Sunday, June 26, 2011

Kudos and Brickbats FSA County Offices: Strongly Recommended

Mr. Blankenship, a wheat grower from Washington, testified before the Senate Ag committee last week.  Excerpts from his testimony
"In my case, FSA is the easiest local office to deal with. FSA personnel are better trained
than others and more familiar with the actual impacts of changes to program eligibility, payment
limits, etc."

"All in all, the partners in Blankenship Brothers probably make 10 separate visits of several hours to our FSA office per year, minimum, for sign-ups, certification of acreages, CRP status checks, SURE eligibility questions and returning paperwork once proper signatures are collected."

"This GPS-based data management system meshes very well with the GPS-based mapping
recently adopted by my FSA office"  (But otherwise interaction is all paper, with FSA dataloading.)

"The differences between administrative perspectives of offices have caused
some producers to go so far as to buy a small parcel of land in a neighboring county in order to
transfer all of their acres to that county’s FSA office."
I strongly recommend it.  NASCOE will be pleased with it, as he leans towards FSA administering programs.  What he may not fully appreciate are the limitations on making programs operate the same way.

It's good to learn that the effort people like Kevin Wickey (NRCS) and Carol Ernst (FSA) (among many others) put into GIS so many years ago has finally paid off, at least for one operator in one county office.

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