7 CFR 614.9 - Program decisions.
(a) Program decisions are final upon receipt of the program decision notice by the participant. Program decisions include all decisions issued by NRCS for programs that NRCS administers separate from the HELC/WC provisions. The participant has the following options for appeal of the program decision:
(1) An informal hearing before NRCS as provided for in paragraph (b) through paragraph (d) of this section;
(2) Mediation as provided for in § 614.11;
(3) An informal hearing before the FSA county committee pursuant to 7 CFR part 780 if the program decision is made under Title XII; or
(4) A hearing before NAD pursuant to 7 CFR part 11.
(b) A program participant must file an appeal request for a hearing with the appropriate State Conservationist as indicated in the decision notice within 30 calendar days from the date the participant received the program decision.
(c) The State Conservationist may accept a hearing request that is untimely filed under paragraph (b) of this section if the State Conservationist determines that circumstances warrant such an action.
(d) The State Conservationist will hold a hearing no later than 30 days from the date the appeal request was received. The State Conservationist will issue a written final decision no later than 30 days from the close of the hearing.
(e) NRCS will provide notice of the right to appeal to NAD on program decisions when equitable relief is denied by the Chief or the State Conservationist.