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Electronic Code of Federal Regulations

e-CFR data is current as of February 25, 2020

Title 7Subtitle A → Part 7


Title 7: Agriculture


PART 7—SELECTION AND FUNCTIONS OF FARM SERVICE AGENCY STATE AND COUNTY COMMITTEES


Contents
§7.1   Administration.
§7.2   General.
§7.3   Definitions.
§7.4   Selection of committee members.
§7.5   Eligible voters.
§7.6   Establishment of local administrative areas.
§7.7   Calling of elections.
§7.8   Nominations for county committee.
§7.9   Slate of candidates.
§7.10   Conduct of county committee elections.
§7.11   Election of county committee members.
§7.12   Composition of a county committee.
§7.13   Tie votes.
§7.14   Vacancies.
§7.15   Challenges and appeals.
§7.16   Report of election.
§7.17   Remedial measures.
§7.18   Eligibility requirements of county committee members.
§7.19   Eligibility requirements of all other personnel.
§7.20   Prohibition on dual office.
§7.21   Terms of office of county committee members.
§7.22   State committee duties.
§7.23   County committee duties.
§7.24   Chairperson of the county committee duties.
§7.25   County executive director duties.
§7.26   Private business activity and conflicts of interest.
§7.27   Political activity.
§7.28   Removal from office or employment for cause.
§7.29   Delegation of authority to Deputy Administrator.
§7.30   Custody and use of books, records, and documents.
§7.31   Administrative operations.
§7.34   Retention of authority.

Authority: 7 U.S.C. 2279-1, 16 U.S.C. 590d and 590h.

Source: 77 FR 33070, June 5, 2012, unless otherwise noted.

§7.1   Administration.

(a) The regulations in this part apply to the election and functions of the Farm Service Agency (FSA) county committees and the functions of FSA State committees (“county committees” and “State committees,” respectively). State and county committees will be under the general supervision of the FSA Administrator.

(b) State and county committees, and representatives and employees of those committees, do not have authority to modify or waive any of the provisions of this part.

(c) State committees will take any actions required by these regulations that have not been taken by a county committee. State committees will also:

(1) Correct, or require a county committee to correct, any action taken by such county committee that is not in accordance with this part, or

(2) Require a county committee to withhold taking any action that is not in accordance with this part.

(d) No provision or delegation to a State or county committee will preclude the FSA Administrator, or designee, from determining any question arising under this part, or from reversing or modifying any determination made by a State or county committee.

(e) These regulations will be administered in accordance with the Uniform Guidelines for Conducting FSA County Committee Elections.

(f) Unless specifically provided in this part, the Deputy Administrator, Field Operations, FSA (Deputy Administrator), is authorized to issue the official instructions and procedures referred to in this part to implement the provisions of this part.

(g) This part applies to the United States, its territories, and Puerto Rico.

§7.2   General.

State and county committees will, as directed by the Secretary, or a designee of the Secretary, carry out the programs and functions of the Secretary.

§7.3   Definitions.

The following definitions apply to this part. The definitions in §718.2 of this title also apply to this part, except where they conflict with the definitions in this section.

Cooperate means to enroll a farming operation or agricultural property with a county office.

Deputy Administrator means Deputy Administrator for Field Operations, Farm Service Agency, U.S. Department of Agriculture or the designee.

Local administrative area means an elective area for FSA committees in a single county or multi-county jurisdiction.

Participate means to receive assistance, services, or benefits directly from the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA), or from USDA indirectly through another governmental agency.

Socially disadvantaged farmer or rancher is an individual or entity who is a member of a group whose members have been subject to racial, ethnic, or gender prejudice because of their identity as members of a group without regard to their individual qualities. These groups consist of: American Indians or Alaskan Natives, Asians, Blacks or African Americans, Native Hawaiians or other Pacific Islanders, Hispanics, and women.

State committee means the FSA State committee.

Uniform Guidelines means the Uniform Guidelines for Conducting Farm Service Agency County Committee Elections, which are available in FSA Handbook 15-AO.

§7.4   Selection of committee members.

(a) State committee members will be selected by the Secretary and will serve at the pleasure of the Secretary.

(b) County committee members will be elected as specified in §7.11 of this part or appointed as specified in §7.17 of this part.

§7.5   Eligible voters.

(a) Persons must meet the requirements of paragraphs (b) or (c) of this section to be eligible to vote in direct elections of county committee members.

