This blog is an employment resource for professionals seeking jobs in the emerging field of agricultural and food law. It emphasizes non-traditional employment opportunities instead of legal practice opportunities.
The LL.M. Program in Agricultural & Food Law at the University of Arkansas School of Law is pleased to offer this service. These posts are for informational purposes only; we do not make any representations regarding the employment offered.
Sunday, October 26, 2014
USDA: FSA- Agricultural Economist
Job Title:Agricultural Economist
Department:Department Of Agriculture
Agency:Farm Service Agency
Job Announcement Number:FSA-15-0036-EPAS-SG
$75,621.00 to $138,136.00 / Per Year
Friday, October 24, 2014 to Monday, November 3, 2014
US Citizens and Nationals; no prior Federal experience is required.
Public Trust - Background Investigation
The Farm Service Agency (FSA) is an exciting and rewarding place to start, build and/or continue your career. Be part of our team and support the well-being of American agriculture and the American public.
FSA's diverse culture and benefits allow for a healthy balance between your career and home life. In addition to a generous salary, FSA offers a friendly and professional working environment with a diverse workforce, flexible hours/work schedules, and other family-friendly benefits such as: paid vacation and sick leave, paid holidays, retirement and supplemental savings plan, a wide array of health, dental, vision, and life insurance plans, flexible spending accounts, and long-term care insurance.
PLEASE READ ALL THE INSTRUCTIONS UNDER "HOW TO APPLY" BEFORE YOU BEGIN.
We are concurrently announcing this position under Merit Promotion (applicants with status as current or former federal employees or applicants eligible under special hiring authorities) Vacancy Announcement Number: FSA-15-0004-EPAS-RMOat the GS-12/13/14 grade levels. Applicantswishing to be considered for all announcements must submit separate and complete application packages for each vacancy announcement.
Occasional travel may be required.
You must be a US Citizen or US National to apply.
Required to pass a background investigation and fingerprint check.
Registered for Selective Service, if applicable.
Successful completion of a one year probationary period.
This position is assigned to the Farm Service Agency, Economic and Policy Analysis Staff, Dairy and Sweeteners Analysis Group, located in Washington, DC.
Plan, direct, coordinate and conduct a continuing program of economic analyses that focuses on sugar programs and policies. In order to carry out these assignments and to define specific problems, the incumbent exercises significant independent judgment, creativity and initiative – defining and resolving specific problems related to these programs
Develop analytical forecasting techniques that are relevant to sugar product markets for use in projecting supply, demand and price balances as part of USDA’s monthly inter-agency projections process.
Develop detailed CCC outlay projections for the President’s Budget and Mid-Session Review.
Prepare program budget estimates for sugar as part of the annual President’s Budget and Mid-Session Review. Budget estimates include program planning as well as short-term and long-term budgetary projections.
Prepare cost-benefit assessments on proposed and final rules that are relevant to national program policies and determinations regarding the sugar sector.
Review and determine the accuracy of sugar and/or dairy product forecasts and projections that appear in government or trade publications.
Determine necessity for additional research and/or analysis. Prepare special position papers on a wide variety of sweetener and/or dairy topics, as required by DSA, FSA or USDA officials – obtaining clearance through appropriate levels of management
Applicants must meet all qualification requirements by 11:59 p.m. EST on the closing date, as defined below.
Basic Education Requirement
This position has an education (basic) requirement that all applications must meet. To meet minimum eligibility requirements an applicant must have:
A degree in economics that included at least 21 semester hours in economics and 3 semester hours in statistics, accounting, or calculus; ORA combination of education (including at least 21 semester hours in economics and 3 semester hours in statistics, accounting, or calculus) and appropriate experience related to the field of economics, or additional education.
