Processed Raspberry Promotion, Research, and Information Order; Late Payment and Interest Charges on Past Due Assessments, 67103-67105 [2014-26677]

Download as PDF 67103 Proposed Rules Federal Register Vol. 79, No. 218 Wednesday, November 12, 2014 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 1208 [Document Number AMS–FV–14–0042] Processed Raspberry Promotion, Research, and Information Order; Late Payment and Interest Charges on Past Due Assessments Agricultural Marketing Service, USDA. ACTION: Proposed rule. AGENCY: This proposal invites comments on prescribing late payment and interest charges on past due assessments under the Processed Raspberry Promotion, Research, and Information Order (Order). The Order is administered by the National Processed Raspberry Council (Council) with oversight by the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA). Under the Order, assessments are collected from domestic producers and importers and used for research and promotion projects designed to maintain and expand the market for processed raspberries. This proposal would implement authority contained in the Order that allows the Council to collect late payment and interest charges on past due assessments. Three additional changes are proposed to reflect current practices and update the Order and regulations. This action would contribute to effective administration of the program. DATES: Comments must be received by December 12, 2014. ADDRESSES: Interested persons are invited to submit written comments concerning this proposal. Comments may be submitted on the Internet at: http://www.regulations.gov or to the Promotion and Economics Division, Fruit and Vegetable Program, AMS, USDA, 1400 Independence Avenue SW., Room 1406–S, Stop 0244, Washington, DC 20250–0244; facsimile: (202) 205–2800. All comments should reference the document number and the TKELLEY on DSK3SPTVN1PROD with PROPOSALS SUMMARY: VerDate Sep<11>2014 17:13 Nov 10, 2014 Jkt 235001 date and page number of this issue of the Federal Register and will be made available for public inspection, including name and address, if provided, in the above office during regular business hours or it can be viewed at http://www.regulations.gov. FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Tarun Harit, Program Management Specialist, Promotion and Economics Division, Fruit and Vegetable Program, AMS, USDA, 1400 Independence Avenue SW., Room 1406–S, Stop 0244, Washington, DC 20250–0244; telephone: (202) 720–9915; facsimile (202) 205– 2800; or electronic mail: Tarun.Harit@ ams.usda.gov. SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: This proposal is issued under the Order (7 CFR part 1208). The Order is authorized under the Commodity Promotion, Research, and Information Act of 1996 (1996 Act) (7 U.S.C. 7411–7425). Executive Order 12866 and Executive Order 13563 Executive Orders 12866 and 13563 direct agencies to assess all costs and benefits of available regulatory alternatives and, if regulation is necessary, to select regulatory approaches that maximize net benefits (including potential economic, environmental, public health and safety effects, distributive impacts and equity). Executive Order 13563 emphasizes the importance of quantifying both costs and benefits, reducing costs, harmonizing rules and promoting flexibility. This action has been designated as a ‘‘non-significant regulatory action’’ under section 3(f) of Executive Order 12866. Accordingly, the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) has waived the review process. Executive Order 13175 This action has been reviewed in accordance with the requirements of Executive Order 13175, Consultation and Coordination with Indian Tribal Governments. The review reveals that this regulation would not have substantial and direct effects on Tribal governments and would not have significant Tribal implications. Executive Order 12988 This proposal has been reviewed under Executive Order 12988, Civil Justice Reform. It is not intended to have retroactive effect. Section 524 of PO 00000 Frm 00001 Fmt 4702 Sfmt 4702 the 1996 Act (7 U.S.C. 7423) provides that it shall not affect or preempt any other Federal or State law authorizing promotion or research relating to an agricultural commodity. Under section 519 of the 1996 Act (7 U.S.C. 7418), a person subject to an order may file a written petition with USDA stating that an order, any provision of an order, or any obligation imposed in connection with an order, is not established in accordance with the law, and request a modification of an order or an exemption from an order. Any petition filed challenging an order, any provision of an order, or any obligation imposed in connection with an order, shall be filed within two years after the effective date of an order, provision, or obligation subject to challenge in the petition. The petitioner will have the opportunity for a hearing on the petition. Thereafter, USDA will issue a ruling on the petition. The 1996 Act provides that the district court of the United States for any district in which the petitioner