The purpose of this section is to ensure compilation and public disclosure of data to assess and hold the Department of Agriculture accountable for the nondiscriminatory participation of socially disadvantaged farmers and ranchers in programs of the Department.
(b) Definition of socially disadvantaged farmer or rancher
In this section, the term “socially disadvantaged farmer or rancher” has the meaning given the term in section
2003(e) of this title.
(c) Compilation of program participation data
(1) Annual requirement
For each county and State in the United States, the Secretary of Agriculture (referred to in this section as the “Secretary”) shall annually compile program application and participation rate data regarding socially disadvantaged farmers or ranchers by computing for each program of the Department of Agriculture that serves agricultural producers and landowners—
(A)raw numbers of applicants and participants by race, ethnicity, and gender, subject to appropriate privacy protections, as determined by the Secretary; and
(B)the application and participation rate, by race, ethnicity, and gender, as a percentage of the total participation rate of all agricultural producers and landowners.
(2) Authority to collect data
The heads of the agencies of the Department of Agriculture shall collect and transmit to the Secretary any data, including data on race, gender, and ethnicity, that the Secretary determines to be necessary to carry out paragraph (1).
Using the technologies and systems of the National Agricultural Statistics Service, the Secretary shall compile and present the data compiled under paragraph (1) for each program described in that paragraph in a manner that includes the raw numbers and participation rates for—
(A)the entire United States;
(B)each State; and
(C)each county in each State.
(4) Public availability of report
The Secretary shall maintain and make readily available to the public, via website and otherwise in electronic and paper form, the report described in paragraph (3).
(d) Limitations on use of data
(1) Privacy protections
In carrying out this section, the Secretary shall not disclose the names or individual data of any program participant.
(2) Authorized uses
The data under this section shall be used exclusively for the purposes described in subsection (a).
Except as otherwise provided, the data under this section shall not be used for the evaluation of individual applications for assistance.
(e) Receipt for service or denial of service
In any case in which a current or prospective producer or landowner, in person or in writing, requests from the Farm Service Agency, the Natural Resources Conservation Service, or an agency of the Rural Development Mission Area any benefit or service offered by the Department to agricultural producers or landowners and, at the time of the request, also requests a receipt, the Secretary shall issue, on the date of the request, a receipt to the producer or landowner that contains—
(1)the date, place, and subject of the request; and
(2)the action taken, not taken, or recommended to the producer or landowner.
2008—Subsecs. (c), (d). Pub. L. 110–246, § 14006, added subsecs. (c) and (d) and struck out former subsec. (c) which related to annual computation of the participation rate of socially disadvantaged farmers and ranchers as a percentage of the total participation of all farmers and ranchers for each Department of Agriculture program and requirement that participation according to race, ethnicity, and gender be included in each report.
Pub. L. 110–234, title XIV, § 14007,May 22, 2008, 122 Stat. 1446, and Pub. L. 110–246, § 4(a), title XIV, § 14007,June 18, 2008, 122 Stat. 1664, 2208, provided that: “The Secretary [of Agriculture], acting through the Assistant Secretary for Civil Rights of the Department of Agriculture, shall use the reports described in subsection (c) ofsection
2501A of the Food, Agriculture, Conservation, and Trade Act of 1990 (7 U.S.C. 2279–1), as amended by section
14006, in the conduct of oversight and evaluation of civil rights compliance.”
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