Examples of qualifying appropriate experience include: individual economic-related research assignments requiring planning, information assembly, analysis and evaluation, conclusions and report preparation; supervisory or project coordination assignments involving a staff of professional economists, and requiring the evaluation and interpretation of economic information; or teaching assignments in a college or university that included both class instruction in economics subjects and one of the following (1) personal research that produced evidence of results, (2) direction of graduate theses in economics, or (3) service as a consultant or advisor on technical economics problems.
You MUST submit a copy of your college transcript that lists college courses detailing each course by the number and department (i.e., bio 101, math 210, etc.), course title, number of credit hours and grade earned. You may start at the GS-12 level if you have the following qualifications:
At least one full-time year (12 months) of specialized work experience equivalent in difficulty and responsibility to the GS-11 level in the Federal service, with the particular knowledge, skills and abilities to perform successfully the duties of this position, and that is typically in or related to the work of the position to be filled.
Specialized experience is specialized knowledge of the economic principles and the economic institutions that control the production, distribution, and consumption of food and fibers, matters of supply and demand, costs of production and transportation of agricultural commodities, and established practices, formalized customs, body of law, social habits and attitudes which underlie and govern the production and distribution of agricultural commodities and economic health of agriculture as a major segment of our economy. In addition, experience conducting studies of issues that have readily definable objectives, available information sources, and conventional research procedure. Studies conducted required a thorough understanding of the basic economic problem, the integration of the assigned study into the major research problem and the planning and execution of sequential work steps. Responsibilities included are determining data sources, selection and/or modification of techniques for analysis and processing of data, and for planning methods of presentation.
You may start at the GS-13 level if you have the following qualifications:
At least one full-time year (12-months) of specialized work experience equivalent in difficulty and responsibility to the GS-12 level in the Federal service with the particular knowledge, skills and abilities to perform successfully the duties of this position, and that is typically in or related to the work of the position to be filled.
Specialized experience is specialized knowledge of the economic principles and the economic institutions that control the production, distribution, and consumption of food and fibers, matters of supply and demand, costs of production and transportation of agricultural commodities, and established practices, formalized customs, body of law, social habits and attitudes which underlie and govern the production and distribution of agricultural commodities and economic health of agriculture as major segment of our economy. Responsibilities included a number of studies being conducted simultaneously, including the full scope of the research process, from the initiation of investigations and planning of methods, through the interpretation of findings and the preparation of final reports. Accountable not only for the factual accuracy of results but for the thoroughness of research plan and the cogency of interpretations, recognizing and evaluating significant and critical factors, to solve complex problems and to draw rational inferences based on research findings.
You may start at the GS-14 level if you have the following qualifications: At least one full-time year (12-months) of specialized work experience equivalent in difficulty and responsibility to the GS-13 level in the Federal service with the particular knowledge, skills and abilities to perform successfully the duties of this position, and that is typically in or related to the work of the position to be filled.
Specialized experience is specialized knowledge of the economic principles and the economic institutions that control the production, distribution, and consumption of food and fibers, matters of supply and demand, costs of production and transportation of agricultural commodities, and established practices, formalized customs, body of law, social habits and attitudes which underlie and govern the production and distribution of agricultural commodities and economic health of agriculture as major segment of our economy. Responsible for a pattern of small studies or program segments which represent in itself an integrated program, such assignments involve the initiation, formulation, planning, execution, and control of major special studies or continuing projects. Initiated, formulated, planed, executed, coordinated, and brought such studies to meaningful conclusions. Assignments were difficult to define, required sophisticated research technique, or involved the development of new or unconventional methods or approaches.
Experience refers to paid and unpaid experience, including volunteer work done through National Service programs (e.g., Peace Corps, AmeriCorps) and other organizations (e.g., professional; philanthropic; religious; spiritual; community, student, social). Volunteer work helps build critical competencies, knowledge, and skills and can provide valuable training and experience that translates directly to paid employment. You will receive credit for all qualifying experience, including volunteer experience.
The substitution of education is not qualifying for the GS-12/13 and 14 levels.