resides or conducts business shall have the jurisdiction to review a final ruling on the petition, if the petitioner files a complaint for that purpose not later than 20 days after the date of the entry of USDA’s final ruling. Background This proposal invites comments on prescribing late payment and interest charges on past due assessments under the Order. The Order is administered by the Council with oversight by USDA. Under the Order, assessments are collected from domestic producers and importers and used for research and promotion projects designed to maintain and expand markets for processed raspberries. Processed raspberries include raspberries that have been frozen, dried, pureed, made into juice, or altered by mechanical processes. This proposal would implement authority contained in the Order and the 1996 Act that allows the Council to collect late payment and interest charges on past due assessments. This action was unanimously recommended by the Council and would contribute to effective administration of the program. Section 1208.52(a) of the Order specifies that the funds to cover the Council’s expenses shall be paid from assessments on producers and importers, donations from persons not subject to assessments, and from other E:\FR\FM\12NOP1.SGM 12NOP1 67104 Federal Register / Vol. 79, No. 218 / Wednesday, November 12, 2014 / Proposed Rules TKELLEY on DSK3SPTVN1PROD with PROPOSALS funds available to the Council. Paragraph (b) specifies that the collection of assessments on domestic processed raspberries is the responsibility of the first receiving handler of the raspberries for processing. Section 1208.52 (6)(e) specifies that ‘‘a late payment charge shall be imposed on any handler or importer who fails to remit to the Council, the total amount for which any such first handler or importer is liable on or before the due date established by the Council. In addition to the late payment charge, an interest charge shall be imposed on the outstanding amount for which the first handler or importer is liable. The rate of interest shall be prescribed in regulations issued by the Secretary.’’ The Order was implemented in May 2012. Assessment collection began in September 2012. Domestic assessments are due to the Council once annually by October 31. Import assessments are collected monthly by the U.S. Customs and Border Protection (Customs). If Customs does not collect the assessment, the importer must pay the assessment directly to the Council. Entities that produce less than 20,000 pounds of raspberries for processing annually or import less than 20,000 pounds of processed raspberries annually are exempt from assessment. Assessment funds are used by the Council for activities designed to benefit all industry members. Thus, it is important that all assessed entities pay their assessments in a timely manner. Entities who fail to pay their assessments on time would be able to reap the benefits of Council programs at the expense of others. In addition, they would be able to utilize funds for their own use that should otherwise be paid to the Council to finance Council programs. Council Recommendation Thus, the Council met on January 15, 2014, and unanimously recommended specifying rates of late payment charges and interest on past due assessments in the Order’s regulations. Specifically, the Council recommended that a late payment charge be imposed on any handler or importer who fails to make timely remittance to the Council of the total assessments for which the handler or importer is liable. The late payment would be imposed on any assessments not received within 30 calendar days of the date they are due. This would be a one-time late payment charge equal to 10 percent of the assessments due before interest charges have accrued. The Council also recommended that 1 percent per month interest on the VerDate Sep<11>2014 17:13 Nov 10, 2014 Jkt 235001 outstanding balance, including any late payment and accrued interest, be added to any accounts for which payment has not been received within 30 calendar days after the date assessments are due. Interest would continue to accrue monthly until the unpaid balance was paid to the Council. This action would help facilitate program administration by providing an incentive for entities to remit assessments in a timely manner, with the intent of creating a fair and equitable process among all assessed entities. Accordingly, a new subpart C would be added to the Order for rules and regulations, and a new § 1208.520 would be added to subpart C. This proposal would also make three additional changes to the Order. This proposed rule would revise the terms crop and fiscal years as defined in §§ 1208.3 and 1208.7, respectively. The crop and fiscal years are changed in the Order from the 12-month period April 1 through March 31 to October 1 through September 30. The new time frames help facilitate program operations because domestic assessments are due by October 31, so those funds can be used to support current year activities. Revising the terms would bring the Order in line with current