Cotton Research and Promotion Program: Procedures for Conduct of Sign-Up Period, 41460-41462 [E7-14608]

Download as PDF 41460 Proposed Rules Federal Register Vol. 72, No. 145 Monday, July 30, 2007 This section of the FEDERAL REGISTER contains notices to the public of the proposed issuance of rules and regulations. The purpose of these notices is to give interested persons an opportunity to participate in the rule making prior to the adoption of the final rules. DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE Agricultural Marketing Service 7 CFR Part 1205 [Docket No. AMS–CN–07–0094; CN–07–006] Cotton Research and Promotion Program: Procedures for Conduct of Sign-Up Period Agricultural Marketing Service. Proposed rule. AGENCY: rwilkins on PROD1PC63 with PROPOSALS ACTION: SUMMARY: This proposed rule would amend the rules and regulations regarding the procedures for the conduct of a sign-up period for eligible cotton producers and importers to request a continuance referendum on the 1991 amendments to the Cotton Research and Promotion Order (Order) provided for in the Cotton Research and Promotion Act (Act) amendments of 1990. The amendments would update various dates, name changes, addresses, and make other administrative changes. DATES: Comments must be received on or before August 9, 2007. ADDRESSES: Interested persons are invited to submit written comments concerning this proposed rule to Shethir M. Riva, Chief, Research and Promotion Staff, Cotton Program, AMS, USDA, Stop 0224, 1400 Independence Ave., SW., Room 2639–S, Washington, DC 20250–0224. Comments should be submitted in triplicate. Comments may also be submitted electronically through www.regulations.gov. All comments should reference the docket number and the date and page number of this issue of the Federal Register. All comments received will be made available for public inspection at Cotton Program, AMS, USDA, Stop 0224, 1400 Independence Ave., SW., Room 2639–S, Washington, DC 20250–0224 during regular business hours. FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Shethir M. Riva, Chief, Research and Promotion Staff, Cotton Program, AMS, USDA, Stop 0224, 1400 Independence Ave., SW., Room 2639–S, Washington, VerDate Aug<31>2005 17:00 Jul 27, 2007 Jkt 211001 DC 20250–0224, telephone (202) 720– 6603, facsimile (202) 690–1718, or email at Shethir.Riva@usda.gov. SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: Executive Order 12866 The Office of Management and Budget has waived the review process required by Executive Order 12866 for this action. Executive Order 12988 This rule has been reviewed under Executive Order 12988, Civil Justice Reform. It is not intended to have retroactive effect. This rule would not preempt any State or local laws, regulations, or policies, unless they present an irreconcilable conflict with this rule. The Cotton Research and Promotion Act (7 U.S.C. 2101–2118) provides that administrative proceedings must be exhausted before parties may file suit in court. Under Section 12 of the Act, any person subject to an order may file with USDA a petition stating that the order, any provision of the order, or any obligation imposed in connection with the order is not in accordance with law and requesting a modification of the order 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 the person is an inhabitant, or has his or her principal place of business, has jurisdiction to review the USDA’s ruling, provided a complaint is filed within 20 days from the date of the entry of ruling. Regulatory Flexibility Act Pursuant to requirements set forth in the Regulatory Flexibility Act (RFA) [5 U.S.C. 601 et seq.], the Agricultural Marketing Service has considered the economic effect of this action on small entities and has determined that its implementation will not have a significant economic impact on a substantial number of small entities. There are currently approximately 19,000 producers, and approximately 14,000 importers that are subject to the order. The majority of these producers and importers are small businesses under the criteria established by the Small Business Administration. Only those eligible persons who are in favor of conducting a referendum would PO 00000 Frm 00001 Fmt 4702 Sfmt 4702 need to participate in the sign-up period. Of the 46,220 total valid ballots received in the 1991 referendum, 27,879, or 60 percent, favored the amendments to the Order, and 18,341, or 40 percent, opposed the amendments to the Order. This proposed rule would provide those persons who are not in favor of the continuance of the Order amendments an opportunity to request a continuance referendum. The eligibility and participation requirements for producers and importers are substantially the same as the rules that established the eligibility and participation requirements for the 1991 referendum, and for the 1997 and 2001 sign-up period. The 1997 and 2001 sign-ups did not generate the required number of signatures to hold another referendum. The amendments proposed in this action would update various dates, name changes, addresses, and make other miscellaneous