Date and Time: March 19, 2021, from 12 p.m. to 6 p.m. ET
The listening session will be conducted via webinar using ZOOM to provide groups and individuals an opportunity to share their views on how USDA can best serve the industry regarding the development, coordination and implementation of grant programs to support food processing, distribution, seafood processing, farmers markets, and producers and other businesses identified in the Consolidated Appropriations Act, 2021. The legislation directs USDA to use these grant funds to help businesses respond to coronavirus, including for measures to protect workers against COVID-19. All interested stakeholders are invited to attend. Stakeholders are also invited to provide oral comments during the sessions.
Please consider the following questions when submitting your feedback regarding coronavirus response grants:
- What is the definition of a small and mid-sized in your sector? (food processing, distribution, farmers markets, producers)
- How would a business in your sector confirm their status as small or mid-sized? (number of employees, sales dollar figures, etc.) and what kinds of documents might show that status?
- The legislation directs USDA to use these funds to help businesses organizations respond to coronavirus, including for measures to protect workers against COVID-19. What categories of expenses or investments have been or are now necessary in your business sector to respond to coronavirus?
- What are the impediments to people applying for these grants? What kinds of assistance or resources will they need to be able to do apply?
Registration: Registration will remain open until the start of the event, or until the session is full. However, you must register by midnight ET on March 16, 2021, to provide oral comments during the listening session. After registering, you will receive a confirmation email containing information about joining the webinar. Registrants who request to speak will be contacted by a staff member and must participate in a practice session to test audio requirements. Speakers will be introduced by a moderator; and speaking time is no more than three minutes.
These sessions are not intended for media. All statements made during these sessions are not made for attribution.
AMS encourages comments from smaller businesses, new and beginning farmers and ranchers, socially disadvantaged producers, veteran producers, and underserved communities, and/or organizations representing these entities. AMS expects commenters writing or speaking on behalf of these entities to engage and involve them in planning comments.
Questions regarding the listening session can be directed to AMSCOVIDStimulus@usda.gov. Persons with disabilities who require alternative means for communication (Braille, large print, audio tape, etc.) should contact the USDA Target Center at (202) 720-2600 (voice and TDD).