practices. This proposal would also change the OMB control numbers in §§ 1208.78 and 1208.108. In § 1208.78, the OMB control number 0581–0257 would be omitted because it is no longer relevant. In §§ 1208.108, the OMB control number would be changed from 0581–NEW to 0581–0093, the control number assigned by the OMB. Initial Regulatory Flexibility Act Analysis In accordance with the Regulatory Flexibility Act (RFA) (5 U.S.C. 601– 612), AMS is required to examine the impact of the proposed rule on small entities. Accordingly, AMS has considered the economic impact of this action on small entities. The purpose of the RFA is to fit regulatory actions to the scale of businesses subject to such actions so that small businesses will not be disproportionately burdened. The Small Business Administration defines, in 13 CFR part 121, small agricultural producers as those having annual receipts of no more than $750,000 and small agricultural service firms (first handlers and importers) as those having annual receipts of no more than $7.0 million. According to the Council, it is estimated that there are 160 producers of raspberries for processing and 30 first handlers of processed raspberries in the PO 00000 Frm 00002 Fmt 4702 Sfmt 4702 United States. Dividing the processed raspberry crop value for 2013 reported by the National Agricultural Statistics Service (NASS) of $60,883,000 1 by the number of producers yields an average, annual producer revenue of $380,520. It is estimated that in 2013, 75 percent of the first handlers shipped under $7.0 million worth of processed raspberries. Likewise, based on Customs data, it is estimated there are 140 importers of processed raspberries. Using 2013 Customs data, nearly all importers, or 99 percent, import less than $7.0 million worth of processed raspberries annually. Thus, the majority of domestic producers, first handlers and importers of processed raspberries would be considered small entities. Regarding the value of the commodity, as mentioned above, based on 2013 NASS data, the value of the domestic processed raspberry crop was about $61 million. According to Customs data, the value of 2013 imports was about $65 million. This proposal invites comments on prescribing late payment and interest charges on past due assessments under the Order. The Order is administered by the Council with oversight by USDA. Under the Order, assessments are collected from domestic producers of raspberries for processing and importers of processed raspberries. Processed raspberries include raspberries that have been frozen, dried, pureed, made into juice, or altered by mechanical processes. This proposed rule would add a new § 1208.520 that would specify a late payment charge of 10 percent of the assessments due and interest at a rate of 1 percent per month on the outstanding balance, including any late payment and accrued interest. This section would be included in a new Subpart C—Rules and Regulations. This action was unanimously recommended by the Council and is authorized under section 1208.52(e) of the Order and section 517(e) of the 1996 Act. Regarding the economic impact of this proposed rule on affected entities, this action would impose no costs on handlers and importers who pay their assessments on time. It would merely provide an incentive for entities to remit their assessments in a timely manner. For all entities who are delinquent in paying assessments, both large and small, the charges would be applied the same. As for the impact on the industry as a whole, this action would help facilitate program administration by 1 Noncitrus Fruits and Nuts 2013 Summary, July 2014, USDA, National Agricultural Statistics Service, p. 37. E:\FR\FM\12NOP1.SGM 12NOP1 TKELLEY on DSK3SPTVN1PROD with PROPOSALS Federal Register / Vol. 79, No. 218 / Wednesday, November 12, 2014 / Proposed Rules providing an incentive for entities to remit their assessments in a timely manner, with the intent of creating a fair and equitable process among all assessed entities. Additionally, as previously mentioned, the Order provides for an exemption for entities that produce or import less than 20,000 pounds of processed raspberries annually. About 140 producers of raspberries for processing and 80 importers of processed raspberries pay assessments under the Order. Regarding alternatives, one option to the proposed action would be to maintain the status quo and not prescribe late payment and interest charges for past due assessments. However, the Council determined that implementing such charges would help facilitate program administration by encouraging entities to pay their assessments in a timely manner. The Council reviewed rates of late payment and interest charges prescribed in other research and promotion programs and concluded that a 10 percent late payment charge and interest at a rate of 1 percent per month on the outstanding balance would be appropriate. In accordance with the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995 (44 U.S.C. Chapter 35), the information collection and recordkeeping requirements that are imposed by the Order have been approved under OMB control number 0581–0093. This proposed rule would not result in a change to the information collection and recordkeeping requirements previously approved and would impose no additional reporting and recordkeeping burden on domestic producers, first handlers, and importers of processed raspberries. As with all Federal promotion programs, reports and forms are periodically reviewed to reduce information requirements and duplication by industry and public sector agencies. Finally, USDA has not identified any relevant Federal rules that duplicate, overlap, or conflict with this proposed rule. 