2017 Rates Charged for AMS Services, 21502-21506 [2017-09350]

Download as PDF 21502 Notices Federal Register Vol. 82, No. 88 Tuesday, May 9, 2017 This section of the FEDERAL REGISTER contains documents other than rules or proposed rules that are applicable to the public. Notices of hearings and investigations, committee meetings, agency decisions and rulings, delegations of authority, filing of petitions and applications and agency statements of organization and functions are examples of documents appearing in this section. DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE Agricultural Marketing Service [Document No. AMS–LPS–16–0117] 2017 Rates Charged for AMS Services Agricultural Marketing Service, USDA. ACTION: Notice. AGENCY: The Agricultural Marketing Service (AMS) is announcing the 2017 rates it will charge for voluntary grading, inspection, certification, auditing and laboratory services for a variety of agricultural commodities including meat and poultry, fruits and vegetables, eggs, dairy products, and cotton and tobacco. The 2017 regular, overtime, holiday, and laboratory services rates will be applied at the beginning of the crop year, fiscal year or as required by law (June 1 for most cotton programs) depending on the commodity. Other starting dates are added to this notice based on cotton industry practices. This action establishes the rates for user-funded programs based on costs incurred by AMS. DATES: May 10, 2017. FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Sonia Jimenez, AMS, U.S. Department of Agriculture, Room 2095–S, 1400 Independence Ave. SW., Washington, DC 20250; telephone (202) 720–6766, fax (202) 205–5772; email sonia.jimenez@ams.usda.gov. SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: The Agricultural Marketing Act of 1946, as amended, (AMA) (7 U.S.C. 1621–1627), provides for the collection of fees to cover costs of various inspection, grading, certification or auditing services covering many agricultural commodities and products. The AMA also provides for the recovery of costs incurred in providing laboratory services. The Cotton Statistics and Estimates Act (7 U.S.C. 471–476) and mstockstill on DSK30JT082PROD with NOTICES SUMMARY: VerDate Sep<11>2014 18:19 May 08, 2017 Jkt 241001 the U.S. Cotton Standards Act (7 U.S.C. 51–65) provide for classification of cotton and development of cotton standards materials necessary for cotton classification. The Cotton Futures Act (7 U.S.C. 15b) provides for futures certification services and the Tobacco Inspection Act (7 U.S.C. 511–511s) provides for tobacco inspection and grading. These Acts also provide for the recovery of costs associated with these services. On November 13, 2014, the Department of Agriculture (Department) published in the Federal Register a final rule that established standardized formulas for calculating the fees charged by AMS user-funded programs (79 FR 67313). Every year since then, the Department has published in the Federal Register a notice announcing the rates for its user –funded programs. This notice announces the 2017 fee rates for voluntary grading, inspection, certification, auditing and laboratory services for a variety of agricultural commodities including meat and poultry, fruits and vegetables, eggs, dairy products, and cotton and tobacco on a per-hour rate and, in some instances, the equivalent per-unit cost. The per-unit cost is provided to facilitate understanding of the costs associated with the service to the industries that historically used unitcost basis for payment. The fee rates will be effective at the beginning of the fiscal year, crop year, or as required by specific laws (June 1 for most cotton programs). The cotton futures-related services effective date has been changed to August 1 to allow for cotton contracts to expire before starting a new fee rate. The rates reflect direct and indirect costs of providing services. Direct costs include the cost of salaries, employee benefits, and if applicable, travel and some operating costs. Indirect or overhead costs include the cost of Program and Agency activities supporting the services provided to the industry. The formula used to calculate these rates also includes operating reserve, which may add to or draw upon the existing operating reserves. These services include the grading, inspection or certification of quality factors in accordance with established U.S. Grade Standards; audits or accreditation according to International Organization for Standardization (ISO) standards and/or Hazard Analysis and PO 00000 Frm 00001 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 Critical Control Point (HACCP) principles; and other marketing claims. The quality grades serve as a basis for market prices and reflect the value of agricultural commodities to both producers and consumers. AMS’ grading and quality verification and certification, audit and accreditation, plant process and equipment verification, and laboratory approval services are voluntary tools paid for by the users on a fee-for-service basis. The agriculture industry can use these tools to promote and communicate the quality of agricultural commodities to consumers. Laboratory services are provided for analytic testing, including but not limited to chemical, microbiological, biomolecular, and physical analyses. AMS is required by statute to recover the costs associated with these services. As required by the Cotton Statistics and Estimates Act (7 U.S.C. 471–476), consultations regarding the establishment of the fee for cotton classification with U.S. cotton industry representatives are held in the beginning of the year when most industry stakeholder meetings take place. Representatives of all segments of the cotton industry, including producers, ginners, bale storage facility operators, merchants, cooperatives, and textile manufacturers were informed of the fees during various industrysponsored forums. Rates Calculations AMS calculated the rate for services, per hour per program employee, using the following formulas (a per-unit base is included for programs that charge for services on a per-unit basis): (1) Regular rate. The total AMS grading, inspection, certification, classification, audit, or laboratory service program personnel direct pay divided by direct hours for the previous year, which is then