changes. The proposed sign-up procedures would not impose a substantial burden or have a significant impact on persons subject to the Order, because participation is not mandatory, not all persons subject to the Order are expected to participate, and USDA will determine producer and importer eligibility. The information collection requirements under the Paperwork Reduction Act are minimal. Paperwork Reduction Act The information collections proposed by this rule will be carried out under the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) Control Number 0581–0093. This rule will not add to the overall burden currently approved by OMB and assigned OMB Control Number 0581– 0093 under the provisions of the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995 (44 U.S.C. Chapter 35). This OMB Control Number is referenced in Section 1205.541 of the regulations. Background The 1991 amendments to the Cotton Research and Promotion Order (7 CFR 1205 et seq.) were implemented following the July 1991 referendum. The amendments were provided for in the Cotton Research and Promotion Act (7 U.S.C. 2101–2118) amendments of 1990. These amendments provided for: (1) Importer representation on the Cotton Board by an appropriate number of persons, to be determined by USDA, who import cotton or cotton products E:\FR\FM\30JYP1.SGM 30JYP1 rwilkins on PROD1PC63 with PROPOSALS Federal Register / Vol. 72, No. 145 / Monday, July 30, 2007 / Proposed Rules into the U.S., and whom USDA selects from nominations submitted by importer organizations certified by USDA; (2) assessments levied on imported cotton and cotton products at a rate determined in the same manner as for U.S. cotton; (3) increasing the amount USDA can be reimbursed for the conduct of a referendum from $200,000 to $300,000; (4) reimbursing government agencies that assist in administering the collection of assessments on imported cotton and cotton products; and (5) terminating the right of producers to demand a refund of assessments. On March 6, 2007, USDA issued a determination based on its review, (72 FR 9918), not to conduct a referendum regarding the 1991 amendments to the Order. However, the Act provides that USDA shall nevertheless conduct a referendum at the request of 10 percent or more of the total number of eligible producers and importers that voted in the most recent referendum. The Act provides for a sign-up period during which eligible cotton producers and importers may request that USDA conduct a referendum on continuation of the 1991 amendments to the Order. Accordingly, USDA will provide all eligible Upland cotton producers and importers an opportunity to request a continuance referendum regarding the 1991 amendments to the Order. The sign-up period will be provided for all eligible producers and importers. Eligible cotton producers would be provided the opportunity to sign-up to request a continuance referendum in person at the county FSA office where their farm is located. If the producer’s land is in more than one county, the producer shall sign-up at the county office where FSA administratively maintains and processes the producer’s farm records. Producers who choose not to visit the county FSA office in person may request a sign-up form in the mail from the same office. USDA would mail sign-up information, including a written request form, to all known, eligible cotton importers. Importers who favor the conduct of a continuance referendum would return their signed request forms to USDA, FSA, DAFO, Attention: Rick Pinkston, PO Box 23103, Washington, DC 20026–3103. Importers who do not receive a request form in the mail by September 4, 2007, and who meet the eligibility requirements to participate in the signup, may submit a written, signed request for a continuance referendum. Such request must be accompanied by a copy of the U.S. Customs and Border Protection Form 7501 showing payment of a cotton assessment for calendar year VerDate Aug<31>2005 17:00 Jul 27, 2007 Jkt 211001 2006. Requests and supporting documentation should be mailed to USDA, FSA, DAFO, Attention: Rick Pinkston, PO Box 23103, Washington, DC 20026–3103. The sign-up period will be from September 4, 2007, until November 30, 2007. Producer and importer forms shall only be counted if received by USDA during the stated sign-up period. Section 8(c)2 of the Act provides that if USDA determines, based on the results of the sign-up, that 10 percent or more of the total number of eligible producers and importers that voted in the most recent 1991 referendum (i.e., 4,622) request a continuance referendum on the 1991 amendments, a referendum will be held within 12 months after the end of the sign-up period. In counting such requests, however, not more than 20 percent may be from producers from any one state or from importers of cotton. For example, when counting the requests, the AMS Cotton Program would determine the total number of valid requests from all cotton-producing states and from importers. Not more than 20 percent of the total requests will be counted from any one state or from importers toward reaching the 10 