Potato Research and Promotion Plan; Amendment of Administrative Committee Structure, 16267-16269 [E7-6274]

Download as PDF cprice-sewell on PROD1PC61 with RULES Federal Register / Vol. 72, No. 64 / Wednesday, April 4, 2007 / Rules and Regulations However, the Committee advised USDA that most cranberries and cranberry products are currently held in the inventories of the regulated handlers until needed by processors, which greatly reduces the likelihood that large unreported inventories exist. Therefore, the collection of inventory information from entities under Part 926 no longer benefits the industry. In accordance with the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995 (44 U.S.C. Chapter 35), the information collection requirements related to this rule were previously approved by the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) and assigned OMB No. 0581–0222, Data Collection Requirements Applicable to Cranberries Not Subject to the Cranberry Marketing Order (7 CFR part 926). This information collection package expires August 31, 2007. We have submitted this information collection package (currently under OMB review) for renewal and requested OMB approval for a 1-hour burden placeholder for future reimplementation should changes occur in the cranberry industry that require reinstatement of these reporting and recordkeeping requirements under Part 926. The AMS is committed to complying with the E-Government Act, to promote the use of the Internet and other information technologies to provide increased opportunities for citizen access to Government information and services, and for other purposes. In addition, USDA has not identified any relevant Federal rules that duplicate, overlap or conflict with this rule. An interim final rule concerning this action was published in the Federal Register on December 28, 2006 (7 FR 78044). Copies of the rule were made available through the Internet by the Office of the Federal Register and USDA. A 30-day comment period ending February 26, 2007, was provided to allow interested persons to respond to the interim final rule. No comments were received. A small business guide on complying with fruit, vegetable, and specialty crop marketing agreements and orders may be viewed at: http//www.ams.usda.gov/ fv/moab/html. Any questions about the compliance guide should be sent to Jay Guerber at the previously mentioned address in the FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT section. After consideration of all relevant material presented, it is found that Part 926, as suspended in this action, as hereinafter set forth, does not tend to effectuate the declared policy of the Act and that the interim final rule, as published in the Federal Register (71 VerDate Aug<31>2005 15:40 Apr 03, 2007 Jkt 211001 FR 78044, December 28, 2006), is adopted, without change, in this final rule. List of Subjects in 7 CFR Part 926 Cranberries and cranberry products, Reporting and recordkeeping requirements. PART 926—DATA COLLECTION, REPORTING AND RECORDKEEPING REQUIREMENTS APPLICABLE TO CRANBERRIES NOT SUBJECT TO THE CRANBERRY MARKETING ORDER Accordingly, the interim final rule suspending 7 CFR part 926 which was published at 71 FR 78044 on December 28, 2006, is adopted as a final rule without change. I Dated: March 29, 2007. Lloyd C. Day, Administrator, Agricultural Marketing Service. [FR Doc. E7–6241 Filed 4–3–07; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 3410–02–P DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE Agricultural Marketing Service 7 CFR Part 1207 [Docket No. AMS–FV–06–0177; FV–06–703– FIR] Potato Research and Promotion Plan; Amendment of Administrative Committee Structure Agricultural Marketing Service, USDA. ACTION: Final rule. AGENCY: SUMMARY: The Department of Agriculture (USDA) is adopting, as a final rule, without change, an interim final rule amending the structure of the Administrative Committee (Committee) of the National Potato Promotion Board (Board) as prescribed in the Potato Research and Promotion Plan. This rule continues in effect the action that increased the number of ViceChairperson positions on the Committee from six to seven. The change is intended to more closely correlate the Committee’s representation with potato production in the Northwest district—a five state region which accounts for more than half of all U.S. potato production. DATES: Effective Date: May 4, 2007. FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Barry Broadbent, Marketing Specialist, or Gary Olson, Regional Manager, Northwest Marketing Field Office, Marketing Order Administration Branch, Fruit and Vegetable Programs, PO 00000 Frm 00007 Fmt 4700 Sfmt 4700 16267 AMS, USDA, 1220 SW., Third Avenue, Suite 385, Portland, OR 97204; Telephone: (503) 326–2724, Fax: (503) 326–7440, or e-mail: Barry.Broadbent@usda.gov or GaryD.Olson@usda.gov. Small businesses may request information on complying with this regulation by contacting Jay Guerber, Marketing Order Administration Branch, Fruit and Vegetable Programs, AMS, USDA, 1400 Independence Avenue, SW., STOP 0237, Washington, DC 20250–0237; Telephone: (202) 720– 2491, Fax: (202) 720–8938, or e-mail: Jay.Guerber@usda.gov. SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: This rule is issued under the Potato Research and Promotion Plan [7 CFR Part 1207], hereinafter referred to as the ‘‘Plan.’’ The Plan is authorized by the Potato Research and Promotion Act, as amended [7 U.S.C. 2611–2627], hereinafter referred to as the ‘‘Act.’’ The Office of Management and Budget (OMB) has waived the review process required by Executive Order 12866 for this action. This rule has been reviewed under Executive Order 12988, Civil Justice Reform. This rule is not intended to have retroactive effect. This rule will not preempt any State or local laws, regulations, or policies, unless they present an irreconcilable conflict with this rule. The Act provides that administrative proceedings must be exhausted before parties may file suit in court. Under section 311 of the Act, a person subject to a plan may file a petition with the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) stating that such plan, any provision of such plan, or any obligation imposed in connection with such plan is not in accordance with law and request a modification of such plan or to be exempted therefrom. Such person is afforded the opportunity for a hearing on the petition. After the hearing, USDA would rule on the petition. The Act provides that the district court of the United States in any district in which such person is an inhabitant, or has his or her principal place of business, has jurisdiction to review USDA’s ruling on the petition, provided that a complaint is filed not later than 20 days after date of the entry of the ruling. This rule adopts the interim rule that modified the structure of the Board’s Administrative Committee as prescribed in the Plan by increasing the number of Vice-Chairperson positions on the Committee from six to seven. This additional position is allocated, as provided in the Board’s bylaws, to the Northwest district. This rule increased E:\FR\FM\04APR1.SGM 04APR1 cprice-sewell on PROD1PC61 with RULES 16268 Federal Register / Vol. 72, No. 64 / Wednesday, April 4, 2007 / Rules and Regulations from 25 percent to 33 percent Board representation at the executive level for potato producers in Montana, Idaho, Oregon, Washington, and Alaska is. The change was recommended by a large majority of the Board, with only 3 of 84 members dissenting at the Board’s meeting on March 18, 2006. Section 1207.327(b) of the Plan provides the authority to make rules and regulations, with USDA approval, to effectuate the terms and conditions of the Plan. Section 1207.328(a) of the Plan provides the authority to select from its members such officers as may be necessary and to adopt such rules for the conduct of its business as the Board may deem advisable. Section 1207.507(a) of the Plan’s administrative rules delineates the structure of Board’s Administrative Committee. The Committee is selected from among Board members and must be composed of producer members, one or more importer member(s), and the public member. The Board, through the adoption of their bylaws, may prescribe the manner of selection and the number of members; except that the regulations mandate that the Committee shall include a Chairperson and a fixed number of Vice-Chairpersons. The bylaws also designate the officers and the immediate past Chairperson as the Board’s Executive Committee. Prior to this modification, the Plan provided for six Vice-Chairperson positions on the Committee. ViceChairperson positions are allocated in the Board’s bylaws to represent production districts as determined by the Board. This rule adopts the interim rule that increased the number of ViceChairperson positions to seven. The additional Vice-Chairperson position is allocated to the Northwest district, which historically has been the district with the greatest production. At its meeting on March 18, 2006, the Board discussed the structure of its model of governance as it relates to adequate representation of their constituents. The Board had been studying this issue for a number of years. Representatives from the potato producing districts that have experienced increases over the last 30 years expressed a desire for greater Board representation. The Northwest district, which includes the States of Montana, Idaho, Oregon, Washington, and Alaska, has increased production such that the district now accounts for 49.5 percent of all potatoes produced by or imported into the U.S. Under the current Plan, the Northwest district accounts for 47.4 percent of the votes of the full Board, which the Board has determined to be VerDate Aug<31>2005 15:40 Apr 03, 2007 Jkt 211001 equitable. In contrast, membership on the Executive Committee, the governing body of the Administrative Committee, is not representative of current production. The Northwest district has held only two of the eight executive positions, which represents only 25 percent of the Executive Committee vote, while production in the district has increased to nearly 50 percent. The members agreed to a compromise solution to increase the number of officer positions on the Administrative Committee by one and, through a change in the Board’s bylaws, to allocate the additional Vice-Chairperson position to the Northwest district. Eighty-one Board members voted in favor of the proposal and three members were opposed. Those in opposition represented the Northeast district