multiplied by the next year’s percentage of cost of living increase, plus the benefits rate, plus the operating rate, plus the allowance for bad debt rate. If applicable, travel expenses may also be added to the cost of providing the service. (2) Overtime rate. The total AMS grading, inspection, certification, classification, audit, or laboratory service program personnel direct pay divided by direct hours, which is then multiplied by the next year’s percentage of cost of living increase and then E:\FR\FM\09MYN1.SGM 09MYN1 21503 Federal Register / Vol. 82, No. 88 / Tuesday, May 9, 2017 / Notices multiplied by 1.5, plus the benefits rate, plus the operating rate, plus an allowance for bad debt. If applicable, travel expenses may also be added to the cost of providing the service. (3) Holiday rate. The total AMS grading, inspection, certification, classification, audit, or laboratory service program personnel direct pay divided by direct hours, which is then multiplied by the next year’s percentage of cost of living increase and then multiplied by 2, plus the benefits rate, plus the operating rate, plus an allowance for bad debt. If applicable, travel expenses may also be added to the cost of providing the service. When possible, AMS is adjusting the rates to cover all of its expenses and to provide for reasonable operating reserves. Many of these rates were not adjusted for a number of years. In some cases fees are decreased due to efficiencies and cost cutting measures. Applying the formulas described above without consideration of the operating reserves, in some cases, would have resulted in a substantial increase in fees. Last year, AMS started the process of adjusting some of the rates to recover costs associated with providing these services. To avoid an undue burden on industry operations in these cases, AMS started to phase in some of the increases over a multi-year period. AMS continued this process and reassessed whether the fee rates and phase-in period were appropriate based on the formula and established operating reserve. Fees are being adjusted accordingly. Drawing upon the existing operating reserves will not affect AMS’ ability to maintain the minimally required operating reserves. All rates are per-hour except when a per-unit cost is noted. The specific amounts in each rate calculation are available upon request from the specific AMS program. 2017 RATES Regular Overtime Holiday Includes travel costs in rate Start date Cotton Fees 7 CFR Part 27—Cotton Classification Under Cotton Futures Legislation Subpart A—Regulations; §§ 27.80—27.90 Costs of Classifications and Micronaire Cotton Standardization Certification for Futures Contract (Grading services for samples submitted by CCC-licensed samplers). $4.25/bale X August 1, 2017. Transfer of Certification Data to New Owner or Certified Warehouse (Electronic transfer performed). $0.20/bale or $5.00 per page minimum X August 1, 2017. 7 CFR Part 28—Cotton Classing, Testing, and Standards Subpart A—Regulations Under the United States Cotton Standards Act; §§ 28.115–28.126 Fees and Costs Subpart D—Cotton Classification and Market News Service for Producers; § 28.909 Costs; § 28.910 Classification of Samples and Issuance of Classification Data; § 28.911 Review Classification Cotton Grading Form 1: Grading Services for Producers (submitted by licensed sampler). $2.30/bale X July 1, 2017. Form 1 Review (new sample submitted by licensed sampler) $2.30/bale X July 1, 2017. Form A Determinations (sample submitted by licensed warehouse). $2.30/bale X July 1, 2017. Form C Determinations (sample submitted by non-licensed entity; bale sampled under USDA supervision). $2.30/bale .................... July 1, 2017. Form D Determination (sample submitted by owner or agent; classification represents sample only). $2.30/bale X July 1, 2017. Foreign Growth Classification (sample of foreign growth cotton submitted by owner or agent; classification represents sample only). $6.00/sample X August 1, 2017. Arbitration (comparison of a sample to the official standards or a sample type). $6.00/sample X August 1, 2017. Exam: $150/applicant Reexamination: $130/applicant X July 1, 2017. Special Sample Handling (return of samples per request) ..... $0.50/sample X July 1, 2017. Electronic Copy of Classification Record ................................ $0.05/bale ($5.00/month minimum with any records received) X July 1, 2017. Form A Rewrite (reissuance of Form 1, Form A, or Futures Certification data or combination). $0.15/bale or $5.00/page minimum X August 1, 2017. mstockstill on DSK30JT082PROD with NOTICES Practical Cotton Classing Exam (for non-USDA employees) VerDate Sep<11>2014 19:20 May 08, 2017 Jkt 241001 PO 00000 Frm 00002 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 E:\FR\FM\09MYN1.SGM 09MYN1 21504 Federal Register / Vol. 82, No. 88 / Tuesday, May 9, 2017 / Notices 2017 RATES—Continued Regular Overtime Holiday Includes travel costs in rate Start date Form R (reissuance of Form 1 classification only) .................. $0.15/bale or $5.00/page minimum X July 1, 2017. International Instrument Level Assessment ............................. $4.00/sample X July 1, 2017. Dairy Fees 7 CFR Part 58—Grading and Inspection, General Specifications for Approved Plants and Standards for Grades of Dairy Products Subpart A—Regulations Governing the Inspection and Grading Services of Manufactured or Processed Dairy Products; §§ 58.38–58.46 Fees and Charges Continuous Resident Grading Service .................................... $76.00 $90.92 $107.24 X Oct 1, 2017. Non-resident and Intermittent Grading Service; State Graders; Equipment Review. 82.00 96.76 116.64 X Oct 1, 2017. Non-resident Services 6 p.m.–6 a.m. (10 percent night differential). 90.20 106.44 128.32 X Oct 1, 2017. Export Certificate Services ...................................................... 82.00 N/A N/A .................... Oct 1, 2017. Special Handling ...................................................................... 41.00 N/A N/A .................... Oct 1, 2017. Fax Charge .............................................................................. 4.00 N/A N/A .................... Oct 1, 2017. Derogation Application ............................................................. 