percent for 4,622 total signatures required to call for a referendum. If USDA determines that 10 percent or more of the number of producers and importers who voted in the most recent referendum favor a continuance referendum. A referendum will be held. This proposed rule would amend the procedures for the conduct of the current sign-up period. The current rules and regulations provide for sections on definitions, supervision of the sign-up period, eligibility, participation in the sign-up period, counting requests, reporting results and instructions and forms. In section 1205.18 the term ‘‘Producer’’ is further defined to ensure that all producers that planted cotton during 2006 will be eligible to participate in the sign-up period. In sections 1205.20, 1205.26, and 1205.27 ‘‘calendar year 2001’’ would change to ‘‘calendar year 2006.’’ In sections 1205.27, 1205.28, and 1205.29 sign-up period conduct dates, FSA reporting dates, and mailing addresses have been updated. A 10-day comment period is determined to be appropriate because these proposed eligibility and participation requirements are substantially the same as the eligibility and participation requirements that were used in previous referenda and a sign-up period; participation is voluntary; and this rule, if adopted, PO 00000 Frm 00002 Fmt 4702 Sfmt 4702 41461 should be made effective as soon as possible in order to best reflect applicable time frames in the Act. List of Subjects in 7 CFR Part 1205 Advertising, Agricultural research, Cotton, Marketing agreements, Reporting and recordkeeping requirements. For the reasons set forth in the preamble, 7 CFR part 1205 is proposed to be amended as follows: PART 1205—COTTON RESEARCH AND PROMOTION 1. The authority citation part 1205 continues to read as follows: Authority: 7 U.S.C. 2101–2118. 2. Section 1205.20 is revised to read as follows: § 1205.20 Representative period. The term representative period means the 2006 calendar year. 3. In § 1205.26, paragraphs (a)(1) and (a)(2)are revised as follows: § 1205.26 Eligibility. * * * * * (a) * * * (1) Any person who was engaged in the production of Upland cotton during calendar year 2006; and (2) Any person who was an importer of Upland cotton and imported Upland cotton in excess of the value of $2.00 per line item entry during calendar year 2006. * * * * * 4. Section 1205.27 is revised to read as follows: § 1205.27 period. Participation in the sign-up The sign-up period will be from September 4, 2007, through November 30, 2007. Those persons who favor the conduct of a continuance referendum and who wish to request that USDA conduct such a referendum may do so by submitting such request in accordance with this section. All requests must be received by the appropriate USDA office by November 30, 2007. (a) Before the sign-up period begins, FSA shall establish a list of known, eligible, Upland cotton producers in the county that it serves during the representative period, and AMS shall also establish a list of known, eligible Upland cotton importers. (b) Before the start of the sign-up period, AMS shall mail a request form to each known, eligible, cotton importer. Importers who wish to request a referendum and who do not receive a request form in the mail by September E:\FR\FM\30JYP1.SGM 30JYP1 rwilkins on PROD1PC63 with PROPOSALS 41462 Federal Register / Vol. 72, No. 145 / Monday, July 30, 2007 / Proposed Rules 4, 2007, may participate in the sign-up period by submitting a signed, written request for a continuance referendum, along with a copy of a U.S. Customs and Border Protection form 7501 showing payment of a cotton assessment for calendar year 2006. Importers must submit their requests and supporting documents to USDA, FSA, DAFO, Attention: Rick Pinkston, P.O. Box 23103, Washington, DC 20026–3103. All requests and supporting documents must be received by November 30, 2007. (c) Each person on the county FSA office lists may participate in the signup period. Eligible producers must date and sign their name on the ‘‘County FSA Office Sign-up Sheet.’’ A person whose name does not appear on the county FSA office list may participate in the sign-up period. Such person must be identified on FSA–578 during the representative period or provide documentation that demonstrates that the person was a cotton producer during the representative period. Cotton producers not listed on the FSA–578 shall submit at least one sales receipt for cotton they planted during the representative period. Cotton producers must make requests to the county FSA office where the producer’s farm is located. If the producer’s land is in more than one county, the producer shall make request at the county office where FSA administratively maintains and processes the producer’s farm records. It is the responsibility of the person to provide the information needed by the county FSA office to determine eligibility. It is not the responsibility of the county FSA office to obtain this information. If any person whose name does not appear on the county FSA office list fails to provide at least one sales receipt for the cotton they produced during