and were concerned, even after the compromise proposal, that too much influence on the Board would shift to the West. Final Regulatory Flexibility Analysis and Paperwork Reduction Act In accordance with the Regulatory Flexibility Act (RFA)[5 U.S.C. 601 et seq.], the Agricultural Marketing Service has examined the impact of this rule on small entities. The purpose of the RFA is to fit regulatory actions to the scale of businesses subject to such action so that small businesses will not be disproportionately burdened. There are approximately 1,353 handlers, 5,223 producers, and 300 importers of potatoes and potato products who are subject to the provisions of the Plan. The Small Business Administration (SBA) defines small agricultural service firms, which includes handlers and importers, as those having annual receipts of less than $6,500,000, and small agricultural producers are defined as those having annual receipts of less than $750,000. Most of the producers and handlers, and some of the importers would be classified as small businesses under the criteria established by the SBA (13 CFR 121.201). In addition, producers of less than 5 acres of potatoes are exempt from this program. This rule adopts the interim rule that modified the structure of the Administrative Committee of the Board, as delineated under § 1207.507 of the Plan, by increasing the number of ViceChairperson positions from six to seven. The Plan requires that the Committee be comprised of producer Board members, one or more importer Board member(s), and the public Board member. The exact number of members seated on the Committee is determined by the Board through the Board’s bylaws. PO 00000 Frm 00008 Fmt 4700 Sfmt 4700 Additionally, the Plan regulations require that the Board elect a Committee Chairperson and a fixed number of ViceChairpersons. The Board, through their bylaws, allocates the Committee’s officer positions according to production districts, so as to provide equitable representation at the executive level. The Northwest district, which has historically represented a large percentage of total potato production, has in the past been allocated two officer positions, while the other five districts have each been allocated one. Currently, producers within the Northwest district collectively produce over 50 percent of the total U.S. potato production. The additional ViceChairperson position created by this rule is allocated by the Board’s revised bylaws to the Northwest district, thereby increasing representation for that district at the executive level from 25 percent to 33 percent. The authority for this action is provided in §§ 1207.327 and 1207.328 of the Plan. At their March 18, 2006, meeting, the Board discussed the factors leading up to this action and the potential impact on the industry after the change. However, there is no direct financial impact to producers, handlers, or importers as a result of this action. The Board discussed alternatives to this change, including reducing the number of districts, defining Committee representation as a ratio relative to Board members from each district, and reducing the size of the Board to the size of the existing Administrative Committee. None of the proposals garnered much support and were ultimately dropped from consideration because the changes were deemed to be too divisive to the industry. The AMS is committed to complying with the E-Government Act, to promote the use of the Internet and other information technologies to provide increased opportunities for citizen access to Government information and services, and for other purposes. This rule will not impose any additional reporting or recordkeeping requirements on either small or large potato handlers or importers. As with all Federal research and promotion programs, reports and forms are periodically reviewed to reduce information requirements and duplication by industry and public sector agencies. In addition, USDA has not identified any relevant Federal rules that duplicate, overlap, or conflict with this rule. Further, the Board’s meetings were widely publicized throughout the potato industry and all interested persons were E:\FR\FM\04APR1.SGM 04APR1 Federal Register / Vol. 72, No. 64 / Wednesday, April 4, 2007 / Rules and Regulations invited to attend the meetings and participate in Board deliberations. Like all Board meetings, the March 18, 2006, meeting was a public meeting and all entities, both large and small, were able to express their views on this issue. Finally, interested persons were invited to submit information on the regulatory and informational impacts of this action on small businesses. An interim final rule concerning this action was published in the Federal Register on December 22, 2006. Copies of the rule were mailed by the Board’s staff to all Board members and potato handlers. In addition, the rule was made available through the Internet by USDA and the Office of the Federal Register. The interim final rule provided for a 60day comment period which ended February 20, 2007. Two comments were received, both of which were in support of the change. A small business guide on complying with fruit, vegetable, and specialty crop marketing agreements and orders may be viewed at the following Web site: https://www.ams.usda.gov/fv/moab.html. Any questions about the compliance guide should be sent to Jay Guerber at the previously mentioned address in the FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT section. After consideration of all relevant material presented, including the Board’s recommendation, and other information, the interim final rule as published in the Federal Register (71 FR 76899, December 22, 2006), is adopted, as a final rule, without change. List of Subjects in 7 CFR Part 1207 Advertising, Agricultural research, Imports, Potatoes, Reporting and recordkeeping requirements. PART 1207—POTATO RESEARCH AND PROMOTION PLAN Accordingly, the interim final rule amending 7 CFR part 1207 which was published at 71 FR 76899 on December 22, 2006, is adopted as a final rule without change. cprice-sewell on PROD1PC61 with RULES I Dated: March 29, 2007. Lloyd C. Day, Administrator, Agricultural Marketing Service. [FR Doc. E7–6274 Filed 4–3–07; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 3410–02–P I 17 CFR Parts 140 and 145 PART 140—ORGANIZATION, FUNCTIONS, AND PROCEDURES OF THE COMMISSION Corrections to Regional Office Information Commodity Futures Trading Commission. ACTION: Final rule. AGENCY: The Commodity Futures Trading Commission (‘‘Commission’’) is amending its regulations to delete references to the Minneapolis office, which was closed as of December 31, 2006, and to update the address of the Southwestern regional office. DATES: Effective April 4, 2007. FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Stacy Yochum, Deputy Executive Director, at (202) 418–5157, Office of the Executive Director, Commodity Futures Trading Commission, Three Lafayette Centre, 1155 21st St., NW., Washington DC 20581; e-mail syochum@cftc.gov. SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: Commission Rule 140.2 describes the organization and location of the Commission’s regional offices in New York, Chicago, and Kansas City (the Eastern, Central, and Southwestern regional offices). As of December 31, 2006, the Commission closed the Minneapolis sub-office of the Southwestern regional office. In addition, the Kansas City office moved to a new location in September 2004. The Commission is therefore amending Rule 140.2 to delete the reference to the Minneapolis office and to reflect the new address of the Southwestern regional office. There is no change to the states covered by the Southwestern region. The Commission is also replacing the term ‘‘regional director’’ with ‘‘regional coordinator’’ to reflect the term used by the Commission to describe the head of each regional office. In addition, the Commission is amending the list of addresses provided in Rule 145.6, which instructs members of the public on where to direct requests for public records, to remove the reference to the Minneapolis office and to update the Kansas City address. SUMMARY: Jkt 211001 1. The authority citation for part 140 continues to read as follows: I Authority: 7 U.S.C. 2 and 12a. 2. Section 140.2 is amended by revising the section heading, the introductory text, and paragraph (c) to read as follows: I § 140.2 Regional Office-Regional Coordinators. Each of the Regional offices described herein functions as set forth in this section under the direction of a Regional Coordinator who, as a collateral duty, oversees the administration of the office and represents the Commission in negotiations with employee union officials and in interactions with external parties. Each regional office has delegated authority for the enforcement of the Act and administration of the programs of the Commission in the particular regions. * * * * * (c) The Southwestern Regional Office is located at Two Emanuel Cleaver II Blvd., Suite 300, Kansas City, Missouri 64112, and is responsible for enforcement of the Act and administration of the programs of the Commission in the States of Alaska, Arizona, Arkansas, California, Colorado, Hawaii, Idaho, Iowa, Kansas, Louisiana, Minnesota, Missouri, Montana, Nebraska, Nevada, New Mexico, North Dakota, Oklahoma, Oregon, South Dakota, Texas, Utah, Washington, and Wyoming. PART 145—COMMISSION RECORDS AND INFORMATION 3. The authority citation for part 145 continues to read as follows: I Authority: Pub. L. 99–570, 100 Stat. 3207; Pub. L. 89–554, 80 Stat. 54; Pub. L. 98–502, 88 Stat. 1561–1564 (5 U.S.C. 552); Sec. 101(a), Pub. L. 93–463, 88 Stat. 1389 (5 U.S.C. 4a(j)); unless otherwise noted. 4. Section 145.6 is amended by revising paragraph (a) to read as follows: I List of Subjects 17 CFR Part 140 § 145.6 Commission office to contact for assistance; registration records available. (a) Whenever this part directs that a request be directed to the Assistant Secretary of the Commission for FOI, Privacy and Sunshine Acts Compliance, the request shall be made in writing and shall be addressed or otherwise directed to the Office of the Secretariat, Commodity Futures Trading Authority delegations (Government agencies), Organization and functions (Government agencies). Confidential business information, Freedom of Information. 15:40 Apr 03, 2007 Accordingly, 17 CFR parts 140 and 145 are amended as follows: COMMODITY FUTURES TRADING COMMISSION 17 CFR Part 145 VerDate Aug<31>2005 16269 PO 00000 Frm 00009 Fmt 4700 Sfmt 4700 E:\FR\FM\04APR1.SGM 04APR1

