Turmoil at USDA

Tuesday, November 24, 2009
Tom Vilsack

Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack has a lot of angry employees on his hands. The head of the U.S. Department of Agriculture began reorganizing staff in October, which included downgrading the positions of chief information officer and chief financial officer, along with other changes affecting the jobs of nearly 3,000 workers. USDA’s CFO, Evan Segal, who only came aboard in July, has left the department temporarily, and may not return at all. Some of the biggest critics of Vilsack’s “reorg” plan are in the Office of Human Resource Management, where all 58 employees were told they would have to move into new jobs, or risk termination.

One USDA staffer told Government Executive the situation was “absolutely chaotic.” The staffer added: “I lived through previous reorganizations, and they are usually clear-cut. But there is no plan in place here. It seems to change day by day.”
-Noel Brinkerhoff
Employees Raise Concerns About USDA Reorganization (by Robert Brodsky, Government Executive)


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