(b) Farmers and ranchers who are of legal voting age in the State in which their farms or ranches are located, regardless of race, color, national origin, gender, religion, age, disability, political beliefs, sexual orientation, and marital or family status, and any farmers or ranchers not of legal voting age who are in charge of the supervision and conduct of the farming operations on an entire farm, are eligible to vote for direct election of county committee members, if they:

(1) Participated in a program administered within a county, or area under the jurisdiction of the county committee, within 1 year of the date of the election; or

(2) Not later than the final date to return ballots, cooperate as evidenced in county office records.

(c) In any State having a community property law, the spouse of a person who is eligible to vote in accordance with paragraph (b) of this section is also eligible to vote.

(d) If an eligible voter is a legal entity, the eligible voter's vote may be cast by a duly authorized representative of such entity, as determined by the Deputy Administrator, Field Operations, FSA.

(e) Each county office will maintain a list of eligible voters for each local administrative area within the county. A county office must disclose a list containing the names of eligible voters to the public. A county office must disclose a list containing the names and addresses of eligible voters to a candidate for a county committee position at the request of the candidate.

(f) Farmers and ranchers who are not on the list of eligible voters who believe that they meet eligibility requirements may file a written challenge with the county committee and may appeal county committee voting ineligibility determinations to the State committee.

(g) Each eligible voter will be entitled to only one ballot in any election held in any one local administrative area. If the eligible voter has an interest in land located in more than one local administrative area in a single county, such voter will not be entitled to vote in more than one local administrative area in that county. There will be no voting by proxy.

§7.6   Establishment of local administrative areas.

(a) The Secretary, or the Secretary's designee, may designate local administrative areas within a county or a larger area under the jurisdiction of a county committee.

(1) There will be a minimum of three local administrative areas in each county. In counties that have been combined or consolidated into a multiple county office, there will be 3 to 11 local administrative areas. In single-county offices, there will be three to five local administrative areas. With respect to Alaska and Puerto Rico, the county will be the area so designated by the State committees. In Louisiana, the term “county” applies to parishes.

(2) Each local administrative area will have not more than one elected county committee member.

(3) The boundaries of the local administrative areas will be determined by the State committee after considering recommendations by the county committee in which the local administrative areas are located.

(4) The county committee must give public notice of the local administrative area boundaries in advance of the election and nomination processes.

(b) [Reserved]

§7.7   Calling of elections.

(a) The Secretary will establish a county committee in each county or area under the jurisdiction of a multiple county office.

(b) Each election of county committee members must be held on a date, or within a specified period of time, determined by the Deputy Administrator. Each such election must be held in accordance with instructions issued by the Deputy Administrator, and the instructions must be available for public examination in each county office.

(c) If the number of eligible voters voting in any election of county committee members is so small that the State committee determines that the result of that election does not represent the views of a substantial number of eligible voters, the State committee may declare the election void and call a new election. If it is determined by the State committee that the election for any position on a county committee has not been held substantially in accordance with official instructions, the State committee will declare such election void and call a new election.

§7.8   Nominations for county committee.

(a) Nominations to the county committee will be publicly solicited with a closing date for nominations not less than 90 days prior to the election date.

(b) Each solicitation for nomination will include the nondiscrimination statement used by the Secretary.

(c) To be eligible for nomination for election in a single county jurisdiction in the local administrative area conducting the election, a person must be a farmer or rancher residing within that local administrative area under the jurisdiction of the county committee. In a multiple county jurisdiction, or in the case where an local administrative area or county boundary runs through a farm, a person will only be eligible for nomination in the jurisdiction and local administrative area in which the person's records are administered.

(d) To be eligible, nominees must be farmers or ranchers who:

(1) Participated in a program administered within an area under the jurisdiction of the county committee; or

(2) At the time of the deadline to submit nominations, cooperate as evidenced in county office records.

(e) Nominations of eligible farmers and ranchers will be solicited and accepted from organizations representing the interests of socially disadvantaged farmers and ranchers.

(f) Eligible farmers and ranchers may nominate themselves or other farmers and ranchers who meet the nomination criteria in paragraph (d) of this section, and who certify their willingness to serve on the county committee.

(g) If elected, nominees must meet all the eligibility requirements in §7.18 to serve as county committee members.

§7.9   Slate of candidates.

(a) Except as provided in paragraph (b) of this section, a slate of candidates will consist of one or more eligible farmers and ranchers nominated through public solicitation of nominees as specified in §7.8.