the representative period, the county FSA office shall determine that such person is ineligible to participate in the sign-up period, and shall note ‘‘ineligible’’ in the remarks section next to the person’s name on the county FSA office sign-up sheet. In lieu of personally appearing at a county FSA office, eligible producers may request a sign-up form from the county FSA office where the producer’s farm is located. If the producer’s land is in more than one county, the producer shall make the request for the sign-up form at the county office where FSA administratively maintains and processes the producer’s farm records. Such request must be accompanied by a copy of at least one sales receipt for cotton they produced during the representative period. The appropriate FSA office must receive all completed VerDate Aug<31>2005 17:00 Jul 27, 2007 Jkt 211001 forms and supporting documentation by October 31, 2007. 7. In § 1205.28, the first sentence is revised to read as follows: § 1205.28 Counting. County FSA offices and FSA, Deputy Administrator for Field Operations (DAFO), shall begin counting requests no later than November 1, 2007. * * * 8. Section 1205.29 is revised to read as follows: § 1205.29 Reporting results. (a) Each county FSA office shall prepare and transmit to the state FSA office, by December 7, 2007, a written report of the number of eligible producers who requested the conduct of a referendum, and the number of ineligible persons who made requests. (b) DAFO shall prepare, by December 7, 2007, a written report of the number of eligible importers who requested the conduct of a referendum, and the number of ineligible persons who made requests. (c) Each State FSA office shall, by December 7, 2007, forward all county reports to DAFO. By December 14, 2007, DAFO shall forward its report of the total number of eligible producers and importers that requested a continuance referendum, through the sign-up period, to the Deputy Administrator, Cotton Program, AMS, Stop 0224, 1400 Independence Ave., SW., Washington, DC 20250–0224. Dated: July 23, 2007. Lloyd C. Day, Administrator, Agricultural Marketing Service. [FR Doc. E7–14608 Filed 7–27–07; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 3410–02–P DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION Federal Aviation Administration 14 CFR Part 39 [Docket No. FAA–2007–28811; Directorate Identifier 2006–NM–246–AD] RIN 2120–AA64 Airworthiness Directives; Boeing Model 707 Airplanes and Model 720 and 720B Series Airplanes Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), Department of Transportation (DOT). ACTION: Notice of proposed rulemaking (NPRM). AGENCY: SUMMARY: The FAA proposes to adopt a new airworthiness directive (AD) for all Boeing Model 707 airplanes and Model PO 00000 Frm 00003 Fmt 4702 Sfmt 4702 720 and 720B series airplanes. This proposed AD would require identifying the material used in the elevator hinge support fittings of the horizontal stabilizer trailing edge, doing repetitive detailed inspections for cracking of the fittings and corrective actions if necessary, and doing an eventual terminating action. This proposed AD results from a report that stress corrosion cracking of the elevator hinge support fittings has been discovered on several Model 707 airplanes. We are proposing this AD to prevent cracking of the elevator hinge support fittings, which could reduce the elevator support stiffness and lead to in-flight airframe vibration, consequent damage to the elevator and horizontal stabilizer, and reduced controllability of the airplane. DATES: We must receive comments on this proposed AD by September 13, 2007. ADDRESSES: Use one of the following addresses to submit comments on this proposed AD. • DOT Docket Web site: Go to https://dms.dot.gov and follow the instructions for sending your comments electronically. • Government-wide rulemaking Web site: Go to https://www.regulations.gov and follow the instructions for sending your comments electronically. • Mail: U.S. Department of Transportation, Docket Operations, M– 30, West Building Ground Floor, Room W12–140, 1200 New Jersey Avenue, SE., Washington, DC 20590. • Fax: (202) 493–2251. • Hand Delivery: Room W12–140 on the ground floor of the West Building, 1200 New Jersey Avenue, SE., Washington, DC, between 9 a.m. and 5 p.m., Monday through Friday, except Federal holidays. Contact Boeing Commercial Airplanes, P.O. Box 3707, Seattle, Washington 98124–2207, for the service information identified in this proposed AD. FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Duong Tran, Aerospace Engineer, Airframe Branch, ANM–120S, FAA, Seattle Aircraft Certification Office, 1601 Lind Avenue, SW., Renton, Washington 98057–3356; telephone (425) 917–6452; fax (425) 917–6590. SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: Comments Invited We invite you to submit any relevant written data, views, or arguments regarding this proposed AD. Send your comments to an address listed in the ADDRESSES section. Include the docket number ‘‘FAA–2007–28811; Directorate Identifier 2006–NM–246–AD’’ at the E:\FR\FM\30JYP1.SGM 30JYP1

