Siouxland spared in USDA office closures - KTIV News 4 Sioux City IA: News, Weather and Sports

Siouxland spared in USDA office closures


The U.S. Department of Agriculture announced it's closing nearly 260 domestic offices, labs and other facilities across the country.

The closings will affect rural development for farm service agencies.

Secretary of Ag Tom Vilsack outlined the closings as part of the USDA's Blueprint for Stronger Service, driving America's economy by making the government work better and more efficiently through cost cutting.

Even though $150 million will be saved per year, the plan challenges the USDA to strengthen service to rural America without an interruption of quality service.

"We don't want to do that. We want to continue to provide the service. So we're committed to doing that and we're making some tough calls and some tough choices, but that's what people expect and that's what American households are doing every single day," said Tom Vilsack, Agriculture Secretary.

The plan will affect the agency's Washington headquarters and operations in 46 states.

With those closures, Iowa Senator Charles Grassley has some concerns with service.

"Are farmers going to be serviced and is the whole approach fair to the people that are affected?" asked Sen. Charles Grassley, (R) Iowa.

One positive for Siouxland, there are no offices scheduled to close here.

However, there are about 10 offices in Nebraska, Iowa, and South Dakota that are marked for potential closure.

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