(b) If no nominations are received by the closing date for nominations, the county committee must develop a slate of candidates in accordance with the Uniform Guidelines.

(c) A slate developed by the county committee must include at least one individual representing the interests of socially disadvantaged farmers and ranchers.

(d) Candidates must certify their willingness to serve on the county committee if elected as a member or alternate.

(e) The county committee must accept write-in candidates on ballots.

(f) Write-in candidates, if elected as a member or an alternate, must meet the eligibility requirements of §7.18 and must certify their willingness to serve on the county committee before they will be certified as a member or alternate.

§7.10   Conduct of county committee elections.

(a) The county committee serving at the time of the election will be responsible for the conduct of the county committee election in accordance with the Uniform Guidelines and with any instructions issued by the Deputy Administrator.

(b) County committee elections must not be associated with, or held in conjunction with, any other election or referendum conducted for any other purpose.

(c) The county committee must give advance public notice at least 30 calendar days prior to the election date of how, when, and where eligible voters may vote.

(d) The county committee must provide at least 10 calendar days of public notice of the date, time, and place at which election ballots will be opened and counted.

(e) The county committee must provide at least 10 calendar days of public notice that any person may observe the opening and counting of the election ballots.

(f) The county executive director must notify all nominees of the outcome of the election within 5 calendar days of the election date. The notification must be in writing.

§7.11   Election of county committee members.

(a) Where there are three local administrative areas as specified in §7.6, there will be an election of a county committee member and, if available, any alternates, for a term of not more than 3 years, or until such person's successor is elected and qualified, in only one of the local administrative areas so that the term of office of one county committee member and any alternates within one of the local administrative areas will expire each year.

(b) Where there are more than three local administrative areas as specified in §7.6, there will be an election in at least one of the local administrative areas each year, such that the term of office of the county committee member(s) and any alternates within at least one-third of the local administrative areas will expire each year.

(c) Every 3 years, the eligible voters in a local administrative area will elect a county committee member and may elect first and second alternates, as available, to serve. The alternates will serve, in the order of the number of votes received, as acting members of the county committee, in case of the temporary absence of a member, or to become a member of the county committee in that same order elected in case of the resignation, disqualification, removal, or death of a member. In other words, the candidate receiving the most votes will be elected as the committee member, and the candidates receiving the second and third most votes, if there are multiple candidates, will be elected as first and second alternates, respectively.

(d) An alternate serving as an acting member of the county committee will have the same duties, responsibilities, and authority as a regular member of such committee. In the event an alternate fills a permanent vacancy on the county committee, such person will assume the remainder of the unexpired term of the county committee member who was replaced.

(e) The election must be conducted in all counties by mail or other distribution of ballots in accordance with the Uniform Guidelines, except that the Deputy Administrator may authorize use of the meeting or polling place method in any county where such exception is deemed justified.

(f) Elections will be by secret ballot with each eligible voter allowed to cast one vote and having the option of writing in the name of a candidate.

(g) Failure to elect alternates at the regular election will not invalidate such election or require a special election to elect alternates.

§7.12   Composition of a county committee.

(a) A committee established under this part will consist of not fewer than 3 nor more than 11 elected members.

(b) Committee members must be fairly representative of the farmers and ranchers within their respective LAA from which they are elected.

(c) The county committee must select a secretary who must be the county executive director or other employee of the county committee. The secretary cannot be a county committee member.

(d) The county committee must select a chairperson and vice-chairperson.

§7.13   Tie votes.

Tie votes in county committee elections will be settled by lot in a manner that is open to the public.

§7.14   Vacancies.

(a) In case of a vacancy in the office of chairperson of a county committee, the respective vice chairperson will become chairperson. In case of a vacancy in the office of vice chairperson of a three member committee, the respective third member will become vice chairperson. In case of a vacancy in the office of a member, a respective first alternate, if available, will become a member. In case of a vacancy in the office of vice chairperson of a four to five member county committee, the first alternate, if available, for the LAA of the vice chairperson will become a member and the county committee will conduct an organizational meeting to select a vice chairperson; and in case of a vacancy in the office of the first alternate, a respective second alternate, if available, will become the first alternate. When unanimously recommended by the members of the county committee, as constituted under this paragraph, and approved by the State committee, the offices of chairperson and vice chairperson of the county committee may be filled by any county committee member without regard to the order of succession specified in this paragraph.