Agencies

[Federal Register Volume 72, Number 145 (Monday, July 30, 2007)]
[Proposed Rules]
[Pages 41460-41462]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Printing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: E7-14608]


========================================================================
Proposed Rules
                                                Federal Register
________________________________________________________________________

This section of the FEDERAL REGISTER contains notices to the public of 
the proposed issuance of rules and regulations. The purpose of these 
notices is to give interested persons an opportunity to participate in 
the rule making prior to the adoption of the final rules.

========================================================================


Federal Register / Vol. 72, No. 145 / Monday, July 30, 2007 / 
Proposed Rules

[[Page 41460]]


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DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE

Agricultural Marketing Service

7 CFR Part 1205

[Docket No. AMS-CN-07-0094; CN-07-006]


Cotton Research and Promotion Program: Procedures for Conduct of 
Sign-Up Period

AGENCY: Agricultural Marketing Service.

ACTION: Proposed rule.

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

SUMMARY: This proposed rule would amend the rules and regulations 
regarding the procedures for the conduct of a sign-up period for 
eligible cotton producers and importers to request a continuance 
referendum on the 1991 amendments to the Cotton Research and Promotion 
Order (Order) provided for in the Cotton Research and Promotion Act 
(Act) amendments of 1990. The amendments would update various dates, 
name changes, addresses, and make other administrative changes.

DATES: Comments must be received on or before August 9, 2007.

ADDRESSES: Interested persons are invited to submit written comments 
concerning this proposed rule to Shethir M. Riva, Chief, Research and 
Promotion Staff, Cotton Program, AMS, USDA, Stop 0224, 1400 
Independence Ave., SW., Room 2639-S, Washington, DC 20250-0224. 
Comments should be submitted in triplicate. Comments may also be 
submitted electronically through www.regulations.gov. All comments 
should reference the docket number and the date and page number of this 
issue of the Federal Register. All comments received will be made 
available for public inspection at Cotton Program, AMS, USDA, Stop 
0224, 1400 Independence Ave., SW., Room 2639-S, Washington, DC 20250-
0224 during regular business hours.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Shethir M. Riva, Chief, Research and 
Promotion Staff, Cotton Program, AMS, USDA, Stop 0224, 1400 
Independence Ave., SW., Room 2639-S, Washington, DC 20250-0224, 
telephone (202) 720-6603, facsimile (202) 690-1718, or e-mail at 
Shethir.Riva@usda.gov.

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

Executive Order 12866

    The Office of Management and Budget has waived the review process 
required by Executive Order 12866 for this action.

Executive Order 12988

    This rule has been reviewed under Executive Order 12988, Civil 
Justice Reform. It is not intended to have retroactive effect. This 
rule would not preempt any State or local laws, regulations, or 
policies, unless they present an irreconcilable conflict with this 
rule.
    The Cotton Research and Promotion Act (7 U.S.C. 2101-2118) provides 
that administrative proceedings must be exhausted before parties may 
file suit in court. Under Section 12 of the Act, any person subject to 
an order may file with USDA a petition stating that the order, any 
provision of the order, or any obligation imposed in connection with 
the order is not in accordance with law and requesting a modification 
of the order 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 the person is an inhabitant, 
or has his or her principal place of business, has jurisdiction to 
review the USDA's ruling, provided a complaint is filed within 20 days 
from the date of the entry of ruling.