123.00 N/A N/A .................... Oct 1, 2017. Fruit and Vegetable Fees 7 CFR Part 51—Fresh Fruits, Vegetables and Other Products (Inspection, Certification, and Standards) Subpart A—Regulations; §§ 51.37–51.44 Schedule of Fees and Charges at Destination Markets; § 51.45 Schedule of Fees and Charges at Shipping Point Areas Quality and Condition Inspections for Whole Lots .................. $191.00 per lot .................... Oct 1, 2017. Quality and Condition Half Lot or Condition-Only Inspections for Whole Lots. $159.00 per lot .................... Oct 1, 2017. Condition—Half Lot .................................................................. $146.00 per lot .................... Oct 1, 2017. Quality and Condition or Condition-Only Inspections for Additional Lots of the Same Product. $87.00 per lot .................... Oct 1, 2017. Dockside Inspections—Each package weighing <30 lbs ........ $0.044 per pkg. .................... Oct 1, 2017. Dockside Inspections—Each package weighing >30 lbs ........ $0.068 per pkg. .................... Oct 1, 2017. Charge per Individual Product for Dockside Inspection .......... $174.00 per lot .................... Oct 1, 2017. Charge per Each Additional Lot of the Same Product ............ $79.00 per lot .................... Oct 1, 2017. .................... Oct 1, 2017. .................... Oct 1, 2017. Inspections for All Hourly Work ............................................... $85.00 Audit Services .......................................................................... $112.00 $148.00 $108.00 7 CFR Part 52—Processed Fruits and Vegetables, Processed ProductsThereof, and Other Processed Food Products Subpart—Regulations Governing Inspection and Certification; §§ 52.41–52.51 Fees and Charges $75.00 $95.00 $116.00 X Oct 1, 2017. In-plant Inspections Under Annual Contract (year-round) ....... 72.00 92.00 112.00 X Oct 1, 2017. Additional Graders (in-plant) or Less Than Year-Round ......... mstockstill on DSK30JT082PROD with NOTICES Lot Inspections ......................................................................... 83.00 106.00 128.00 X Oct 1, 2017. .................... Oct 1, 2017. X Oct 1, 2017. Audit Services .......................................................................... $108.00 Meat and Livestock Fees 7 CFR Part 54—Meats, Prepared Meats, and Meat Products (Grading, Certification, and Standards) Subpart A—Regulations; §§ 54.27–54.28 Charges for Service Commitment Grading ............................................................... VerDate Sep<11>2014 18:19 May 08, 2017 Jkt 241001 PO 00000 Frm 00003 $66.00 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 $83.00 $100.00 E:\FR\FM\09MYN1.SGM 09MYN1 21505 Federal Register / Vol. 82, No. 88 / Tuesday, May 9, 2017 / Notices 2017 RATES—Continued Regular Overtime Holiday Includes travel costs in rate Start date Non-commitment Grading ........................................................ 87.00 103.00 120.00 .................... Oct 1, 2017. Night Differential (6 p.m.–6 a.m.) ............................................ 73.00 91.00 109.00 .................... Oct 1, 2017. 7 CFR Part 62—Livestock, Meat and Other Agricultural Commodities (Quality Systems Verification Programs) Subpart A—Quality Systems Verification Definitions; § 62.300 Fees and Other Costs for Service Auditing Activities ..................................................................... $108.00 .................... Oct 1, 2017. 7 CFR Part 75—Regulations for Inspection and Certification of Quality of Agricultural and Vegetable Seeds § 75.41 General Laboratory Testing ................................................................... $58.00 Administrative Fee ................................................................... $86.00 $115.00 Oct 1, 2017. .................... $14.50 per certificate X Oct 1, 2017. Poultry Fees 7 CFR Part 56—Voluntary Grading of Shell Eggs Subpart A—Grading of Shell Eggs; §§ 56.45–56.54 Fees and Charges 7 CFR Part 70—Voluntary Grading of Poultry and Rabbit Products Subpart A-Grading of Poultry and Rabbit Products; §§ 70.70–70.78 Fees and Charges Resident Service (in-plant) ...................................................... 1 $48.00 2 $56.00 2 $81.00 X Oct 1, 2017. Resident, Night Differential (6 p.m.–6 a.m.) ............................ 2 51.00 2 62.00 2 88.00 X Oct 1, 2017. Resident, Sunday Differential .................................................. 2 58.00 2 69.00 N/A X Oct 1, 2017. Resident, Sunday and Night Differential ................................. 2 63.00 2 72.00 N/A X Oct 1, 2017. Fee Service (non-scheduled) ................................................... 78.00 97.00 117.00 .................... Oct 1, 2017. .................... Oct 1, 2017. Audit Service ............................................................................ $108.00 Science and Technology Fees 7 CFR Part 91—Services and General Information (Science and Technology) Subpart I—Fees and Charges; §§ 91.37–91.45 Laboratory Testing Services .................................................... $88.00 $104.00 $120.00 .................... Oct 1, 2017. Laboratory Approval Services 3 ............................................... 185.00 211.00 234.00 X Jan 1, 2018. Tobacco Fees 7 CFR Part 29—Tobacco Inspection Subpart A—Policy Statement and Regulations Governing the Extension of Tobacco Inspection and Price Support Services to New Markets and to Additional Sales on Designated Markets Subpart B—Regulations; §§ 29.123–29.129 Fees and Charges; § 29.500 Fees and charges for inspection and acceptance of imported tobacco Subpart F—Policy Statement and Regulations Governing the Identification and Certification of Non-quota Tobacco Produced and Marketed in Quota Area; § 29.9251 Fees and Charges mstockstill on DSK30JT082PROD with NOTICES Domestic Permissive Inspection and Certification (re-grading of domestic tobacco for processing plants, retesting of imported tobacco, and grading tobacco for research stations.). $55.00 $64.00 $72.00 .................... July 1, 2017. Export Permissive Inspection and Certification (grading of domestic tobacco for manufacturers and dealers for duty drawback consideration). $0.0025/pound X July 1, 2017. Grading for Risk Management Agency (for Tobacco Crop Insurance Quality Adjustment determinations). $0.015/pound X July 1, 2017. Pesticide Test Sampling (collection of certified tobacco sample and shipment to AMS National Science Laboratory for testing). $0.0065/kg or $0.0029/pound X July 1, 2017. VerDate Sep<11>2014 18:19 May 08, 2017 Jkt 241001 PO 00000 Frm 00004 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 E:\FR\FM\09MYN1.SGM 09MYN1 21506 Federal Register / Vol. 82, No. 88 / Tuesday, May 9, 2017 / Notices 2017 RATES—Continued Regular Overtime Holiday Includes travel costs in rate Start date Pesticide Retest Sampling (collection of certified tobacco sample from a previously sampled lot for re-testing at the AMS National Science Laboratory; fee includes shipping). $115.00/sample and $55.00/hour X July 1, 2017. Standards Course (training by USDA-certified instructor on tobacco grading procedures). $1,250.00/person .................... July 1, 2017. Import Inspection and Certification (grading of imported tobacco for manufacturers and dealers). $0.0170/kg or $0.0080/pound X July 1, 2017. 