C. Jean Hazlegrove
The 2017 Farm Service Agency County Committee Elections began on Nov. 6, when ballots were mailed to eligible voters. The deadline to return the ballots to local FSA offices is Dec. 4, 2017.
County committee members are an essential component of the operations of FSA and provide a link between the agricultural community and USDA. Farmers and ranchers elected to county committees help deliver FSA programs at the local level, applying their knowledge and judgment to make decisions on commodity price support programs; conservation programs; incentive indemnity and disaster programs for some commodities; emergency programs and eligibility. FSA committees operate within official regulations designed to carry out federal laws.
To be an eligible voter, farmers and ranchers 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 may also be eligible to vote.
Eligible voters in local administrative area 3 and 4, who do not receive a ballot can obtain one from their local USDA Service Center. Dec. 4, 2017, is the last day for voters to submit ballots in person to local USDA Service Centers. Ballots returned by mail must also be postmarked no later than Dec. 4. Newly elected committee members will take office Jan. 1, 2018.
The candidates in this year’s election are (listed in alphabetical order):
Ann G. Harrell is nominated in LAA 3, Craig County, to serve as a committee member. Harrell resides in the Upper Craig Creek area and has produced beef cattle, hay, pasture, and miniature donkeys for 50+ years. She is an active member of the Craig Cooperative Extension Advisory Committee; Catawba Valley Farmers Market and serves as the manager; Craig County Tourism Commission and serves as chairman; Botetourt/Craig Roanoke FSA County Committee and serves as the advisor; and member of the Craig County Farm Bureau and the Botetourt Regional Cattlemen’s Association.
John A. Hunter is nominated in LAA 3, Craig County, to serve as a committee member. Hunter resides in the Sinking Creek area and has produced beef cattle including Hereford/Angus crossbreeds, hay and pasture for 40+ years. He is an active member of the Botetourt Regional Cattlemen’s Association and the Craig County Farm Bureau and serves as a member of the board of directors for each.
J. David Poage is nominated in LAA 4, Roanoke County, to serve as a committee member. Poage resides in the Poages Mill area and has produced dairy cattle, beef cattle, hay and pasture for 40+ years.
The Botetourt/Craig/Roanoke FSA County Committee urges eligible voters to please VOTE for the candidate of their choice.
More information on county committees, such as the new 2017 fact sheet, can be found on the FSA website at www.fsa.usda.gov/elections or at a local USDA Service Center.