It’s taken time to get key positions filled at USDA. Undersecretary for Farm and Foreign Agricultural Services, Bill Northey, understands all too well. Northey’s been in his role for just seven weeks. It took him about four months to get through the Senate confirmation process. Northey is seeing progress. “We have a position, the chief at the NRCS, that’s being filled by career folks, but we will get political folks in those positions as well. It just takes time to get through the process.” Northey doesn’t think the staffing holdup will keep USDA from implementing a new farm bill. Lawmakers somewhat agree. However, Minnesota Senator Klobuchar says there hasn’t been a major crisis to challenge this. The bigger concerns are with staffing at the Environmental Protection Agency. However, Northey says the USDA is focusing on how to make things better with the new farm bill, whenever it’s passed.