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. Regarding outreach efforts, the Council met on January 15, 2014, and unanimously made its recommendation. All of the Council’s meetings, including meetings held via teleconference, are open to the public and interested persons are invited to participate and express their views. VerDate Sep<11>2014 17:13 Nov 10, 2014 Jkt 235001 We have performed this initial RFA regarding the impact of this proposed action on small entities and we invite comments concerning potential effects of this action on small businesses. While this proposed rule set forth below has not received the approval of USDA, it has been determined that it is consistent with and would effectuate the purposes of the 1996 Act. A 30-day comment period is provided to allow interested persons to respond to this proposal. Thirty-days is deemed appropriate because the Council would like to implement this incentive as soon as possible to facilitate the collection of assessments on a timely basis. All written comments received in response to this proposed rule by the date specified will be considered prior to finalizing this action. List of Subjects in 7 CFR Part 1208 Administrative practice and procedure, Advertising, Consumer information, Marketing agreements, Raspberry promotion, Reporting and recordkeeping requirements. For the reasons set forth in the preamble, 7 CFR part 1208 is proposed to be amended as follows: PART 1208—PROCESSED RASPBERRY PROMOTION, RESEARCH, AND INFORMATION ORDER 1. The authority citation for 7 CFR part 1208 continues to read as follows: ■ Authority: 7 U.S.C. 7411–7425; 7 U.S.C. 7401. 2. Section 1208.3 is revised to read as follows: ■ § 1208.3 § 1208.108 67105 OMB control number. The control number assigned to the information collection requirement in this subpart by the Office of Management and Budget pursuant to the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995, 44 U.S.C. Chapter 35, is OMB control number 0581–0093. ■ 6. Subpart C—Rules and Regulations is added to read as follows: Subpart C—Rules and Regulations § 1208.520 Late payment and interest charges for past due assessments. (1) A late payment charge shall be imposed on any handler or importer who fails to make timely remittance to the Council of the total assessments for which such handler or importer is liable. The late payment will be imposed on any assessments not received within 30 calendar days of the date they are due. This one-time late payment charge shall be 10 percent of the assessments due before interest charges have accrued. (2) In addition to the late payment charge, 1 percent per month interest on the outstanding balance, including any late payment and accrued interest, will be added to any accounts for which payment has not been received by the Council within 30 calendar days after the date the assessments are due. Such interest will continue to accrue monthly until the outstanding balance is paid to the Council. Dated: November 5, 2014. Rex A. Barnes, Associate Administrator. [FR Doc. 2014–26677 Filed 11–10–14; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE P Crop year. Crop year means the 12-month period from October 1 through September 30 or such other period approved by the Secretary. ■ 3. Section 1208.7 is revised to read as follows: DEPARTMENT OF HEALTH AND HUMAN SERVICES § 1208.7 21 CFR Part 888 Fiscal period. Fiscal period means the 12-month period from October 1 through September 30 or such other period as approved by the Secretary. ■ 4. Section 1208.78 is revised to read as follows: § 1208.78 OMB control numbers. The control numbers assigned to the information collection requirements by the Office of Management and Budget pursuant to the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995, 44 U.S.C. Chapter 35, are OMB control number 0505–0001, and OMB control number 0581–0093. ■ 5. Section 1208.108 is revised to read as follows: PO 00000 Frm 00003 Fmt 4702 Sfmt 4702 Food and Drug Administration [Docket No. FDA–2014–N–1205] Orthopedic Devices; Reclassification of Thoracolumbosacral Rigid Pedicle Screw Systems; Classification and Effective Date of Requirement for Premarket Approval for Dynamic Stabilization Systems AGENCY: Food and Drug Administration, HHS. ACTION: Proposed order. The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) is proposing in this administrative order to reclassify rigid pedicle screw systems, a SUMMARY: E:\FR\FM\12NOP1.SGM 12NOP1

