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The Texas Department of Agriculture is committed to providing the same high level of service to our customers during the COVID-19 emergency as they've come to expect.  Whether we're helping Texas farmers and ranchers continue to provide a safe and dependable food supply, ensuring Texas school children continue to have access to regular, healthy meals or supporting our vital rural hospitals and clinics, the Texas Department of Agriculture is here for Texans.

Due to the Coronavirus emergency, the Texas Department of Agriculture is now operating on a Skeleton Crew and will continue to do so until it is determined otherwise by agency leadership. As a result, we are asking all constituents, customers, licensees and others to contact TDA by email, as there will be limited staff in the office answering the phones. Additionally, TDA is not accepting external visitors in the office during this time. If you need to make a payment, you may do so online or via USPS.

Please visit this page often as we keep it updated with the latest information.





REGIONAL OFFICES

OUR REGIONAL OFFICES ARE TEMPORARILY CLOSED DUE TO COVID-19 RESTRICTIONS.

PLEASE CALL OR EMAIL AND SOMEONE WILL GET BACK TO YOU AS SOON AS POSSIBLE.

WEST TEXAS (Region 1)    |    NORTH TEXAS (Region 2)    |   GULF COAST (Region 3)   |  SOUTH CENTRAL (Region 4)  |  VALLEY (Region 5)


ESSENTIAL CRITICAL INFRASTRUCTURE WORKER AUTHORIZATION


On March 19, 2020 the Department of Homeland Security identified the specific industries that comprise Critical Infrastructure Industries (available at https://www.cisa.gov/publication/guidance-essential-critical-infrastructure-workforce).

If you are an Essential Critical Infrastructure Worker, you may find a link to the authorization letter below.

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This is an official government document subject to the provisions of Texas Penal Code Sec 37.10 - Tampering with Governmental Record. Misuse of this document subjects a fraudulent user to criminal prosecution.




SCHOOL MEALS

The Texas Department of Agriculture Food & Nutrition Division is in constant contact with federal agencies regarding the National School Lunch and Breakfast Programs. 

The Texas Department of Agriculture has also collaborated with the Texas Education Agency to develop a website to help find school meals in your area. To learn more visit TxSchools.org

In partnership with the Baylor Collaborative on Hunger and Poverty,TDA will be working to support meal deliver to nearly 1,000,000 meals to students. The meals are targeted to rural schools that are closed due to COVID-19. The Meals-to-You program will provide shelf-stable, easily prepared, kid-friendly meals to students during unexpected school closures lasting four weeks or longer to eligible families at no cost.Visit the Meals-To-You website for more information.

 For the most recent updates related to school nutrition during this emergency, visit the Square Meals website.

RURAL HOSPITALS

The TDA State Office of Rural Health has also ramped up efforts to assist rural community hospitals and clinics by extending grant deadlines, identifying aid resources and seeking emergency funding. More updates on the agency's response to COVID-19 are forthcoming.

SOCIAL DISTANCING

Texas Agriculture Commissioner Sid Miller had directed TDA to transition to a telework environment in response to the COVID-19 crisis.  In support of city, state and federal social distancing guidelines, the approximately 600 agency employees will vacate the Austin headquarters as well as the five regional offices around the state.  Most other agencies are also moving to a similar telework environment.  Commissioner Miller has also suspended all international and non-essential travel for TDA employees.

Operations at the regional offices in San Antonio, Dallas, Houston, Lubbock, and San Juan will move to telework and some inspection duties are temporarily lifted or redirected, including those for grocery stores and other locations with high volume public traffic. TDA will continue to allow limited personnel in the state office building in Austin to manage tasks not possible remotely, like mailroom duties. 

LICENSING

If individuals need assistance specifically with Structural Licensing, please email spcslicensing@TexasAgriculture.gov and a Licensing staff member will email you back to assist as soon as possible.

If individuals need assistance with all other program (other than SPCS), please email License.Inquiry@TexasAgriculture.gov and a Licensing staff member will email you back to assist as soon as possible.

WEIGHTS AND MEASURES

If individuals need compliance assistance or program questions specifically with Weights and Measures, please email WeightsMeasures@TexasAgriculture.gov and a program staff member will email you back to assist as soon as possible.

Eggs:
If individuals need compliance assistance or program questions specifically with the Egg program, please email EggQuality@TexasAgriculture.gov and a program staff member will email you back to assist as soon as possible.

Grain Warehouse, HMPC & Aquaculture:
If individuals need compliance assistance or program questions specifically with the Grain Warehouse, HMPC & Aquaculture program, please email GrainWarehouse@TexasAgriculture.gov and a program staff member will email you back to assist as soon as possible.

Organics:
If individuals need compliance assistance or program questions specifically with the Organic Certification program, please email Organic@TexasAgriculture.gov and a program staff member will email you back to assist as soon as possible.

CONSUMER SERVICE PROTECTION


Structural Pest Control Service:
If individuals need compliance assistance or program questions specifically with structural pest control, please email SPCS@TexasAgriculture.gov and a program staff member will email you back to assist as soon as possible.

Essential Critical Infrastructure Workers:
The US Department of Homeland Security has released a memorandum on identification of essential critical infrastructure workers during COVID-19 response. Here is a link to the memo: VIEW MEMO

Search for "exterminators" to see the Public Works section of the document where you'll find exterminators considered to be Essential Critical Infrastructure Workers.

Apprentice Registrations Expiring:
From March 31, 2020 forward, Apprentices whose registrations are expiring and were unable to take a Technician Training Course and/or were unable to take exams due to PSI closures as a result of COVID-19 will be granted extensions. Given the fluid nature of the COVID-19 pandemic, the length of the extensions is to be determined (TBD).

Continuing Education Unit (CEU) Courses and Technician Training Courses:
Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, TDA will allow for Department approved CEU courses and Technician Training Courses to be given as a web-based interactive course, where the audience can ask questions of the instructor, exchange information, etc. The Department must be notified ahead of time of any web-based interactive course, and we must be provided with web access to the course in the event we are able to monitor the course. We will allow such a course to be given up until June 1, 2020, when we will re-evaluate where we are with COVID-19. Due to the restriction of no gatherings of ten or more people, TDA will not be approving in-person CEUs until the restriction has been lifted.

Pesticide Product Evaluation and Registration:
If individuals need assistance or have questions about pesticide product registration, please email Product.Registration@TexasAgriculture.gov and a program staff member will email you back to assist as soon as possible. Please click here to read the Ag Pesticide Applicator and Course Provider Update.

PSI Testing:
Additionally, there are several programs that are involved in testing with PSI. Please see the link below for additional information on PSI testing location closures, and how PSI will be handling the situation due to COVID-19. For additional questions, please e-mail the respective program.
https://www.psionline.com/blog/psi-services-ceo-owned-and-operated-test-center-closures-in-the-us


TRADE & BUSINESS DEVELOPMENT

COVID-19 Resource Guide:
The TDA Trade & Business Development program has compiled a resource guide to assist our economic development partners. This document will be updated periodically as new programs and initiatives are announced: TBD COVID-19 Resource Guide.

If you have any questions, or recommendations on relevant information to include, please email Roxana.Newton@TexasAgriculture.gov.