Agencies

[Federal Register Volume 72, Number 64 (Wednesday, April 4, 2007)]
[Rules and Regulations]
[Pages 16267-16269]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Printing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: E7-6274]


-----------------------------------------------------------------------

DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE

Agricultural Marketing Service

7 CFR Part 1207

[Docket No. AMS-FV-06-0177; FV-06-703-FIR]


Potato Research and Promotion Plan; Amendment of Administrative 
Committee Structure

AGENCY: Agricultural Marketing Service, USDA.

ACTION: Final rule.

-----------------------------------------------------------------------

SUMMARY: The Department of Agriculture (USDA) is adopting, as a final 
rule, without change, an interim final rule amending the structure of 
the Administrative Committee (Committee) of the National Potato 
Promotion Board (Board) as prescribed in the Potato Research and 
Promotion Plan. This rule continues in effect the action that increased 
the number of Vice-Chairperson positions on the Committee from six to 
seven. The change is intended to more closely correlate the Committee's 
representation with potato production in the Northwest district--a five 
state region which accounts for more than half of all U.S. potato 
production.

DATES: Effective Date: May 4, 2007.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Barry Broadbent, Marketing Specialist, 
or Gary Olson, Regional Manager, Northwest Marketing Field Office, 
Marketing Order Administration Branch, Fruit and Vegetable Programs, 
AMS, USDA, 1220 SW., Third Avenue, Suite 385, Portland, OR 97204; 
Telephone: (503) 326-2724, Fax: (503) 326-7440, or e-mail: 
Barry.Broadbent@usda.gov or GaryD.Olson@usda.gov.
    Small businesses may request information on complying with this 
regulation by contacting Jay Guerber, Marketing Order Administration 
Branch, Fruit and Vegetable Programs, AMS, USDA, 1400 Independence 
Avenue, SW., STOP 0237, Washington, DC 20250-0237; Telephone: (202) 
720-2491, Fax: (202) 720-8938, or e-mail: Jay.Guerber@usda.gov.

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: This rule is issued under the Potato 
Research and Promotion Plan [7 CFR Part 1207], hereinafter referred to 
as the ``Plan.'' The Plan is authorized by the Potato Research and 
Promotion Act, as amended [7 U.S.C. 2611-2627], hereinafter referred to 
as the ``Act.''
    The Office of Management and Budget (OMB) has waived the review 
process required by Executive Order 12866 for this action.
    This rule has been reviewed under Executive Order 12988, Civil 
Justice Reform. This rule is not intended to have retroactive effect. 
This rule will not preempt any State or local laws, regulations, or 
policies, unless they present an irreconcilable conflict with this 
rule.
    The Act provides that administrative proceedings must be exhausted 
before parties may file suit in court. Under section 311 of the Act, a 
person subject to a plan may file a petition with the U.S. Department 
of Agriculture (USDA) stating that such plan, any provision of such 
plan, or any obligation imposed in connection with such plan is not in 
accordance with law and request a modification of such plan or to be 
exempted therefrom. Such person is afforded the opportunity for a 
hearing on the petition. After the hearing, USDA would rule on the 
petition. The Act provides that the district court of the United States 
in any district in which such person is an inhabitant, or has his or 
her principal place of business, has jurisdiction to review USDA's 
ruling on the petition, provided that a complaint is filed not later 
than 20 days after date of the entry of the ruling.
    This rule adopts the interim rule that modified the structure of 
the Board's Administrative Committee as prescribed in the Plan by 
increasing the number of Vice-Chairperson positions on the Committee 
from six to seven. This additional position is allocated, as provided 
in the Board's bylaws, to the Northwest district. This rule increased

