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Trump vows to cut federal bureaucracy

Agribusiness Matters 4-14-17

The other shoe is about to drop in the Trump Administration pledge to reduce the intrusion of government into our lives.

Reduction in the civilian workforce to shrink government’s size and scope.

Every agency is being reviewed and a plan must be submitted by June 30 to begin the process with the first cuts in October.

It’s unlikely President Trump, or any president, can shrink the federal bureaucracy as much as they want. But even modest personnel cuts could impact the ability of agencies to deliver services and the U.S. Department of Agriculture has a lot of them.

American Farm Bureau Executive Director Dale Moore says, “For farmers, ranchers, and rural communities, the land grant institutions, the research that goes on, the nutrition programs, and their delivery in working with the state organizations. We look at the forest service. Taking care of the land the USDA has governance over, fighting wildfires.”

Moore continued by saying. “You have to take into account when you look around the world and the see the importance of trade. The importance of our humanitarian efforts to help feed people around the world.”

President Trump lifted his hiring freeze Wednesday, but then directed agencies to write long-term blueprints to pare staffs, starting a year from this October.

“Farm Bureau is certainly going to be engaged. We are going to be working not only with USDA and secretary Purdue, but we are going to be working with all the other farm and commodity groups, says Moore.”

The president proposed a 21-percent cut to USDA. Budget Director Mick Mulvaney says the new administration’s effort to overhaul the 2-point-1 million-person civilian workforce will be more far-reaching than those of previous White Houses.

Layoffs, buyouts, early retirement offers, and even outsourcing to state or local governments or private companies are all on the table.