Louisiana Farm Service Agency Acting State Executive Director T. Christine Normand announced that the U.S. Department of Agriculture has begun mailing ballots to eligible farmers and ranchers for the 2017 FSA County Committee elections.

Producers must return ballots to their local FSA offices by Dec. 4.

Newly elected committee members will take office Jan. 1.

“County committee members represent the farmers and ranchers in our Louisiana communities,” Normand said. “Producers elected to these committees have always played a vital role in local agricultural decisions. It is a valued partnership that helps us better understand the needs of the farmers and ranchers we serve.”

Normand said producers must participate or cooperate in an FSA program to be eligible to vote in the county committee election. Farmers and ranchers who supervise and conduct the farming operations of an entire farm, but are not of legal voting age, also may be eligible to vote.

For information, visit the FSA website at www.fsa.usda.gov/elections or contact the local USDA Service Center or FSA office.