[[Page 16268]]

from 25 percent to 33 percent Board representation at the executive 
level for potato producers in Montana, Idaho, Oregon, Washington, and 
Alaska is. The change was recommended by a large majority of the Board, 
with only 3 of 84 members dissenting at the Board's meeting on March 
18, 2006.
    Section 1207.327(b) of the Plan provides the authority to make 
rules and regulations, with USDA approval, to effectuate the terms and 
conditions of the Plan. Section 1207.328(a) of the Plan provides the 
authority to select from its members such officers as may be necessary 
and to adopt such rules for the conduct of its business as the Board 
may deem advisable.
    Section 1207.507(a) of the Plan's administrative rules delineates 
the structure of Board's Administrative Committee. The Committee is 
selected from among Board members and must be composed of producer 
members, one or more importer member(s), and the public member. The 
Board, through the adoption of their bylaws, may prescribe the manner 
of selection and the number of members; except that the regulations 
mandate that the Committee shall include a Chairperson and a fixed 
number of Vice-Chairpersons. The bylaws also designate the officers and 
the immediate past Chairperson as the Board's Executive Committee.
    Prior to this modification, the Plan provided for six Vice-
Chairperson positions on the Committee. Vice-Chairperson positions are 
allocated in the Board's bylaws to represent production districts as 
determined by the Board. This rule adopts the interim rule that 
increased the number of Vice-Chairperson positions to seven. The 
additional Vice-Chairperson position is allocated to the Northwest 
district, which historically has been the district with the greatest 
production.
    At its meeting on March 18, 2006, the Board discussed the structure 
of its model of governance as it relates to adequate representation of 
their constituents. The Board had been studying this issue for a number 
of years. Representatives from the potato producing districts that have 
experienced increases over the last 30 years expressed a desire for 
greater Board representation.
    The Northwest district, which includes the States of Montana, 
Idaho, Oregon, Washington, and Alaska, has increased production such 
that the district now accounts for 49.5 percent of all potatoes 
produced by or imported into the U.S. Under the current Plan, the 
Northwest district accounts for 47.4 percent of the votes of the full 
Board, which the Board has determined to be equitable. In contrast, 
membership on the Executive Committee, the governing body of the 
Administrative Committee, is not representative of current production. 
The Northwest district has held only two of the eight executive 
positions, which represents only 25 percent of the Executive Committee 
vote, while production in the district has increased to nearly 50 
percent.
    The members agreed to a compromise solution to increase the number 
of officer positions on the Administrative Committee by one and, 
through a change in the Board's bylaws, to allocate the additional 
Vice-Chairperson position to the Northwest district. Eighty-one Board 
members voted in favor of the proposal and three members were opposed. 
Those in opposition represented the Northeast district and were 
concerned, even after the compromise proposal, that too much influence 
on the Board would shift to the West.

