Ballots Mailed Out Next Month For FSA Elections

10/17/11 – The Farm Service Agency (FSA) will be mailing out ballots on November 4 for the 2011 FSA county committee elections. County FSA Executive Director Susan Blachowiak says the County Committee makes decisions about the local administration of federal farm programs, like disaster and conservation payments, establishment of allotments and yields, producer appeals and other local agricultural issues. Blachowiak is urging all eligible farmers and ranchers, especially minorities and women, to get involved. To be an eligible voter, farmers and ranchers must participate or cooperate in FSA programs. Eligible voters who do not receive a ballot can obtain one at the USDA Service Center. In Dodge County, producers being elected come from the townships of Fox Lake, Trenton, Chester, Westford, Burnett, Calamus, Beaver Dam and Oak Grove. Agricultural producers in each county submitted candidate names during the nomination period held last summer. This year’s candidates are: Dale Macheel, Laura Helmer and Glen Berndt. The deadline for eligible voters to return ballots to their local FSA office is December 5. Newly elected committee members and alternates take office January 1.

Dale Macheel resides in the town of Randolph. He has enjoyed being the county committee representative for the past 3-years. He has produced corn, soybeans, wheat, alfalfa, peas, sweet corn, and snap beans for over 36-years. Dale and his wife have hosted the Dodge County Dairy Breakfast on their farm. Early in their career, they were selected as Dodge County Farm Bureau’s Outstanding Young Farmer. Dale is a member of Farm Bureau, United Co-op, and was nominated for the board of Landmark Services Co-op. Dale is a UW Madison alumnus, graduating with a BS in Biological Systems Engineering from the College of Agriculture & Life Sciences.

Laura Helmer resides in the town of Fox Lake. Laura and her husband live on a cash grain farm in north western Dodge County. Laura is employed with the State of Wisconsin Department of Corrections located in Waupun. She grew up on a farm in Marquette County where they produced corn, hay and raised a flock of 100 ewes. During Laura’s spare time she enjoys raising calves. Laura is a University of Wisconsin – Stevens Point alumnus.

Glen Berndt resides in the town of Horicon. He has produced cash crop corn, soybeans, and wheat for 11-years and raised beef, hogs, and produced cash grain for 12-years. For 20-years Glen was a co-owner on a dairy farm.

For more information about FSA county committees and FSA programs, visit: http://www.fsa.usda.gov. In Dodge County the FSA office is located at 451 W. North Street, Juneau or can be contacted at 920-386-9999.