CLINTON — Sampson County USDA Farm Service Agency (FSA) Executive Director, S. Kettrell Strickland is reminding farmers and landowners that FSA is hosting an informational meeting regarding the 2016 County Committee Election process on Wednesday, Sept. 7 at 1 p.m. at the Sampson County Cooperative Extension Livestock Arena, 55 Agriculture Place, Clinton.
Producers, including minority, women and new farmers, are encouraged to attend the meeting and participate in the 2016 election. “This meeting will review voter eligibility and how elections are held, and votes tabulated,” said Strickland.
For election purposes, counties are divided into local administrative areas (LAA). Each LAA nominates and elects one producer to serve a three-year term on the FSA County Committee. Each year, an election is held in an LAA where a committee member’s three-year term is expiring. For 2016, an election will be held in LAA III, which includes Westbrook, Newton Grove, Herring, Halls, Piney Grove and North Clinton communities.
“Eligible voters in LAA III will begin receiving their ballots through the mail around the 7th of November,” said Strickland. “Farmers and ranchers in LAA III are urged to participate in this year’s county committee elections,” said CED Strickland. “County Committees are unique to FSA and allow producers to have a voice on federal farm program implementation at the local level.”
To be eligible to serve on an FSA county committee, a person must participate or cooperate in a program administered by FSA, be eligible to vote in a county committee election and reside in the LAA in which the person is a candidate.
Farmers and ranchers may nominate themselves or others. Organizations representing minorities and women also may nominate candidates. 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 www.fsa.usda.gov/elections. Nationwide, there are approximately 7,800 farmers and ranchers serving on FSA county committees. These individuals make decisions on disaster and conservation programs, emergency programs, commodity price support loan programs and other agricultural issues. Committees consist of three to 11 members that are elected by eligible producers.
Persons with disabilities who require accommodations to attend or participate in this meeting should contact Kettrell Strickland at 910-592-4791, ext. 2, or Federal Relay Service at 1-800-877-8339, by Tuesday, September 6th 2016.