As the number of COVID-19 cases has risen significantly across the United States and in Ohio over the last several weeks, the U.S. Department of Agriculture has made the decision to adjust its operating status in USDA Service Centers that are experiencing elevated rates of coronavirus community spread.
This decision is based on the latest data to protect USDA employees and customers from rising COVID cases both in the community and in the agency’s workforce.
The status of FSA Service Centers across Ohio will be different depending on local, county conditions.
- All service center visitors wishing to conduct business should call ahead to confirm their FSA office is able to accept in-person appointments and schedule their appointment before visiting as no walk-in appointments are allowed.
- Service centers that are open for in-person appointments will pre-screen visitors based on health concerns or recent travel, and visitors must adhere to social distancing guidelines. Customers who choose this option for service are required to wear a face covering (as are employees) during their appointment and are asked to help maintain appropriate social distancing.
- USDA program delivery staff will continue to be in the office, and they will be working with producers in the office, by phone, email and using online tools.
County-level information on service center status will be updated regularly on the Service Center Status Dashboard.
These changes come as a few important deadlines are quickly approaching. Producers who have business with FSA need to contact their office ASAP to finish up applications and business prior to these deadlines.
Dec. 11 – Election period deadline for 2021 Dairy Margin Coverage (DMC) Program.
Dec. 11 – Coronavirus Food Assistance Program 2 (CFAP 2) application deadline.
Dec. 15 – Deadline to report the 2021 Fall Seeded Crops for fall barley, fall wheat and all other fall-seeded small grains.
Also, producers can now make elections and enroll in the Agriculture Risk Coverage (ARC) and Price Loss Coverage (PLC) programs for the 2021 crop year. Sign-up for the 2021 crop year opened Tuesday, Oct. 13.
USDA will continually review data to determine the status of service centers and receiving visitors in impacted counties.