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I know many of you, like me, have been closely following the news and developments related to COVID-19. Our top priority at the Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS) is the safety and health of our employees and customers. At the same time, we understand our customers rely on our services and that they are important for business continuity. In the days ahead, our goal is to balance safety with service, and we will make adjustments as needed in order to adapt and continue to accomplish our mission of protecting the health and value of America’s agriculture and natural resources.
As a precaution, we have made the decision to close all of our offices to visitors. This means previously scheduled meetings may move to conference calls or be rescheduled altogether. We will discuss these options with you to best meet your needs. We will also be looking for ways to conduct business electronically—fortunately many of our services, such as ePermits, are already available online.
These are unique times, and we expect the current situation to continue to evolve based on the latest information from public health experts. With this being the case, we ask for your continued patience and flexibility as we endeavor to meet your needs and fulfill our mission.
I commit to keeping you updated until we return to normal operations. In the meantime, if you have any questions, I encourage you to reach out to your regular APHIS contacts for more information.