1 Administrative charges are applied in addition to hourly rates for resident service as specified in Part 56, Subpart A, § 56.52(a)(4); Part 56, Subpart A, § 56.54(a)(2); Part 70, Subpart A, § 70.76(a)(2); Part 70, Subpart A, § 70.77(a)(4) and Part 70, Subpart A, § 70.77(a)(5). 3 Travel costs outside the United States will be added to the fee, if applicable. Authority: 7 U.S.C. 15b; 7 U.S.C. 473a–b; 7 U.S.C. 55 and 61; 7 U.S.C. 51–65; 7 U.S.C. 471–476; 7 U.S.C. 511, 511s; and 7 U.S.C. 1621–1627. Dated: May 4, 2017. Bruce Summers, Acting Administrator. [FR Doc. 2017–09350 Filed 5–8–17; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 3410–02–P DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE Submission for OMB Review; Comment Request Food and Nutrition Service mstockstill on DSK30JT082PROD with NOTICES May 4, 2017. The Department of Agriculture has submitted the following information collection requirement(s) to OMB for review and clearance under the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995, Public Law 104–13. Comments are requested regarding (1) whether the collection of information is necessary for the proper performance of the functions of the agency, including whether the information will have practical utility; (2) the accuracy of the agency’s estimate of burden including the validity of the methodology and assumptions used; (3) ways to enhance the quality, utility and clarity of the information to be collected; and (4) ways to minimize the burden of the collection of information on those who are to respond, including through the use of appropriate automated, electronic, mechanical, or other technological collection techniques or other forms of information technology. Comments regarding this information collection received by June 8, 2017 will be considered. Written comments should be addressed to: Desk Officer for Agriculture, Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs, Office of Management and Budget (OMB), OIRA_ Submission@omb.eop.gov or fax (202) 395–5806 and to Departmental Clearance Office, USDA, OCIO, Mail VerDate Sep<11>2014 Stop 7602, Washington, DC 20250– 7602. Copies of the submission(s) may be obtained by calling (202) 720–8958. An agency may not conduct or sponsor a collection of information unless the collection of information displays a currently valid OMB control number and the agency informs potential persons who are to respond to the collection of information that such persons are not required to respond to the collection of information unless it displays a currently valid OMB control number. 18:19 May 08, 2017 Jkt 241001 Title: Child Nutrition Program Operations Study II (CN–OPS II). OMB Control Number: 0584–0607. Summary of Collection: The objective of the Child Nutrition Program Operations Study II (CN–OPS–II) is to collect timely data on policies, administrative, and operational issues on the Child Nutrition Programs (CNP). The study will help FNS obtain general descriptive data on the child nutrition programs’ characteristics needed to respond to questions concerning those programs; obtain data related to program administration for designing and revising program regulations, managing resources, and reporting requirements; and obtain data related to program operations to help FNS develop and provide training and technical assistance to the School Food Authorities and State Agencies responsible for administering these programs. Need and Use of the Information: This study will survey School Food Authority and State Child Nutrition directors. FNS will use the data to understand how recent and proposed legislation, regulations, policies, and initiatives change the operations in the child nutrition programs and to describe trends in the programs’ participation PO 00000 Frm 00005 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 and operational practices, as well as aspects of particular operations. Description of Respondents: State, Local, or Tribal Government. Number of Respondents: 3,379. Frequency of Responses: Reporting: Annually. Total Burden Hours: 4,099. Ruth Brown, Departmental Information Collection Clearance Officer. [FR Doc. 2017–09396 Filed 5–8–17; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 3410–30–P DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE Submission for OMB Review; Comment Request May 4, 2017. The Department of Agriculture has submitted the following information collection requirement(s) to OMB for review and clearance under the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995, Public Law 104–13. Comments are requested regarding (1) whether the collection of information is necessary for the proper performance of the functions of the agency, including whether the information will have practical utility; (2) the accuracy of the agency’s estimate of burden including the validity of the methodology and assumptions used; (3) ways to enhance the quality, utility and clarity of the information to be collected; (4) ways to minimize the burden of the collection of information on those who are to respond, including through the use of appropriate automated, electronic, mechanical or other technological collection techniques or other forms of information technology. Comments regarding this information collection received by June 8, 2017 will be considered. Written comments should be addressed to: Desk Officer for Agriculture, Office of Information and E:\FR\FM\09MYN1.SGM 09MYN1

