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'Cut, Relocate, Eviscerate': Moving a USDA Research Agency Will Have Lasting Consequences, Employees Say

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The Economic Research Service collects data on how many Americans lack access to food. When the agency moves to Kansas City, former employees say all of it could be lost.



The move has prompted more than half of the staff scheduled for relocation to quit, the department announced on Tuesday, and will spread the rest of the team thin, marooning them in the Midwest, away from the USDA and congressional staffers who used to seek their input on changes to programs or proposals. A USDA spokesperson says 72 ERS employees agreed to move to Kansas City, 76 would remain in the capital, and 99 quit, rather than relocate, although the numbers won't be official until September 30th, when the remaining employees report for work in Kansas City and the department says it will "implement an aggressive hiring strategy." 


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A federal employees union charged Tuesday that recent comments by acting White House chief of staff Mick Mulvaney confirm the Trump administration’s “grand strategy” to cut the federal workforce by relocating agency offices out of Washington.


Mulvaney said last week that the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s plan to relocate several hundred of jobs from Washington to the Kansas City area is “a wonderful way to streamline government.” Speaking to a group of fellow Republicans in his home state of South Carolina, he said it’s “nearly impossible” to fire federal workers but added that many will not move to “the real part of the country.”


Real American Mick Mulvaney



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