(b) In the event that a vacancy, other than one caused by temporary absence, occurs in the membership of the county committee and no alternate is available to fill the vacancy, a special election may be held to fill such vacancies as exist in the membership.

(c) In the event that a vacancy, other than one caused by temporary absence, occurs in the membership of the county committee and no alternate is available to fill the vacancy, the State committee may designate a person to serve out the balance of the term of the vacant position on the county committee.

§7.15   Challenges and appeals.

(a) Challenges and appeals by nominees regarding voter eligibility or the results of a county committee election must be handled in accordance with the Uniform Guidelines.

(b) Any nominee has the right to challenge an election in writing, in person, or both within 15 calendar days after the results of the election are posted.

(c) Challenges to the election must be made to the county committee, which will provide a decision on the challenge to the appellant within 7 calendar days of the receipt of the challenge.

(d) The county committee's decision may be appealed to the State Committee within 15 calendar days of receipt of the notice of the decision if the appellant desires.

(e) In the event that an election is nullified as a result of a challenge or appeal, or an error in the election process, a special election must be conducted by the county office and closely monitored by the FSA State office.

§7.16   Report of election.

(a) The county committee must file an election report with the Secretary through the Deputy Administrator's office not later than 20 days after the date an election is held.

(b) The election report must include:

(1) The number of eligible voters in the local administrative area;

(2) The number of ballots cast in the election by eligible voters;

(3) The percentage of eligible voters that cast ballots;

(4) The number of ballots disqualified in the election;

(5) The percentage of ballots disqualified;

(6) The number of nominees for each seat up for election;

(7) The race, ethnicity, and gender of each nominee, as provided by the voluntary self identification of each nominee; and

(8) The final election results, including the number of ballots received by each nominee.

§7.17   Remedial measures.

(a) FSA will consider additional efforts to achieve the objective that county committees are fairly representative of farmers and ranchers within areas covered by the committees. Such efforts may include, but are not limited to, compliance reviews of selected counties, further centralization of the election process, and the appointment of socially disadvantaged farmers and ranchers to particular committees in accordance with a notice published in the Federal Register issued by the Secretary authorizing such appointments.

(b) The Secretary may ensure inclusion of socially disadvantaged farmers and ranchers by appointment of 1 additional voting member to a county committee when a significant population of socially disadvantaged farmers and ranchers exist in the committee jurisdiction and no member is elected from that socially disadvantaged population. The appointment of the socially disadvantaged voting member will be in accordance with standards and qualifications furnished by the State committee.

§7.18   Eligibility requirements of county committee members.

(a) To be eligible to hold office as a county committee member or an alternate to any county office, a person must meet the conditions specified in this section.

(b) Such person must:

(1) Meet the eligibility for nomination criteria specified in §7.8;

(2) Reside in the local administrative area in which the election is held, in cases where a State line, a county line, or a local administrative area boundary runs through a farm, eligible farmers and ranchers residing on such farm may hold office in the county and local administrative area in which the farm has been determined to be located for program participation purposes;

(3) Not be ineligible based on prohibited political activities, as specified in the Uniform Guidelines;

(4) Not have been dishonorably discharged from any branch of the armed services; removed for cause from any public office; convicted of any fraud, larceny, embezzlement, or felony, unless any such disqualification is waived by the State committee or the Deputy Administrator;

(5) Not have been removed as a county committee member, alternate to any county office, or as an employee for: Failure to perform the duties of the office; committing, attempting, or conspiring to commit fraud; incompetence; impeding the effectiveness of any program administered in the county; refusal to carry out or failure to comply with the Department's policy relating to equal opportunity and civil rights, including the equal employment policy, or interfering with others in carrying out such policy; or for violation of official instructions, unless any such disqualification is waived by the State committee or the Deputy Administrator;

(6) Not have been disqualified for future service because of a determination by a State committee that during previous service as a county committee member, alternate to any county office, or as an employee of the county committee, the person has: Failed to perform the duties of such office or employment; committed, attempted, or conspired to commit fraud; impeded the effectiveness of any program administered in the county; in the course of their official duties, refused to carry out or failed to comply with the Department's policy relating to equal opportunity and civil rights, including the equal employment policy, or interfered with others in carrying out such policy; or violated official instructions, unless any such disqualification is waived by the State committee or the Deputy Administrator;

(7) Not be an employee of the U.S. Department of Agriculture during the term of office;

(8) Not be a sales agent or employee of the Risk Management Agency or their affiliates during the term of office;

(9) Not be already serving as a county committee member with 1 or more years remaining in their current term of office; and

(10) Not have served more than 9 consecutive years (three consecutive terms as an elected member) as an elected or appointed county committee member just prior to the current election in which elected office is sought. After a break in service of at least 1 year, a member who has previously served 9 consecutive years may run for re-election or be re-appointed.

