Ag News

USDA to reopen FSA offices for additional services

The USDA will reopen all Farm Service Agency (FSA) offices to provide additional administrative services to farmers and ranchers during the lapse in federal funding. Certain FSA offices have been providing limited services for existing loans and tax documents since Jan. 17.  Beginning Jan. 24 all FSA offices will open and offer a longer list of transactions they will accommodate.   

The USDA announced the deadline to apply for the Market Facilitation Program, which aids farmers harmed by retaliatory tariffs, has been extended to Feb. 14.  The original deadline had been Jan 15. Other program deadlines may be modified and will be announced as they are addressed.

The USDA has temporarily recalled all of the more than 9,700 FSA employees to keep offices open from 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. weekdays beginning Jan. 24.  President Donald Trump has signed legislation that guarantees employees will receive all backpay missed during the lapse in funding.

For the first two full weeks under this operating plan (Jan. 28 through Feb. 1 and Feb. 4 through Feb. 8), FSA offices will be open Mondays through Fridays. After that, offices will be open three days a week, on Tuesdays, Wednesdays, and Thursdays, if needed to provide the additional administrative services.

Agricultural producers who have business with the agency can contact their FSA service center to make an appointment.