Agencies

[Federal Register Volume 79, Number 218 (Wednesday, November 12, 2014)]
[Proposed Rules]
[Pages 67103-67105]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Printing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 2014-26677]


========================================================================
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. 79, No. 218 / Wednesday, November 12, 2014 / 
Proposed Rules

[[Page 67103]]



DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE

Agricultural Marketing Service

7 CFR Part 1208

[Document Number AMS-FV-14-0042]


Processed Raspberry Promotion, Research, and Information Order; 
Late Payment and Interest Charges on Past Due Assessments

AGENCY: Agricultural Marketing Service, USDA.

ACTION: Proposed rule.

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

SUMMARY: This proposal invites comments on prescribing late payment and 
interest charges on past due assessments under the Processed Raspberry 
Promotion, Research, and Information Order (Order). The Order is 
administered by the National Processed Raspberry Council (Council) with 
oversight by the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA). Under the 
Order, assessments are collected from domestic producers and importers 
and used for research and promotion projects designed to maintain and 
expand the market for processed raspberries. This proposal would 
implement authority contained in the Order that allows the Council to 
collect late payment and interest charges on past due assessments. 
Three additional changes are proposed to reflect current practices and 
update the Order and regulations. This action would contribute to 
effective administration of the program.

DATES: Comments must be received by December 12, 2014.

ADDRESSES: Interested persons are invited to submit written comments 
concerning this proposal. Comments may be submitted on the Internet at: 
http://www.regulations.gov or to the Promotion and Economics Division, 
Fruit and Vegetable Program, AMS, USDA, 1400 Independence Avenue SW., 
Room 1406-S, Stop 0244, Washington, DC 20250-0244; facsimile: (202) 
205-2800. All comments should reference the document number and the 
date and page number of this issue of the Federal Register and will be 
made available for public inspection, including name and address, if 
provided, in the above office during regular business hours or it can 
be viewed at http://www.regulations.gov.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Tarun Harit, Program Management 
Specialist, Promotion and Economics Division, Fruit and Vegetable 
Program, AMS, USDA, 1400 Independence Avenue SW., Room 1406-S, Stop 
0244, Washington, DC 20250-0244; telephone: (202) 720-9915; facsimile 
(202) 205-2800; or electronic mail: Tarun.Harit@ams.usda.gov.

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: This proposal is issued under the Order (7 
CFR part 1208). The Order is authorized under the Commodity Promotion, 
Research, and Information Act of 1996 (1996 Act) (7 U.S.C. 7411-7425).

Executive Order 12866 and Executive Order 13563

    Executive Orders 12866 and 13563 direct agencies to assess all 
costs and benefits of available regulatory alternatives and, if 
regulation is necessary, to select regulatory approaches that maximize 
net benefits (including potential economic, environmental, public 
health and safety effects, distributive impacts and equity). Executive 
Order 13563 emphasizes the importance of quantifying both costs and 
benefits, reducing costs, harmonizing rules and promoting flexibility. 
This action has been designated as a ``non-significant regulatory 
action'' under section 3(f) of Executive Order 12866. Accordingly, the 
Office of Management and Budget (OMB) has waived the review process.

Executive Order 13175

    This action has been reviewed in accordance with the requirements 
of Executive Order 13175, Consultation and Coordination with Indian 
Tribal Governments. The review reveals that this regulation would not 
have substantial and direct effects on Tribal governments and would not 
have significant Tribal implications.

Executive Order 12988

    This proposal has been reviewed under Executive Order 12988, Civil 
Justice Reform. It is not intended to have retroactive effect. Section 
524 of the 1996 Act (7 U.S.C. 7423) provides that it shall not affect 
or preempt any other Federal or State law authorizing promotion or 
research relating to an agricultural commodity.
    Under section 519 of the 1996 Act (7 U.S.C. 7418), a person subject 
to an order may file a written petition with USDA stating that an 
order, any provision of an order, or any obligation imposed in 
connection with an order, is not established in accordance with the 
law, and request a modification of an order or an exemption from an 
order. Any petition filed challenging an order, any provision of an 
order, or any obligation imposed in connection with an order, shall be 
filed within two years after the effective date of an order, provision, 
or obligation subject to challenge in the petition. The petitioner will 
have the opportunity for a hearing on the petition. Thereafter, USDA 
will issue a ruling on the petition. The 1996 Act provides that the 
district court of the United States for any district in which the 
petitioner resides or conducts business shall have the jurisdiction to 
review a final ruling on the petition, if the petitioner files a 
complaint for that purpose not later than 20 days after the date of the 
entry of USDA's final ruling.