BACKGROUND INVESTIGATION AND FINGERPRINT CHECK: Selection and retention in this position is contingent on a successfully adjudicated FBI National Criminal History Check (fingerprint check) and a background investigation.
CONFIDENTIAL FINANCIAL DISCLOSURE REPORT: If selected for this position, you will be required to submit an Annual Financial Disclosure Report within 30 days of your initial appointment date, and annually thereafter.
HOW YOU WILL BE EVALUATED:
Applications will be evaluated in accordance with Office of Personnel Managements (OPM) Delegated Examining Procedures using category rating. Applicants who meet basic minimum qualifications will be placed in one of three categories: Best Qualified, Well Qualified, or Qualified. Within these categories, applicants eligible for veterans preference will receive selection priority over non-veterans. Category placement will be determined based on applicants quality of experience and the extent they possess the following knowledge, skills and abilities (or competencies):
Technical Economic Credibility
Planning and Evaluating
Cost Estimation and Analysis
We will review your application, including the online Occupational Questionnaire, to ensure you meet the job requirements and assess your ability to perform this job. Before any certificate can be issued to the selecting official, the resume and supporting documents are reviewed by an HR Specialist to ensure that (a) minimum qualification requirements are met and (b) the resume supports the answers provided to the job-specific questions. Your rating in this occupational questionnaire is subject to evaluation and verification based on the documents and references you submit. Be sure your resume clearly supports your responses to all the questions addressing experience and education relevant to this position. If a determination is made that you have rated yourself higher than is supported by your description of experience and/or education OR that your application is incomplete it may result in receipt of a lower or ineligible rating. Errors, omissions, or providing inaccurate information on federal documents may affect your eligibility. If selected, providing inaccurate information could also be grounds for dismissing you from the position/agency. Please follow all instructions carefully.
The Federal service offers a comprehensive benefits package. To explore the benefits offered to most Federal employees click here . Permanent employees are eligible to elect life and health insurance coverage and will be covered by a Retirement System. Employees will earn annual and sick leave.
Reemployment Priority List (RPL), Career Transition Assistance Plan (CTAP) or Interagency Career Transition Assistance Plan (ICTAP): If you are claiming RPL/CTAP/ICTAP eligibility, provide a copy of your most recent annual performance appraisal (at least "fully successful" or equivalent), and proof of eligibility, i.e., a RIF separation notice or Certification of Expected Separation, and SF-50 noting current position, grade level, and duty location. RPL/CTAP/ICTAP eligibles will be considered well-qualified if achieving a rating of 85 or above excluding veterans points.
Selective Service: If you are a male applicant born after December 31, 1959, you must certify that you have registered with the Selective Service, or are exempt from having to do so under Selective Service law. See http://www.sss.gov/.
Direct Deposit: Per Public Law 104-134 all federal employees are required to have federal payments made by direct deposit to a financial institution of their choosing.
E-Verify: Federal law requires agencies to use E-Verify system to confirm the employment eligibility of all new hires. If you are selected as a newly hired employee, the documentation you present for purposes of completing the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) Form I-9 on your entry-on-duty date will be verified through the DHS "E-Verify" system. Under the system, the new hire is required to resolve any identified discrepancies as a condition of continued employment.
Persons with disabilities who require alternative means for communication of program information (Braille, large print, audiotape, etc.) should contact: USDA's TARGET Center at 202-720-2600 (voice and TDD).
This announcement may be used to fill multiple vacancies.
If you are selected for a position with further promotion potential, you will be placed under a career development plan, and may be non-competitively promoted if you successfully complete the requirements and if recommended by management. However, promotion is neither implied nor guaranteed.
This position is eligible for telework and other flexible work arrangements.
Please read the entire announcement and all the instructions before you begin. The following instructions outline our application process.
You must complete this application process and submit all required documents electronically by 11:59 p.m. Eastern Standard Time (EST) on the closing date of this announcement.
