|Food Safety and Inspection
United States Department of Agriculture
Washington, D.C. 20250-3700
Communications to Congress
May 23, 2000
The Honorable Thad Cochran
Chairman, Committee on Appropriations,
Subcommittee on Agriculture, Rural
Development, and Related Agencies
United States Senate
136 Dirksen Senate Office Building
Washington, DC 20510
Dear Mr. Chairman:
Enclosed is the second report of the Food Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS), which provides an update on budget execution, staffing levels and staffing needs for the second quarter of fiscal year (FY) 2000. This report was requested by the conferees in the Conference Report accompanying the FY 2000 Agriculture Appropriations Act, P.L. 106-78.
Cumulative obligations through the second quarter for FY 2000 ending March 31, 2000 are estimated at $308.2 million, which is 47.5 percent of the FSIS net annual appropriation of $649.1 million. This represents slightly less than 50 percent of the net annual appropriation because some obligations for certain program costs, such as contracted services and equipment purchases, dont normally occur until the second half of the fiscal year. In addition, significant increases in pay and benefits were not in effect until the second quarter, and as planned, hiring of inplant food inspectors will not accelerate significantly until the third quarter of FY 2000.
As indicated in our report for the first quarter, FSIS is increasing its recruitment and hiring of food inspectors and plans to reach 7,610 in inplant permanent full-time employment by June 30, 2000. As the line graph indicates in the enclosed report, the rise in employment from 7,440 in the first quarter to 7,610 by the end of the third quarter will yield an increase in inplant employment of 170. All possible effort is being made to reach the 7,610 level by June 30 even with higher than expected attrition and the difficulty in hiring at many locations.
The inplant slaughter staffing profile included in the report reflects coverage of positions at approximately 600 slaughter and combination slaughter and processing establishments. The difference between the number of positions and permanent full-time staffing is the number of other types of staffing used to provide full coverage of all slaughter positions. Other types of staffing are defined in the report and their numerical distribution represents the predominant pattern of slaughter inspection coverage. This report also reflects the change in positions and inspectors from the beginning of the quarter to the end.
We have provided you with copies of the report for all Republican Members of the Subcommittee. Under separate cover, we have provided Senator Kohl with copies for the Democratic Subcommittee Members. If you have any questions or comments, please feel free to call the FSIS Office of Management at (202) 720-4425.
THOMAS J. BILLY
For Further Information Contact:
FSIS Congressional and Public Affairs Staff
Phone: (202) 720-3897
Fax: (202) 720-5704
Communications to Congress Page | FSIS Home Page | USDA Home Page