Background

    This proposal invites comments on prescribing late payment and 
interest charges on past due assessments under the Order. The Order is 
administered by the Council with oversight by USDA. Under the Order, 
assessments are collected from domestic producers and importers and 
used for research and promotion projects designed to maintain and 
expand markets for processed raspberries. Processed raspberries include 
raspberries that have been frozen, dried, pureed, made into juice, or 
altered by mechanical processes. This proposal would implement 
authority contained in the Order and the 1996 Act that allows the 
Council to collect late payment and interest charges on past due 
assessments. This action was unanimously recommended by the Council and 
would contribute to effective administration of the program.
    Section 1208.52(a) of the Order specifies that the funds to cover 
the Council's expenses shall be paid from assessments on producers and 
importers, donations from persons not subject to assessments, and from 
other

[[Page 67104]]

funds available to the Council. Paragraph (b) specifies that the 
collection of assessments on domestic processed raspberries is the 
responsibility of the first receiving handler of the raspberries for 
processing. Section 1208.52 (6)(e) specifies that ``a late payment 
charge shall be imposed on any handler or importer who fails to remit 
to the Council, the total amount for which any such first handler or 
importer is liable on or before the due date established by the 
Council. In addition to the late payment charge, an interest charge 
shall be imposed on the outstanding amount for which the first handler 
or importer is liable. The rate of interest shall be prescribed in 
regulations issued by the Secretary.''
    The Order was implemented in May 2012. Assessment collection began 
in September 2012. Domestic assessments are due to the Council once 
annually by October 31. Import assessments are collected monthly by the 
U.S. Customs and Border Protection (Customs). If Customs does not 
collect the assessment, the importer must pay the assessment directly 
to the Council. Entities that produce less than 20,000 pounds of 
raspberries for processing annually or import less than 20,000 pounds 
of processed raspberries annually are exempt from assessment.
    Assessment funds are used by the Council for activities designed to 
benefit all industry members. Thus, it is important that all assessed 
entities pay their assessments in a timely manner. Entities who fail to 
pay their assessments on time would be able to reap the benefits of 
Council programs at the expense of others. In addition, they would be 
able to utilize funds for their own use that should otherwise be paid 
to the Council to finance Council programs.

Council Recommendation

    Thus, the Council met on January 15, 2014, and unanimously 
recommended specifying rates of late payment charges and interest on 
past due assessments in the Order's regulations. Specifically, the 
Council recommended that a late payment charge be imposed on any 
handler or importer who fails to make timely remittance to the Council 
of the total assessments for which the handler or importer is liable. 
The late payment would be imposed on any assessments not received 
within 30 calendar days of the date they are due. This would be a one-
time late payment charge equal to 10 percent of the assessments due 
before interest charges have accrued. The Council also recommended that 
1 percent per month interest on the outstanding balance, including any 
late payment and accrued interest, be added to any accounts for which 
payment has not been received within 30 calendar days after the date 
assessments are due. Interest would continue to accrue monthly until 
the unpaid balance was paid to the Council.
    This action would help facilitate program administration by 
providing an incentive for entities to remit assessments in a timely 
manner, with the intent of creating a fair and equitable process among 
all assessed entities. Accordingly, a new subpart C would be added to 
the Order for rules and regulations, and a new Sec.  1208.520 would be 
added to subpart C.
    This proposal would also make three additional changes to the 
Order. This proposed rule would revise the terms crop and fiscal years 
as defined in Sec. Sec.  1208.3 and 1208.7, respectively. The crop and 
fiscal years are changed in the Order from the 12-month period April 1 
through March 31 to October 1 through September 30. The new time frames 
help facilitate program operations because domestic assessments are due 
by October 31, so those funds can be used to support current year 
activities. Revising the terms would bring the Order in line with 
current practices.
    This proposal would also change the OMB control numbers in 
Sec. Sec.  1208.78 and 1208.108. In Sec.  1208.78, the OMB control 
number 0581-0257 would be omitted because it is no longer relevant. In 
Sec. Sec.  1208.108, the OMB control number would be changed from 0581-
NEW to 0581-0093, the control number assigned by the OMB.