Regulatory Flexibility Act

    Pursuant to requirements set forth in the Regulatory Flexibility 
Act (RFA) [5 U.S.C. 601 et seq.], the Agricultural Marketing Service 
has considered the economic effect of this action on small entities and 
has determined that its implementation will not have a significant 
economic impact on a substantial number of small entities.
    There are currently approximately 19,000 producers, and 
approximately 14,000 importers that are subject to the order. The 
majority of these producers and importers are small businesses under 
the criteria established by the Small Business Administration.
    Only those eligible persons who are in favor of conducting a 
referendum would need to participate in the sign-up period. Of the 
46,220 total valid ballots received in the 1991 referendum, 27,879, or 
60 percent, favored the amendments to the Order, and 18,341, or 40 
percent, opposed the amendments to the Order. This proposed rule would 
provide those persons who are not in favor of the continuance of the 
Order amendments an opportunity to request a continuance referendum.
    The eligibility and participation requirements for producers and 
importers are substantially the same as the rules that established the 
eligibility and participation requirements for the 1991 referendum, and 
for the 1997 and 2001 sign-up period. The 1997 and 2001 sign-ups did 
not generate the required number of signatures to hold another 
referendum. The amendments proposed in this action would update various 
dates, name changes, addresses, and make other miscellaneous changes.
    The proposed sign-up procedures would not impose a substantial 
burden or have a significant impact on persons subject to the Order, 
because participation is not mandatory, not all persons subject to the 
Order are expected to participate, and USDA will determine producer and 
importer eligibility. The information collection requirements under the 
Paperwork Reduction Act are minimal.

Paperwork Reduction Act

    The information collections proposed by this rule will be carried 
out under the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) Control Number 
0581-0093. This rule will not add to the overall burden currently 
approved by OMB and assigned OMB Control Number 0581-0093 under the 
provisions of the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995 (44 U.S.C. Chapter 
35). This OMB Control Number is referenced in Section 1205.541 of the 
regulations.

Background

    The 1991 amendments to the Cotton Research and Promotion Order (7 
CFR 1205 et seq.) were implemented following the July 1991 referendum. 
The amendments were provided for in the Cotton Research and Promotion 
Act (7 U.S.C. 2101-2118) amendments of 1990. These amendments provided 
for: (1) Importer representation on the Cotton Board by an appropriate 
number of persons, to be determined by USDA, who import cotton or 
cotton products

[[Page 41461]]

