USDA to Close 259 Offices, Other Facilities
The U.S. Department of Agriculture announced plans to close 259 offices, labs, and other facilities within the department in a cost-cutting measure.
This will affect 46 states, as well as their headquarters in Washington D.C. The agency has not announced which offices are being closed, or which areas will be affected as of yet.
Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack said that many of the offices being closed are sparsely-staffed. “Roughly 131 of the 250 offices are in the Farm Service Area, and these are offices that either currently either don’t have any full time employees at all, or if they do, have no more than 1 or 2 employees at the office.”
Vilsack said some of these employees would be reassigned, but gave no estimates on how many would be laid off.
The USDA estimates that this measure will cut around $150 million from their $145 billion annual budget.