The U.S. Agriculture Department has kept tabs for decades on a wide range of agricultural industries that generate billions of dollars for the U.S. economy. But that’s about to change, as the agency eliminates some reports and reduces the frequency of others to save millions of dollars in tight budget times.
A spokeswoman for the USDA division that produces the reports said it didn’t want to cut them but it had to do something to save money. Eliminating or reducing the frequency of 14 crop and livestock reports will save the National Agricultural Statistics Service about $10 million, Sue duPont said. NASS’s $156 million budget was cut in the federal fiscal year that ended Sept. 30 and more reductions are expected this year as Congress and the White House aim to trim federal spending.
The agency based its choices on the reports’ impact on markets and use by other programs that provide assistance to farmers, along with the availability of information from other sources, DuPont said.
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