United States Code

USC most recently checked for updates: Jul 25, 2024

§ 3851.
Experienced services program
(a)
Establishment and purpose
The Secretary shall establish an experienced services program (referred to in this section as the “program”) for the purpose of utilizing the talents of individuals who are age 55 or older, but who are not employees of the Department of Agriculture or a State agriculture department, to provide—
(1)
technical services in support of the conservation-related programs and authorities carried out by the Secretary, including conservation planning assistance, technical consultation, and assistance with design and implementation of conservation practices; and
(2)
technical, professional, and administrative services to support the research, education, and economics mission area of the Department of Agriculture (including the Agricultural Research Service, the Economic Research Service, the National Agricultural Library, the National Agricultural Statistics Service, the Office of the Chief Scientist, and the National Institute of Food and Agriculture), including—
(A)
supporting agricultural research and information;
(B)
advancing scientific knowledge relating to agriculture;
(C)
enhancing access to agricultural information;
(D)
providing statistical information and research results to farmers, ranchers, agribusiness, and public officials; and
(E)
assisting research, education, and extension programs in land-grant colleges and universities (as defined in section 3103 of this title).
(b)
Program agreements
(1)
Relation to older American community service employment program

Notwithstanding any other provision of law relating to Federal grants, cooperative agreements, or contracts, to carry out the program during a fiscal year, the Secretary may enter into agreements with nonprofit private agencies and organizations eligible to receive grants for that fiscal year under the Community Service Senior Opportunities Act (42 U.S.C. 3056 et seq.) to secure participants for the program who will provide technical, professional, or administrative services, as applicable, under the program.

(2)
Required determination
Before entering into an agreement under paragraph (1), the Secretary shall ensure that the agreement would not—
(A)
result in the displacement of individuals employed by the Department, including partial displacement through reduction of non-overtime hours, wages, or employment benefits;
(B)
result in the use of an individual under the program for a job or function in a case in which a Federal employee is in a layoff status from the same or a substantially-equivalent job or function with the Department; or
(C)
affect existing contracts for services.
(c)
Funding source
(1)
Conservation technical services

Except as provided in paragraph (2), with respect to subsection (a)(1), the Secretary may carry out the program using funds made available to carry out each program under this chapter.

(2)
Exclusion

Funds made available to carry out the conservation reserve program may not be used to carry out the program.

(3)
Research, education, and economics services

With respect to services referred to in subsection (a)(2), the Secretary may carry out the program under the mission area referred to in such subsection to the extent that funds are specifically appropriated to provide such services under such mission area.

(d)
Liability
An individual providing technical, professional, or administrative services, as applicable, under the program is deemed to be an employee of the United States Government for purposes of chapter 171 of title 28 if the individual—
(1)
is providing technical, professional, or administrative services, as applicable, pursuant to an agreement entered into under subsection (b); and
(2)
is acting within the scope of the agreement.
(Pub. L. 99–198, title XII, § 1252, as added Pub. L. 110–234, title II, § 2710, May 22, 2008, 122 Stat. 1082, and Pub. L. 110–246, § 4(a), title II, § 2710, June 18, 2008, 122 Stat. 1664, 1810; amended Pub. L. 113–79, title II, § 2504, Feb. 7, 2014, 128 Stat. 752; Pub. L. 115–334, title VII, § 7611, Dec. 20, 2018, 132 Stat. 4830.)
cite as: 16 USC 3851