We are available to assist you during business hours (normally 8:00 a.m. - 4:00 p.m., Monday - Friday). Applying online is highly encouraged. If applying online poses a hardship, please contact our office during business hours well before the closing date for an alternate method. All hardship application packages with supporting documents must be submitted no later than noon on the closing date of the announcement in order to be entered into the system prior to its closing.
This agency provides reasonable accommodation to applicants with disabilities on a case-by-case basis; contact us if you are requesting this.
Step 1: Create a USAJOBS account (if you do not have one) at www.usajobs.gov. It is recommended that as part of your profile you set up automatic email notification to be informed when the status of your application changes. If you choose not to set up this automatic notification, then you will have to log into your USAJOBS account to check on the status of your application.
Step 2: Create a resume with USAJOBS or upload a resume into your USAJOBS account. Customize your resume to ensure it documents duties and accomplishments you have gained that are directly related to this position in order to verify that qualifications are met. Your resume must support your responses to the online questionnaire (you may preview the online questionnaire by clicking on the link at the end of the How You Will Be Evaluated section of the job announcement).
Step 3: Click "Apply Online" and follow the prompts to complete the Occupational Questionnaire and attach any additional documents that may be required. You can update your application or documents anytime while the announcement is open. Log into your USAJOBS account and click on "Application Status." Click on the position title, and then select "Update Application” to continue.
NOTE: Verify that uploaded documents from USAJOBs transfer into the Agency's staffing system. Once in the Agency's staffing system you will have the opportunity to upload additional documents. Uploaded resumes must be less than 3MB and in one of the following document formats: GIF, JPG, JPEG, PNG, RTF, PDF, or Word (DOC or DOCX).
A resume must be provided. It should include relevant work experience (start/end dates stated in month/year, description of duties and salary), applicable education at a minimum, and your contact information. For current or previous Federal employees, it should also include the Pay Plan, Series and Grade for each work experience entry. Failure to do so will result in an ineligible rating.
In addition to your Occupational Questionnaire and Online Resume, other documents may be required.
1) If this vacancy announcement has a basic education requirement and/or you are substituting education for specialized experience, you must submit a copy of your college transcripts. Failure to do so will result in an ineligible rating.
2) If you are veteran and you are claiming veterans' preference, you must submit a DD-214, Certificate of Release from Active Duty which shows dates of service and discharge under honorable conditions (Member 4 Copy). Veterans claiming 10 point preference based on service connected disability, in addition to the DD-214, must also submit an SF-15 Application for 10-point Veterans' Preference, plus the proof of entitlement of this preference which is normally an official statement, dated 1991 or later, from the Department of Veterans Affairs certifying to the present existence of the service-connected disability and indicating the percentage of your disability (VA letter). Click here for more information on Veterans' preference. Current active duty members expecting to be discharged or released from active duty service in the armed forces under honorable conditions within 120 days may be granted tentative preference by submitting a "certification" document in lieu of DD-214.
3) If you are a current or former Federal employee, please provide the most current Notification of Personnel Action (Form SF-50) that verifies career-conditional/career status, position title, series and grade (do not submit an Award SF-50). FSA County employees must provide the most recent Notification of Personnel Action (Form SF-50-B or FSA-50) that verifies permanent status. Also provide the SF-50 that reflects the highest grade level held on a permanent basis or the full performance level of your current position, whichever is higher.
Agency Information: Farm Service Agency 9240 Troost Avenue, Beacon Facility, Mail Stop 8398 Kansas City, MO, 64131 United States Fax: (xxx)xxx-xxxx
WHAT TO EXPECT NEXT:
Once your online Occupational Questionnaire and resume has been received, you will receive an acknowledgment email that your submission was successful. After a qualification review of your complete application package has been made, you will be notified as to the status of your application. If further evaluation or interviews are required, you will be contacted. We will notify you, via your USAJOBS account of the outcome after each of these steps has been completed.