§7.19   Eligibility requirements of all other personnel.

(a) The county executive director and other employees of the county committee must not have been: Dishonorably discharged from any branch of the armed services; removed for cause from any public office; or convicted of any fraud, larceny, embezzlement, or any other felony, unless any such disqualification is waived by the State committee or the Deputy Administrator.

(b) The county executive director or any other employee of the county committee must not have been removed as a county committee member, alternate to any county office, county executive director, or other employee of the county committee for: Failure to perform the duties of the office; committing, attempting, or conspiring to commit fraud; incompetence; impeding the effectiveness of any program administered in the county; refusal to carry out or failure to comply with the Department's policy relating to equal opportunity and civil rights, including equal employment policy, or interfering with others in carrying out such policy; or for violation of official instructions, unless such disqualification is waived by the State committee or the Deputy Administrator.

(c) The county executive director or any other employee of the county committee must not have been disqualified for future employment because of a determination by a State committee that during previous service as a county committee member, alternate to any county office, or as an employee of the county committee, the person has: Failed to perform the duties of such office or employment; committed, attempted, or conspired to commit fraud; impeded the effectiveness of any program administered in the county; refused to carry out or failed to comply with the Department's policy relating to equal opportunity and civil rights, including the equal employment policy, or interfered with others in carrying out such policy; or violated official instructions, unless such disqualification is waived by the State committee or the Deputy Administrator.

§7.20   Prohibition on dual office.

(a) A member of the county committee cannot, during the time they are a committee member, also serve as:

(1) The secretary to the county committee;

(2) A member of the State committee; or

(3) A county executive director or any other county office employee.

(b) [Reserved]

§7.21   Terms of office of county committee members.

(a) The term of office of county committee members and alternates to such office will begin on a date fixed by the Deputy Administrator, which will be after their election or appointment.

(b) Before any county committee member or alternate to the county committee may take office as a county committee member, such person must sign an oath of office to pledge that they will faithfully, fairly, and honestly perform to the best of their ability all of the duties devolving on them as committee members.

(c) A term of office will continue until a successor is elected and qualified as specified in §§7.8 and 7.9 or appointed as specified in §7.17.

§7.22   State committee duties.

The State committee, subject to the general direction and supervision of the Deputy Administrator, will be generally responsible for carrying out all Farm Programs in the State or any other functions assigned by the Secretary or a designee of the Secretary.

§7.23   County committee duties.

(a) The county committee, subject to the general direction and supervision of the State committee, will be generally responsible for carrying out in the county Farm Programs and any other program or function assigned by the Secretary or a designee of the Secretary.

(b) The county committee will:

(1) Employ the county executive director, subject to standards and qualifications furnished by the State committee, except that incumbent directors must not be removed except as specified in §7.28. There must be no employment discrimination due to race, color, national origin, gender, religion, age, disability, political beliefs, sexual orientation, or marital or family status. The county executive director may not be removed for advocating or carrying out the Department's policy on equal opportunity and civil rights, including the equal employment policy. In the event it is claimed that dismissal is for such reasons, the dismissal will not become effective until the State committee and the Deputy Administrator have determined that dismissal was not because of such reasons;

(2) Direct outreach activities to reach and inform socially disadvantaged farmers and ranchers of all programs and county committee election processes;

(3) Follow official instructions to review, approve, and certify forms, reports, and documents requiring such action;

(4) Recommend to the State committee needed changes in boundaries of local administrative areas;

(5) Make available to farmers, ranchers, and the public information concerning the objectives and operations of the programs administered through the county committee;

(6) Make available to agencies of the Federal Government and others information with respect to the county committee activities in accordance with official instructions issued;

(7) Give public notice of the designation and boundaries of each local administrative area within the county prior to the election of county committee members;

(8) Direct the giving of notices in accordance with applicable regulations and official instructions;

(9) Recommend to the State committee desirable changes in or additions to existing programs;

(10) Conduct such hearings and investigations as the State committee may request; and

(11) Perform such other duties as may be prescribed by the State committee.

