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US: Employees at USDA recalled to help with farm loans & taxes

On Thursday, the US Department of Agriculture reopened about 980 Farm Service Agency (FSA) offices for three days starting to help process farm loans and tax documents during the partial federal government shutdown.

About 2,500 FSA employees who have been furloughed by the partial shutdown that began on Dec. 22 have been called back to work without pay, the department said in a statement. It said the offices would be open Thursday, Friday and Tuesday before closing again.

“Until Congress sends President Trump an appropriations bill in the form that he will sign, we are doing our best to minimize the impact of the partial federal funding lapse on America’s agricultural producers,” U.S. Agriculture Secretary Sonny Perdue said in a statement. “We are bringing back part of our FSA team to help producers with existing farm loans.”

According to, Perdue said 983 of the agency’s 2,124 offices would be open. At least one office will be open in each state, as well as in Puerto Rico and the Virgin Islands.

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