Agencies

[Federal Register Volume 82, Number 88 (Tuesday, May 9, 2017)]
[Notices]
[Pages 21502-21506]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Publishing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 2017-09350]


========================================================================
Notices
                                                Federal Register
________________________________________________________________________

This section of the FEDERAL REGISTER contains documents other than rules 
or proposed rules that are applicable to the public. Notices of hearings 
and investigations, committee meetings, agency decisions and rulings, 
delegations of authority, filing of petitions and applications and agency 
statements of organization and functions are examples of documents 
appearing in this section.

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


Federal Register / Vol. 82, No. 88 / Tuesday, May 9, 2017 / Notices

[[Page 21502]]



DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE

Agricultural Marketing Service

[Document No. AMS-LPS-16-0117]


2017 Rates Charged for AMS Services

AGENCY: Agricultural Marketing Service, USDA.

ACTION: Notice.

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

SUMMARY: The Agricultural Marketing Service (AMS) is announcing the 
2017 rates it will charge for voluntary grading, inspection, 
certification, auditing and laboratory services for a variety of 
agricultural commodities including meat and poultry, fruits and 
vegetables, eggs, dairy products, and cotton and tobacco. The 2017 
regular, overtime, holiday, and laboratory services rates will be 
applied at the beginning of the crop year, fiscal year or as required 
by law (June 1 for most cotton programs) depending on the commodity. 
Other starting dates are added to this notice based on cotton industry 
practices. This action establishes the rates for user-funded programs 
based on costs incurred by AMS.

DATES: May 10, 2017.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Sonia Jimenez, AMS, U.S. Department of 
Agriculture, Room 2095-S, 1400 Independence Ave. SW., Washington, DC 
20250; telephone (202) 720-6766, fax (202) 205-5772; email 
sonia.jimenez@ams.usda.gov.

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: The Agricultural Marketing Act of 1946, as 
amended, (AMA) (7 U.S.C. 1621-1627), provides for the collection of 
fees to cover costs of various inspection, grading, certification or 
auditing services covering many agricultural commodities and products. 
The AMA also provides for the recovery of costs incurred in providing 
laboratory services. The Cotton Statistics and Estimates Act (7 U.S.C. 
471-476) and the U.S. Cotton Standards Act (7 U.S.C. 51-65) provide for 
classification of cotton and development of cotton standards materials 
necessary for cotton classification. The Cotton Futures Act (7 U.S.C. 
15b) provides for futures certification services and the Tobacco 
Inspection Act (7 U.S.C. 511-511s) provides for tobacco inspection and 
grading. These Acts also provide for the recovery of costs associated 
with these services.
    On November 13, 2014, the Department of Agriculture (Department) 
published in the Federal Register a final rule that established 
standardized formulas for calculating the fees charged by AMS user-
funded programs (79 FR 67313). Every year since then, the Department 
has published in the Federal Register a notice announcing the rates for 
its user -funded programs.
    This notice announces the 2017 fee rates for voluntary grading, 
inspection, certification, auditing and laboratory services for a 
variety of agricultural commodities including meat and poultry, fruits 
and vegetables, eggs, dairy products, and cotton and tobacco on a per-
hour rate and, in some instances, the equivalent per-unit cost. The 
per-unit cost is provided to facilitate understanding of the costs 
associated with the service to the industries that historically used 
unit-cost basis for payment. The fee rates will be effective at the 
beginning of the fiscal year, crop year, or as required by specific 
laws (June 1 for most cotton programs). The cotton futures-related 
services effective date has been changed to August 1 to allow for 
cotton contracts to expire before starting a new fee rate.
    The rates reflect direct and indirect costs of providing services. 
Direct costs include the cost of salaries, employee benefits, and if 
applicable, travel and some operating costs. Indirect or overhead costs 
include the cost of Program and Agency activities supporting the 
services provided to the industry. The formula used to calculate these 
rates also includes operating reserve, which may add to or draw upon 
the existing operating reserves.
    These services include the grading, inspection or certification of 
quality factors in accordance with established U.S. Grade Standards; 
audits or accreditation according to International Organization for 
Standardization (ISO) standards and/or Hazard Analysis and Critical 
Control Point (HACCP) principles; and other marketing claims. The 
quality grades serve as a basis for market prices and reflect the value 
of agricultural commodities to both producers and consumers. AMS' 
grading and quality verification and certification, audit and 
accreditation, plant process and equipment verification, and laboratory 
approval services are voluntary tools paid for by the users on a fee-
for-service basis. The agriculture industry can use these tools to 
promote and communicate the quality of agricultural commodities to 
consumers. Laboratory services are provided for analytic testing, 
including but not limited to chemical, microbiological, biomolecular, 
and physical analyses. AMS is required by statute to recover the costs 
associated with these services.
    As required by the Cotton Statistics and Estimates Act (7 U.S.C. 
471-476), consultations regarding the establishment of the fee for 
cotton classification with U.S. cotton industry representatives are 
held in the beginning of the year when most industry stakeholder 
meetings take place. Representatives of all segments of the cotton 
industry, including producers, ginners, bale storage facility 
operators, merchants, cooperatives, and textile manufacturers were 
informed of the fees during various industry-sponsored forums.