Final Regulatory Flexibility Analysis and Paperwork Reduction Act

    In accordance with the Regulatory Flexibility Act (RFA)[5 U.S.C. 
601 et seq.], the Agricultural Marketing Service has examined the 
impact of this rule on small entities. The purpose of the RFA is to fit 
regulatory actions to the scale of businesses subject to such action so 
that small businesses will not be disproportionately burdened.
    There are approximately 1,353 handlers, 5,223 producers, and 300 
importers of potatoes and potato products who are subject to the 
provisions of the Plan. The Small Business Administration (SBA) defines 
small agricultural service firms, which includes handlers and 
importers, as those having annual receipts of less than $6,500,000, and 
small agricultural producers are defined as those having annual 
receipts of less than $750,000. Most of the producers and handlers, and 
some of the importers would be classified as small businesses under the 
criteria established by the SBA (13 CFR 121.201). In addition, 
producers of less than 5 acres of potatoes are exempt from this 
program.
    This rule adopts the interim rule that modified the structure of 
the Administrative Committee of the Board, as delineated under Sec.  
1207.507 of the Plan, by increasing the number of Vice-Chairperson 
positions from six to seven. The Plan requires that the Committee be 
comprised of producer Board members, one or more importer Board 
member(s), and the public Board member. The exact number of members 
seated on the Committee is determined by the Board through the Board's 
bylaws. Additionally, the Plan regulations require that the Board elect 
a Committee Chairperson and a fixed number of Vice-Chairpersons.
    The Board, through their bylaws, allocates the Committee's officer 
positions according to production districts, so as to provide equitable 
representation at the executive level. The Northwest district, which 
has historically represented a large percentage of total potato 
production, has in the past been allocated two officer positions, while 
the other five districts have each been allocated one. Currently, 
producers within the Northwest district collectively produce over 50 
percent of the total U.S. potato production. The additional Vice-
Chairperson position created by this rule is allocated by the Board's 
revised bylaws to the Northwest district, thereby increasing 
representation for that district at the executive level from 25 percent 
to 33 percent. The authority for this action is provided in Sec. Sec.  
1207.327 and 1207.328 of the Plan.
    At their March 18, 2006, meeting, the Board discussed the factors 
leading up to this action and the potential impact on the industry 
after the change. However, there is no direct financial impact to 
producers, handlers, or importers as a result of this action.
    The Board discussed alternatives to this change, including reducing 
the number of districts, defining Committee representation as a ratio 
relative to Board members from each district, and reducing the size of 
the Board to the size of the existing Administrative Committee. None of 
the proposals garnered much support and were ultimately dropped from 
consideration because the changes were deemed to be too divisive to the 
industry.
    The AMS is committed to complying with the E-Government Act, to 
promote the use of the Internet and other information technologies to 
provide increased opportunities for citizen access to Government 
information and services, and for other purposes.
    This rule will not impose any additional reporting or recordkeeping 
requirements on either small or large potato handlers or importers. As 
with all Federal research and promotion programs, reports and forms are 
periodically reviewed to reduce information requirements and 
duplication by industry and public sector agencies. In addition, USDA 
has not identified any relevant Federal rules that duplicate, overlap, 
or conflict with this rule.
    Further, the Board's meetings were widely publicized throughout the 
potato industry and all interested persons were

[[Page 16269]]

invited to attend the meetings and participate in Board deliberations. 
Like all Board meetings, the March 18, 2006, meeting was a public 
meeting and all entities, both large and small, were able to express 
their views on this issue. Finally, interested persons were invited to 
submit information on the regulatory and informational impacts of this 
action on small businesses.
    An interim final rule concerning this action was published in the 
Federal Register on December 22, 2006. Copies of the rule were mailed 
by the Board's staff to all Board members and potato handlers. In 
addition, the rule was made available through the Internet by USDA and 
the Office of the Federal Register. The interim final rule provided for 
a 60-day comment period which ended February 20, 2007. Two comments 
were received, both of which were in support of the change.
    A small business guide on complying with fruit, vegetable, and 
specialty crop marketing agreements and orders may be viewed at the 
following Web site: https://www.ams.usda.gov/fv/moab.html. Any questions 
about the compliance guide should be sent to Jay Guerber at the 
previously mentioned address in the FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT 
section.
    After consideration of all relevant material presented, including 
the Board's recommendation, and other information, the interim final 
rule as published in the Federal Register (71 FR 76899, December 22, 
2006), is adopted, as a final rule, without change.

List of Subjects in 7 CFR Part 1207

    Advertising, Agricultural research, Imports, Potatoes, Reporting 
and recordkeeping requirements.

PART 1207--POTATO RESEARCH AND PROMOTION PLAN

0
Accordingly, the interim final rule amending 7 CFR part 1207 which was 
published at 71 FR 76899 on December 22, 2006, is adopted as a final 
rule without change.

    Dated: March 29, 2007.
Lloyd C. Day,
Administrator, Agricultural Marketing Service.
[FR Doc. E7-6274 Filed 4-3-07; 8:45 am]
BILLING CODE 3410-02-P