Initial Regulatory Flexibility Act Analysis

    In accordance with the Regulatory Flexibility Act (RFA) (5 U.S.C. 
601-612), AMS is required to examine the impact of the proposed rule on 
small entities. Accordingly, AMS has considered the economic impact of 
this action on small entities.
    The purpose of the RFA is to fit regulatory actions to the scale of 
businesses subject to such actions so that small businesses will not be 
disproportionately burdened. The Small Business Administration defines, 
in 13 CFR part 121, small agricultural producers as those having annual 
receipts of no more than $750,000 and small agricultural service firms 
(first handlers and importers) as those having annual receipts of no 
more than $7.0 million.
    According to the Council, it is estimated that there are 160 
producers of raspberries for processing and 30 first handlers of 
processed raspberries in the United States. Dividing the processed 
raspberry crop value for 2013 reported by the National Agricultural 
Statistics Service (NASS) of $60,883,000 \1\ by the number of producers 
yields an average, annual producer revenue of $380,520. It is estimated 
that in 2013, 75 percent of the first handlers shipped under $7.0 
million worth of processed raspberries.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \1\ Noncitrus Fruits and Nuts 2013 Summary, July 2014, USDA, 
National Agricultural Statistics Service, p. 37.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    Likewise, based on Customs data, it is estimated there are 140 
importers of processed raspberries. Using 2013 Customs data, nearly all 
importers, or 99 percent, import less than $7.0 million worth of 
processed raspberries annually. Thus, the majority of domestic 
producers, first handlers and importers of processed raspberries would 
be considered small entities.
    Regarding the value of the commodity, as mentioned above, based on 
2013 NASS data, the value of the domestic processed raspberry crop was 
about $61 million. According to Customs data, the value of 2013 imports 
was about $65 million.
    This proposal invites comments on prescribing late payment and 
interest charges on past due assessments under the Order. The Order is 
administered by the Council with oversight by USDA. Under the Order, 
assessments are collected from domestic producers of raspberries for 
processing and importers of processed raspberries. Processed 
raspberries include raspberries that have been frozen, dried, pureed, 
made into juice, or altered by mechanical processes. This proposed rule 
would add a new Sec.  1208.520 that would specify a late payment charge 
of 10 percent of the assessments due and interest at a rate of 1 
percent per month on the outstanding balance, including any late 
payment and accrued interest. This section would be included in a new 
Subpart C--Rules and Regulations. This action was unanimously 
recommended by the Council and is authorized under section 1208.52(e) 
of the Order and section 517(e) of the 1996 Act.
    Regarding the economic impact of this proposed rule on affected 
entities, this action would impose no costs on handlers and importers 
who pay their assessments on time. It would merely provide an incentive 
for entities to remit their assessments in a timely manner. For all 
entities who are delinquent in paying assessments, both large and 
small, the charges would be applied the same. As for the impact on the 
industry as a whole, this action would help facilitate program 
administration by

[[Page 67105]]