Rates Calculations

    AMS calculated the rate for services, per hour per program 
employee, using the following formulas (a per-unit base is included for 
programs that charge for services on a per-unit basis):
    (1) Regular rate. The total AMS grading, inspection, certification, 
classification, audit, or laboratory service program personnel direct 
pay divided by direct hours for the previous year, which is then 
multiplied by the next year's percentage of cost of living increase, 
plus the benefits rate, plus the operating rate, plus the allowance for 
bad debt rate. If applicable, travel expenses may also be added to the 
cost of providing the service.
    (2) Overtime rate. The total AMS grading, inspection, 
certification, classification, audit, or laboratory service program 
personnel direct pay divided by direct hours, which is then multiplied 
by the next year's percentage of cost of living increase and then

[[Page 21503]]

multiplied by 1.5, plus the benefits rate, plus the operating rate, 
plus an allowance for bad debt. If applicable, travel expenses may also 
be added to the cost of providing the service.
    (3) Holiday rate. The total AMS grading, inspection, certification, 
classification, audit, or laboratory service program personnel direct 
pay divided by direct hours, which is then multiplied by the next 
year's percentage of cost of living increase and then multiplied by 2, 
plus the benefits rate, plus the operating rate, plus an allowance for 
bad debt. If applicable, travel expenses may also be added to the cost 
of providing the service.
    When possible, AMS is adjusting the rates to cover all of its 
expenses and to provide for reasonable operating reserves. Many of 
these rates were not adjusted for a number of years. In some cases fees 
are decreased due to efficiencies and cost cutting measures. Applying 
the formulas described above without consideration of the operating 
reserves, in some cases, would have resulted in a substantial increase 
in fees. Last year, AMS started the process of adjusting some of the 
rates to recover costs associated with providing these services. To 
avoid an undue burden on industry operations in these cases, AMS 
started to phase in some of the increases over a multi-year period. AMS 
continued this process and reassessed whether the fee rates and phase-
in period were appropriate based on the formula and established 
operating reserve. Fees are being adjusted accordingly. Drawing upon 
the existing operating reserves will not affect AMS' ability to 
maintain the minimally required operating reserves.
    All rates are per-hour except when a per-unit cost is noted. The 
specific amounts in each rate calculation are available upon request 
from the specific AMS program.

                                                   2017 Rates
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                                                         Includes
                                  Regular      Overtime     Holiday    travel costs           Start date
                                                                          in rate
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                                   Cotton Fees
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
7 CFR Part 27--Cotton Classification Under Cotton Futures Legislation
  Subpart A--Regulations; Sec.  Sec.   27.80--27.90 Costs of Classifications and Micronaire
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                             Cotton Standardization
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Certification for Futures                     $4.25/bale                         X   August 1, 2017.
 Contract (Grading services
 for samples submitted by CCC-
 licensed samplers).
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Transfer of Certification Data   $0.20/bale or $5.00 per page minimum            X   August 1, 2017.
 to New Owner or Certified
 Warehouse (Electronic
 transfer performed).
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
7 CFR Part 28--Cotton Classing, Testing, and Standards
  Subpart A--Regulations Under the United States Cotton Standards Act; Sec.  Sec.   28.115-28.126 Fees and Costs
  Subpart D--Cotton Classification and Market News Service for Producers; Sec.   28.909 Costs; Sec.   28.910
   Classification of Samples and Issuance of Classification Data; Sec.   28.911 Review Classification
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                                 Cotton Grading
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Form 1: Grading Services for                  $2.30/bale                         X   July 1, 2017.
 Producers (submitted by
 licensed sampler).
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Form 1 Review (new sample                     $2.30/bale                         X   July 1, 2017.
 submitted by licensed
 sampler).
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Form A Determinations (sample                 $2.30/bale                         X   July 1, 2017.
 submitted by licensed
 warehouse).
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Form C Determinations (sample                 $2.30/bale               ............  July 1, 2017.
 submitted by non-licensed
 entity; bale sampled under
 USDA supervision).
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Form D Determination (sample                  $2.30/bale                         X   July 1, 2017.
 submitted by owner or agent;
 classification represents
 sample only).
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Foreign Growth Classification                $6.00/sample                        X   August 1, 2017.
 (sample of foreign growth
 cotton submitted by owner or
 agent; classification
 represents sample only).
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Arbitration (comparison of a                 $6.00/sample                        X   August 1, 2017.
 sample to the official
 standards or a sample type).
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Practical Cotton Classing Exam           Exam: $150/applicant                    X   July 1, 2017.
 (for non-USDA employees).
                                    Reexamination: $130/applicant
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Special Sample Handling                      $0.50/sample                        X   July 1, 2017.
 (return of samples per
 request).
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Electronic Copy of               $0.05/bale ($5.00/month minimum with            X   July 1, 2017.
 Classification Record.                 any records received)
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Form A Rewrite (reissuance of      $0.15/bale or $5.00/page minimum              X   August 1, 2017.
 Form 1, Form A, or Futures
 Certification data or
 combination).
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

