Angela K Vos, Executive Director of USDA’s Farm Service Agency (FSA) in Marion County, reminds eligible voters that the county committee elections are in progress. Ballots have been mailed and completed ballots must be returned by mail or delivered to the Marion County FSA office by December 3, 2012.
“By voting producers have a voice in their local community since the county committee members play a huge role in the Agency, especially at the county level,” said Vos. “County committee members make decisions on how federal farm programs will be administered locally,” she said.
Voters in Local Administrative Area #1, representing Red Rock, Summit and Lake Prairie received ballots for this year’s election and will be voting to elect a representative from this area. Candidates on the ballot include: Bradley Rietveld and Linda Verhoef.
If you did not receive a ballot and are eligible to vote, contact the Marion County FSA for a replacement ballot.
County committee members are elected to office by their peers and serve as the representative voice for agriculture producers in the county and are responsible for communicating with USDA to ensure that national programs are adapted to fit local needs. County committees are responsible for making decisions on issues including commodity loans and payments, conservation programs, disaster assistance programs and emergency programs.
Vos encourages minority and female producers to serve as county committee members in the future. It is important that the county committee is comprised of members who reflect the demographics of the local agriculture community.
Farmers and ranchers who participate in FSA programs are eligible to vote. If eligible voters do not receive a ballot by mail, one will be provided by the local USDA Service Center. Ballots returned by mail must be postmarked no later than December 3, 2012. New county committee members will assume their role and related responsibilities on January 1, 2013.
For more information on the County Committee election, please contact the Marion County FSA office at 641-842-3168 or go on-line at www.fsa.usda.gov.