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Nominations under way for farm service committees

June 10, 2013

Farmer candidate nominations are under way for local Farm Service Agency  County Committees.

The nomination period continues through Thursday, Aug. 1, with the election taking place by mail ballot between Nov. 4 and the close of business on Dec. 2.

In Washington County, the election is for Local Administrative Area No. 3, which is the part of the county west of Interstate 81 and south of Md. 68 running southeast from Williamsport and continuing with Alternate U.S. 40 from Boonsboro to the Frederick County, Md. line.

To be eligible to serve on a committee, a person must participate or cooperate in a program administered by FSA, be eligible to vote in a county committee election and live in the local administrative area in which the person is a candidate.

Producers can nominate themselves or others and organizations representing minorities and women and beginning farmers also can nominate candidates.

To become a candidate, an eligible individual must sign the nomination form FSA-669A.

Information about FSA county committee elections in English and Spanish are available online at www.fsa.usda.gov/elections.
  
For the FSA-669A scroll down to the links under Election Materials and click “2013 Nomination Form”; for Fact Sheets, scroll down to the links under “Fact Sheets.”

For more information, call the local office at 301-797-0500, ext. 2.

“I encourage all agricultural producers to participate in the nomination of county committee candidates by the Aug. 1 deadline,” said Colleen Cashell, county executive director of the Washington County Farm Service Agency office.

“We would like as much participation as possible since county committees provide a vital link and a voice for landowners and farmers to have opinions and ideas heard at the U.S. Department of Agriculture.

“With better participation in recent years, we also have seen a trend of increased nominations of minority and women producers that we hope will continue.”   

Committee members make decisions on disaster and conservation programs, emergency programs, commodity price support loan programs and other agricultural issues. Members serve three-year terms. Nationwide, there are about 7,800 farmers and ranchers serving on FSA county committees. Committees consist of three to 11 members who are elected by eligible producers.

FSA will mail ballots to eligible voters beginning Nov. 4. The newly elected committee member and alternates take office Jan. 1, 2014.

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