[[Page 21504]]

 
Form R (reissuance of Form 1       $0.15/bale or $5.00/page minimum              X   July 1, 2017.
 classification only).
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
International Instrument Level               $4.00/sample                        X   July 1, 2017.
 Assessment.
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                                   Dairy Fees
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
7 CFR Part 58--Grading and Inspection, General Specifications for Approved Plants and Standards for Grades of
 Dairy Products
  Subpart A--Regulations Governing the Inspection and Grading Services of Manufactured or Processed Dairy
   Products; Sec.  Sec.   58.38-58.46 Fees and Charges
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Continuous Resident Grading          $76.00       $90.92      $107.24            X   Oct 1, 2017.
 Service.
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Non-resident and Intermittent         82.00        96.76       116.64            X   Oct 1, 2017.
 Grading Service; State
 Graders; Equipment Review.
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Non-resident Services 6 p.m.-6        90.20       106.44       128.32            X   Oct 1, 2017.
 a.m. (10 percent night
 differential).
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Export Certificate Services...        82.00          N/A          N/A  ............  Oct 1, 2017.
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Special Handling..............        41.00          N/A          N/A  ............  Oct 1, 2017.
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Fax Charge....................         4.00          N/A          N/A  ............  Oct 1, 2017.
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Derogation Application........       123.00          N/A          N/A  ............  Oct 1, 2017.
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                            Fruit and Vegetable Fees
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
7 CFR Part 51--Fresh Fruits, Vegetables and Other Products (Inspection, Certification, and Standards)
  Subpart A--Regulations; Sec.  Sec.   51.37-51.44 Schedule of Fees and Charges at Destination Markets; Sec.
   51.45 Schedule of Fees and Charges at Shipping Point Areas
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Quality and Condition                      $191.00 per lot             ............  Oct 1, 2017.
 Inspections for Whole Lots.
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Quality and Condition Half Lot             $159.00 per lot             ............  Oct 1, 2017.
 or Condition-Only Inspections
 for Whole Lots.
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Condition--Half Lot...........             $146.00 per lot             ............  Oct 1, 2017.
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Quality and Condition or                    $87.00 per lot             ............  Oct 1, 2017.
 Condition-Only Inspections
 for Additional Lots of the
 Same Product.
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Dockside Inspections--Each                 $0.044 per pkg.             ............  Oct 1, 2017.
 package weighing <30 lbs.
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Dockside Inspections--Each                 $0.068 per pkg.             ............  Oct 1, 2017.
 package weighing >30 lbs.
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Charge per Individual Product              $174.00 per lot             ............  Oct 1, 2017.
 for Dockside Inspection.
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Charge per Each Additional Lot              $79.00 per lot             ............  Oct 1, 2017.
 of the Same Product.
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Inspections for All Hourly           $85.00      $112.00      $148.00  ............  Oct 1, 2017.
 Work.
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Audit Services................                 $108.00                 ............  Oct 1, 2017.
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
7 CFR Part 52--Processed Fruits and Vegetables, Processed ProductsThereof, and Other Processed Food Products
  Subpart--Regulations Governing Inspection and Certification; Sec.  Sec.   52.41-52.51 Fees and Charges
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Lot Inspections...............       $75.00       $95.00      $116.00            X   Oct 1, 2017.
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
In-plant Inspections Under            72.00        92.00       112.00            X   Oct 1, 2017.
 Annual Contract (year-round).
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Additional Graders (in-plant)         83.00       106.00       128.00            X   Oct 1, 2017.
 or Less Than Year-Round.
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Audit Services................                 $108.00                 ............  Oct 1, 2017.
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                             Meat and Livestock Fees
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
7 CFR Part 54--Meats, Prepared Meats, and Meat Products (Grading, Certification, and Standards)
  Subpart A--Regulations; Sec.  Sec.   54.27-54.28 Charges for Service
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Commitment Grading............       $66.00       $83.00      $100.00            X   Oct 1, 2017.
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

[[Page 21505]]