into the U.S., and whom USDA selects from nominations submitted by 
importer organizations certified by USDA; (2) assessments levied on 
imported cotton and cotton products at a rate determined in the same 
manner as for U.S. cotton; (3) increasing the amount USDA can be 
reimbursed for the conduct of a referendum from $200,000 to $300,000; 
(4) reimbursing government agencies that assist in administering the 
collection of assessments on imported cotton and cotton products; and 
(5) terminating the right of producers to demand a refund of 
assessments.
    On March 6, 2007, USDA issued a determination based on its review, 
(72 FR 9918), not to conduct a referendum regarding the 1991 amendments 
to the Order. However, the Act provides that USDA shall nevertheless 
conduct a referendum at the request of 10 percent or more of the total 
number of eligible producers and importers that voted in the most 
recent referendum. The Act provides for a sign-up period during which 
eligible cotton producers and importers may request that USDA conduct a 
referendum on continuation of the 1991 amendments to the Order. 
Accordingly, USDA will provide all eligible Upland cotton producers and 
importers an opportunity to request a continuance referendum regarding 
the 1991 amendments to the Order.
    The sign-up period will be provided for all eligible producers and 
importers. Eligible cotton producers would be provided the opportunity 
to sign-up to request a continuance referendum in person at the county 
FSA office where their farm is located. If the producer's land is in 
more than one county, the producer shall sign-up at the county office 
where FSA administratively maintains and processes the producer's farm 
records. Producers who choose not to visit the county FSA office in 
person may request a sign-up form in the mail from the same office.
    USDA would mail sign-up information, including a written request 
form, to all known, eligible cotton importers. Importers who favor the 
conduct of a continuance referendum would return their signed request 
forms to USDA, FSA, DAFO, Attention: Rick Pinkston, PO Box 23103, 
Washington, DC 20026-3103.
    Importers who do not receive a request form in the mail by 
September 4, 2007, and who meet the eligibility requirements to 
participate in the sign-up, may submit a written, signed request for a 
continuance referendum. Such request must be accompanied by a copy of 
the U.S. Customs and Border Protection Form 7501 showing payment of a 
cotton assessment for calendar year 2006. Requests and supporting 
documentation should be mailed to USDA, FSA, DAFO, Attention: Rick 
Pinkston, PO Box 23103, Washington, DC 20026-3103.
    The sign-up period will be from September 4, 2007, until November 
30, 2007. Producer and importer forms shall only be counted if received 
by USDA during the stated sign-up period.
    Section 8(c)2 of the Act provides that if USDA determines, based on 
the results of the sign-up, that 10 percent or more of the total number 
of eligible producers and importers that voted in the most recent 1991 
referendum (i.e., 4,622) request a continuance referendum on the 1991 
amendments, a referendum will be held within 12 months after the end of 
the sign-up period. In counting such requests, however, not more than 
20 percent may be from producers from any one state or from importers 
of cotton. For example, when counting the requests, the AMS Cotton 
Program would determine the total number of valid requests from all 
cotton-producing states and from importers. Not more than 20 percent of 
the total requests will be counted from any one state or from importers 
toward reaching the 10 percent for 4,622 total signatures required to 
call for a referendum. If USDA determines that 10 percent or more of 
the number of producers and importers who voted in the most recent 
referendum favor a continuance referendum. A referendum will be held.
    This proposed rule would amend the procedures for the conduct of 
the current sign-up period. The current rules and regulations provide 
for sections on definitions, supervision of the sign-up period, 
eligibility, participation in the sign-up period, counting requests, 
reporting results and instructions and forms.
    In section 1205.18 the term ``Producer'' is further defined to 
ensure that all producers that planted cotton during 2006 will be 
eligible to participate in the sign-up period. In sections 1205.20, 
1205.26, and 1205.27 ``calendar year 2001'' would change to ``calendar 
year 2006.'' In sections 1205.27, 1205.28, and 1205.29 sign-up period 
conduct dates, FSA reporting dates, and mailing addresses have been 
updated.
    A 10-day comment period is determined to be appropriate because 
these proposed eligibility and participation requirements are 
substantially the same as the eligibility and participation 
requirements that were used in previous referenda and a sign-up period; 
participation is voluntary; and this rule, if adopted, should be made 
effective as soon as possible in order to best reflect applicable time 
frames in the Act.

List of Subjects in 7 CFR Part 1205

    Advertising, Agricultural research, Cotton, Marketing agreements, 
Reporting and recordkeeping requirements.
    For the reasons set forth in the preamble, 7 CFR part 1205 is 
proposed to be amended as follows:

PART 1205--COTTON RESEARCH AND PROMOTION

    1. The authority citation part 1205 continues to read as follows:

    Authority: 7 U.S.C. 2101-2118.

    2. Section 1205.20 is revised to read as follows:


Sec.  1205.20  Representative period.

    The term representative period means the 2006 calendar year.
    3. In Sec.  1205.26, paragraphs (a)(1) and (a)(2)are revised as 
follows:


Sec.  1205.26  Eligibility.

* * * * *
    (a) * * *
    (1) Any person who was engaged in the production of Upland cotton 
during calendar year 2006; and
    (2) Any person who was an importer of Upland cotton and imported 
Upland cotton in excess of the value of $2.00 per line item entry 
during calendar year 2006.
* * * * *
    4. Section 1205.27 is revised to read as follows:


Sec.  1205.27  Participation in the sign-up period.