§7.24   Chairperson of the county committee duties.

The chairperson of the county committee or the person acting as the chairperson will preside at meetings of the county committee, certify such documents as may require the chairperson's certification, and perform such other duties as may be prescribed by the State committee.

§7.25   County executive director duties.

(a) The county executive director will execute the policies established by the county committee and be responsible for the day-to-day operations of the county office.

(b) The county executive director will:

(1) In accordance with standards and qualifications furnished by the State committee, employ the personnel of the county office. There must be no employment discrimination due to race, color, national origin, gender, religion, age, disability, political beliefs, sexual orientation, and marital or family status. An employee may not be removed under this paragraph for advocating or carrying out the Department's policy on equal opportunity and civil rights, including the equal employment policy. In the event it is claimed that the dismissal is for such reason, the dismissal will not become effective until the State committee and the Deputy Administrator have determined that dismissal was not because of such reason;

(2) Receive, dispose of, and account for all funds, negotiable instruments, or property coming into the custody of the county committee.

§7.26   Private business activity and conflicts of interest.

(a) No county committee member, alternate to any such office, or county office employee, may at any time use such office or employment to promote any private business interest.

(b) County committee members, alternates, and any person employed in the county office will be subject to the official instructions issued with respect to conflicts of interest and proper conduct.

§7.27   Political activity.

Permitted and prohibited political activities, with respect to any State committee member, county committee member, county executive director, or any other county employee, will be determined in accordance with applicable policies specified in FSA handbooks and directives.

§7.28   Removal from office or employment for cause.

(a) Adverse personnel actions involving any county committee member or alternate member, county executive director, or other county office employee will be taken for failing to perform the duties of their office, impeding the effectiveness of any program administered in the county, violating official instructions, or for misconduct.

(b) Any person whom FSA proposes to suspend or remove from office or employment must be given advance written notice of the reason for such action and must be advised of the right to reply to such a proposal and any right of further review and appeal if the person is removed or suspended.

§7.29   Delegation of authority to Deputy Administrator.

(a) Notwithstanding the authority vested by this part to a State committee, a county committee, and the county executive director, the Deputy Administrator has the authority to take adverse personnel actions involving any county committee member or alternate member, county executive director, or other county office employee for failing to perform the duties of their office or for misconduct.

(b) Any person whom FSA proposes to suspend or remove from office or employment must be given advance written notice of the reason for such action and must be advised of the right to reply to such a proposal and any right of further review and appeal if the person is removed or suspended.

§7.30   Custody and use of books, records, and documents.

(a) All books, records, and documents of or used by the county committee in the administration of programs assigned to it, or in the conduct of elections, will be the property of FSA or the United States Department of Agriculture, as applicable, and must be maintained in good order in the county office.

(b) Voted ballots must be placed into and remain in sealed containers, such containers not being opened until the prescribed date and time for counting. Following the counting of ballots, the ballots must be placed in sealed containers and retained for 1 year unless otherwise determined by the Deputy Administrator.

(c) The books, records, and documents referred to in paragraph (a) of this section must be available for use and examination:

(1) At all times by authorized representatives of the Secretary, the Administrator, or a designee of the Administrator.

(2) By State and county committee members, and authorized employees of the State and county office in the performance of duties assigned to them under this part, subject to instructions issued by the Deputy Administrator;

(3) At any reasonable time to any program participant insofar as such person's interests under the programs administered by the county committee may be affected, subject to instructions issued by the Deputy Administrator; and

(4) To any other person only in accordance with instructions issued by the Deputy Administrator.

§7.31   Administrative operations.

The administrative operations of county committees including, but not limited to, the following, must be conducted, except as otherwise provided in this part, in accordance with official instructions issued: Annual, sick, and other types of employee leave; the calling and conduct of elections; and the maintenance of records of county committee meetings.

§7.34   Retention of authority.

(a) Nothing in this part will preclude the Secretary, the Administrator, or the Deputy Administrator from administering any or all programs, or exercising other functions delegated to the county committee, State committee, or any employee of such committees.

(b) In exercising this authority, the Secretary, the Administrator, or the Deputy Administrator may designate for such period of time as deemed necessary a person or persons of their choice to be in charge with full authority to carry out the programs or other functions without regard to the normal duties of such committees or employees.

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