 
Non-commitment Grading........        87.00       103.00       120.00  ............  Oct 1, 2017.
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Night Differential (6 p.m.-6          73.00        91.00       109.00  ............  Oct 1, 2017.
 a.m.).
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
7 CFR Part 62--Livestock, Meat and Other Agricultural Commodities (Quality Systems Verification Programs)
  Subpart A--Quality Systems Verification Definitions; Sec.   62.300 Fees and Other Costs for Service
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Auditing Activities...........                 $108.00                 ............  Oct 1, 2017.
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
7 CFR Part 75--Regulations for Inspection and Certification of Quality of Agricultural and Vegetable Seeds
  Sec.   75.41 General
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Laboratory Testing............       $58.00       $86.00      $115.00            X   Oct 1, 2017.
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Administrative Fee............          $14.50 per certificate         ............  Oct 1, 2017.
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                                  Poultry Fees
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
7 CFR Part 56--Voluntary Grading of Shell Eggs
  Subpart A--Grading of Shell Eggs; Sec.  Sec.   56.45-56.54 Fees and Charges
7 CFR Part 70--Voluntary Grading of Poultry and Rabbit Products
  Subpart A-Grading of Poultry and Rabbit Products; Sec.  Sec.   70.70-70.78 Fees and Charges
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Resident Service (in-plant)...   \1\ $48.00   \2\ $56.00   \2\ $81.00            X   Oct 1, 2017.
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Resident, Night Differential      \2\ 51.00    \2\ 62.00    \2\ 88.00            X   Oct 1, 2017.
 (6 p.m.-6 a.m.).
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Resident, Sunday Differential.    \2\ 58.00    \2\ 69.00          N/A            X   Oct 1, 2017.
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Resident, Sunday and Night        \2\ 63.00    \2\ 72.00          N/A            X   Oct 1, 2017.
 Differential.
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Fee Service (non-scheduled)...        78.00        97.00       117.00  ............  Oct 1, 2017.
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Audit Service.................                 $108.00                 ............  Oct 1, 2017.
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                           Science and Technology Fees
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
7 CFR Part 91--Services and General Information (Science and Technology)
  Subpart I--Fees and Charges; Sec.  Sec.   91.37-91.45
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Laboratory Testing Services...       $88.00      $104.00      $120.00  ............  Oct 1, 2017.
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Laboratory Approval Services         185.00       211.00       234.00            X   Jan 1, 2018.
 \3\.
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                                  Tobacco Fees
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
7 CFR Part 29--Tobacco Inspection
  Subpart A--Policy Statement and Regulations Governing the Extension of Tobacco Inspection and Price Support
   Services to New Markets and to Additional Sales on Designated Markets
  Subpart B--Regulations; Sec.  Sec.   29.123-29.129 Fees and Charges; Sec.   29.500 Fees and charges for
   inspection and acceptance of imported tobacco
  Subpart F--Policy Statement and Regulations Governing the Identification and Certification of Non-quota
   Tobacco Produced and Marketed in Quota Area; Sec.   29.9251 Fees and Charges
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Domestic Permissive Inspection       $55.00       $64.00       $72.00  ............  July 1, 2017.
 and Certification (re-grading
 of domestic tobacco for
 processing plants, retesting
 of imported tobacco, and
 grading tobacco for research
 stations.).
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Export Permissive Inspection                $0.0025/pound                        X   July 1, 2017.
 and Certification (grading of
 domestic tobacco for
 manufacturers and dealers for
 duty drawback consideration).
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Grading for Risk Management                  $0.015/pound                        X   July 1, 2017.
 Agency (for Tobacco Crop
 Insurance Quality Adjustment
 determinations).
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Pesticide Test Sampling              $0.0065/kg or $0.0029/pound                 X   July 1, 2017.
 (collection of certified
 tobacco sample and shipment
 to AMS National Science
 Laboratory for testing).
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

[[Page 21506]]

 
Pesticide Retest Sampling           $115.00/sample and $55.00/hour               X   July 1, 2017.
 (collection of certified
 tobacco sample from a
 previously sampled lot for re-
 testing at the AMS National
 Science Laboratory; fee
 includes shipping).
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Standards Course (training by              $1,250.00/person            ............  July 1, 2017.
 USDA-certified instructor on
 tobacco grading procedures).
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Import Inspection and                $0.0170/kg or $0.0080/pound                 X   July 1, 2017.
 Certification (grading of
 imported tobacco for
 manufacturers and dealers).
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
\1\ Administrative charges are applied in addition to hourly rates for resident service as specified in Part 56,
  Subpart A, Sec.   56.52(a)(4); Part 56, Subpart A, Sec.   56.54(a)(2); Part 70, Subpart A, Sec.   70.76(a)(2);
  Part 70, Subpart A, Sec.   70.77(a)(4) and Part 70, Subpart A, Sec.   70.77(a)(5).
\3\ Travel costs outside the United States will be added to the fee, if applicable.


    Authority: 7 U.S.C. 15b; 7 U.S.C. 473a-b; 7 U.S.C. 55 and 61; 7 
U.S.C. 51-65; 7 U.S.C. 471-476; 7 U.S.C. 511, 511s; and 7 U.S.C. 
1621-1627.

    Dated: May 4, 2017.
Bruce Summers,
Acting Administrator.
[FR Doc. 2017-09350 Filed 5-8-17; 8:45 am]
 BILLING CODE 3410-02-P