    The sign-up period will be from September 4, 2007, through November 
30, 2007. Those persons who favor the conduct of a continuance 
referendum and who wish to request that USDA conduct such a referendum 
may do so by submitting such request in accordance with this section. 
All requests must be received by the appropriate USDA office by 
November 30, 2007.
    (a) Before the sign-up period begins, FSA shall establish a list of 
known, eligible, Upland cotton producers in the county that it serves 
during the representative period, and AMS shall also establish a list 
of known, eligible Upland cotton importers.
    (b) Before the start of the sign-up period, AMS shall mail a 
request form to each known, eligible, cotton importer. Importers who 
wish to request a referendum and who do not receive a request form in 
the mail by September

[[Page 41462]]

4, 2007, may participate in the sign-up period by submitting a signed, 
written request for a continuance referendum, along with a copy of a 
U.S. Customs and Border Protection form 7501 showing payment of a 
cotton assessment for calendar year 2006. Importers must submit their 
requests and supporting documents to USDA, FSA, DAFO, Attention: Rick 
Pinkston, P.O. Box 23103, Washington, DC 20026-3103. All requests and 
supporting documents must be received by November 30, 2007.
    (c) Each person on the county FSA office lists may participate in 
the sign-up period. Eligible producers must date and sign their name on 
the ``County FSA Office Sign-up Sheet.'' A person whose name does not 
appear on the county FSA office list may participate in the sign-up 
period. Such person must be identified on FSA-578 during the 
representative period or provide documentation that demonstrates that 
the person was a cotton producer during the representative period. 
Cotton producers not listed on the FSA-578 shall submit at least one 
sales receipt for cotton they planted during the representative period. 
Cotton producers must make requests to the county FSA office where the 
producer's farm is located. If the producer's land is in more than one 
county, the producer shall make request at the county office where FSA 
administratively maintains and processes the producer's farm records. 
It is the responsibility of the person to provide the information 
needed by the county FSA office to determine eligibility. It is not the 
responsibility of the county FSA office to obtain this information. If 
any person whose name does not appear on the county FSA office list 
fails to provide at least one sales receipt for the cotton they 
produced during the representative period, the county FSA office shall 
determine that such person is ineligible to participate in the sign-up 
period, and shall note ``ineligible'' in the remarks section next to 
the person's name on the county FSA office sign-up sheet. In lieu of 
personally appearing at a county FSA office, eligible producers may 
request a sign-up form from the county FSA office where the producer's 
farm is located. If the producer's land is in more than one county, the 
producer shall make the request for the sign-up form at the county 
office where FSA administratively maintains and processes the 
producer's farm records. Such request must be accompanied by a copy of 
at least one sales receipt for cotton they produced during the 
representative period. The appropriate FSA office must receive all 
completed forms and supporting documentation by October 31, 2007.
    7. In Sec.  1205.28, the first sentence is revised to read as 
follows:


Sec.  1205.28  Counting.

    County FSA offices and FSA, Deputy Administrator for Field 
Operations (DAFO), shall begin counting requests no later than November 
1, 2007. * * *
    8. Section 1205.29 is revised to read as follows:


Sec.  1205.29  Reporting results.

    (a) Each county FSA office shall prepare and transmit to the state 
FSA office, by December 7, 2007, a written report of the number of 
eligible producers who requested the conduct of a referendum, and the 
number of ineligible persons who made requests.
    (b) DAFO shall prepare, by December 7, 2007, a written report of 
the number of eligible importers who requested the conduct of a 
referendum, and the number of ineligible persons who made requests.
    (c) Each State FSA office shall, by December 7, 2007, forward all 
county reports to DAFO. By December 14, 2007, DAFO shall forward its 
report of the total number of eligible producers and importers that 
requested a continuance referendum, through the sign-up period, to the 
Deputy Administrator, Cotton Program, AMS, Stop 0224, 1400 Independence 
Ave., SW., Washington, DC 20250-0224.

    Dated: July 23, 2007.
Lloyd C. Day,
Administrator, Agricultural Marketing Service.
 [FR Doc. E7-14608 Filed 7-27-07; 8:45 am]
BILLING CODE 3410-02-P