"The role and input of our county committee members is more vital
than ever," said 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 also have seen promising increases in the number of women
and minority candidates."
Eligible voters who do not receive
ballots in the coming week can obtain ballots from their local USDA
Service Center. Dec. 3 is the last day for voters to submit ballots
in person to their local center. Ballots returned by mail must also
be postmarked no later than Dec. 3. Newly elected committee members
and their alternates will take office Jan. 1.
To be an eligible voter in a county committee election, a farmer
or rancher 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 Aug. 1.
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While FSA county committees do not approve or deny farm operating
loans, they make decisions on disaster and conservation programs,
emergency programs, commodity price support loan programs, and other
agricultural issues. Members serve three-year terms. Nationwide,
about 7,700 farmers and ranchers are serving on FSA county
committees. Committees consist of three to 11 members elected by
More information on county committees, such as the new 2012 fact
sheet and brochures, is available on the FSA website at
www.fsa.usda.gov/elections or at a local USDA Service Center.
[Text from file received from
Illinois Farm Service Agency]