providing an incentive for entities to remit their assessments in a 
timely manner, with the intent of creating a fair and equitable process 
among all assessed entities.
    Additionally, as previously mentioned, the Order provides for an 
exemption for entities that produce or import less than 20,000 pounds 
of processed raspberries annually. About 140 producers of raspberries 
for processing and 80 importers of processed raspberries pay 
assessments under the Order.
    Regarding alternatives, one option to the proposed action would be 
to maintain the status quo and not prescribe late payment and interest 
charges for past due assessments. However, the Council determined that 
implementing such charges would help facilitate program administration 
by encouraging entities to pay their assessments in a timely manner. 
The Council reviewed rates of late payment and interest charges 
prescribed in other research and promotion programs and concluded that 
a 10 percent late payment charge and interest at a rate of 1 percent 
per month on the outstanding balance would be appropriate.
    In accordance with the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995 (44 U.S.C. 
Chapter 35), the information collection and recordkeeping requirements 
that are imposed by the Order have been approved under OMB control 
number 0581-0093. This proposed rule would not result in a change to 
the information collection and recordkeeping requirements previously 
approved and would impose no additional reporting and recordkeeping 
burden on domestic producers, first handlers, and importers of 
processed raspberries.
    As with all Federal promotion programs, reports and forms are 
periodically reviewed to reduce information requirements and 
duplication by industry and public sector agencies. Finally, USDA has 
not identified any relevant Federal rules that duplicate, overlap, or 
conflict with this proposed rule.
    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.
    Regarding outreach efforts, the Council met on January 15, 2014, 
and unanimously made its recommendation. All of the Council's meetings, 
including meetings held via teleconference, are open to the public and 
interested persons are invited to participate and express their views.
    We have performed this initial RFA regarding the impact of this 
proposed action on small entities and we invite comments concerning 
potential effects of this action on small businesses.
    While this proposed rule set forth below has not received the 
approval of USDA, it has been determined that it is consistent with and 
would effectuate the purposes of the 1996 Act.
    A 30-day comment period is provided to allow interested persons to 
respond to this proposal. Thirty-days is deemed appropriate because the 
Council would like to implement this incentive as soon as possible to 
facilitate the collection of assessments on a timely basis. All written 
comments received in response to this proposed rule by the date 
specified will be considered prior to finalizing this action.

List of Subjects in 7 CFR Part 1208

    Administrative practice and procedure, Advertising, Consumer 
information, Marketing agreements, Raspberry promotion, Reporting and 
recordkeeping requirements.

    For the reasons set forth in the preamble, 7 CFR part 1208 is 
proposed to be amended as follows:

PART 1208--PROCESSED RASPBERRY PROMOTION, RESEARCH, AND INFORMATION 
ORDER

0
1. The authority citation for 7 CFR part 1208 continues to read as 
follows:

     Authority:  7 U.S.C. 7411-7425; 7 U.S.C. 7401.

0
2. Section 1208.3 is revised to read as follows:


Sec.  1208.3  Crop year.

    Crop year means the 12-month period from October 1 through 
September 30 or such other period approved by the Secretary.
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3. Section 1208.7 is revised to read as follows:


Sec.  1208.7  Fiscal period.

    Fiscal period means the 12-month period from October 1 through 
September 30 or such other period as approved by the Secretary.
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4. Section 1208.78 is revised to read as follows:


Sec.  1208.78  OMB control numbers.

    The control numbers assigned to the information collection 
requirements by the Office of Management and Budget pursuant to the 
Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995, 44 U.S.C. Chapter 35, are OMB control 
number 0505-0001, and OMB control number 0581-0093.
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5. Section 1208.108 is revised to read as follows:


Sec.  1208.108  OMB control number.

    The control number assigned to the information collection 
requirement in this subpart by the Office of Management and Budget 
pursuant to the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995, 44 U.S.C. Chapter 35, 
is OMB control number 0581-0093.
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6. Subpart C--Rules and Regulations is added to read as follows:

Subpart C--Rules and Regulations


Sec.  1208.520  Late payment and interest charges for past due 
assessments.

    (1) A late payment charge shall be imposed on any handler or 
importer who fails to make timely remittance to the Council of the 
total assessments for which such handler or importer is liable. The 
late payment will be imposed on any assessments not received within 30 
calendar days of the date they are due. This one-time late payment 
charge shall be 10 percent of the assessments due before interest 
charges have accrued.
    (2) In addition to the late payment charge, 1 percent per month 
interest on the outstanding balance, including any late payment and 
accrued interest, will be added to any accounts for which payment has 
not been received by the Council within 30 calendar days after the date 
the assessments are due. Such interest will continue to accrue monthly 
until the outstanding balance is paid to the Council.

    Dated: November 5, 2014.
Rex A. Barnes,
Associate Administrator.
[FR Doc. 2014-26677 Filed 11-10-14; 8:45 am]
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