Northey Sworn in as USDA Undersecretary

Former Iowa Agriculture Secretary Bill Northey now has the title of undersecretary for the USDA. Northey stepped down earlier this week from what he called a “job of a lifetime” to join the U.S. Department of Agriculture. Northey, who was nominated to a USDA post six months ago, received Senate confirmation last week, and was sworn in by Agriculture Secretary Sonny Perdue Tuesday night in Iowa. He takes the position of undersecretary for farm production and conservation and will lead the Farm Service Agency, the Natural Resources Conservation Service and the Risk Management Agency. Up first for Northey at USDA, he expects helping Congress pass the next farm bill, which USDA serves as a resource to lawmakers during the farm bill process. Northey told the Des Moines Register: “We’ll want to make sure that the farm bill works for producers out in the countryside.” However, he cautioned: “I don’t go into it with a big notion that my position will change the direction of the farm bill.”