov/elections. All nomination forms for the 2017 election must be postmarked or received in the local FSA office by Aug. 1, 2017. Locate your local office at offices.usda.gov and visit to get more information.

Source: USDA

Subscribe to receive top agriculture news
Be informed daily with these free e-newsletters

You May Also Like