County Farm Service Agency searches for board candidates

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Farmers and ranchers who don't express interest in sitting on the Farm Service Agency County Committee might get their arms twisted into doing so if there aren't enough candidates for the position and there probably won't be.

According to Program Technician Cheryl Martin, there hasn't been a contested race for the committee in 15 years.

"Usually we have to get on the phone and whoever answers, we twist their arm," Martin said.

The Farm Service Agency is looking for farmers or ranchers to fill a vacant seat on the Local Administration Area 1 (LAA 1). The area covers all Moffat County farms and ranches north of U.S. Highway 40 and east of Colorado Highway 13.

The committee is made up of elected residents from three administration areas who oversee the operations of the Farm Service Agency. They oversee funds given to programs through the Farm Bill, which include production, conservation and wool program grants and disaster payments.

There is one seat open each year. Currently, Regina Kawcak sits in the LAA 1 seat and has given no indication she will run again. Wes Counts and Dawn Nottingham sit in the other two seats.

Anybody who is in the business of producing or agriculture is eligible for to run.

"You have to be an active operator or owner of agricultural land a farm or a ranch," Martin said.

There have to be four candidates for there to be an election. The person with the highest number of votes takes the seat and the three others are alternates.

Usually, four people don't volunteer to be on the ballot.

"We just call people until someone says "yes," Martin said.

Ballots will be mailed to the 382 eligible voters in LAA1 in November. Eligible voters must be agricultural producers.

There are nearly 1,800 eligible voters in Moffat County.

Nomination forms are due to the Farm Services Agency office, 356 Ranney St., by Oct. 30. Votes will be counted in December.

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