Pecans Grown in the States of Alabama, Arkansas, Arizona, California, Florida, Georgia, Kansas, Louisiana, Missouri, Mississippi, North Carolina, New Mexico, Oklahoma, South Carolina, and Texas; Establishment of Reporting Requirements and New Information Collection, 33829-33833 [2017-15305]

Download as PDF 33829 Proposed Rules Federal Register Vol. 82, No. 139 Friday, July 21, 2017 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 986 [Doc. No. AMS–SC–17–0032, SC17–986–2 PR] Pecans Grown in the States of Alabama, Arkansas, Arizona, California, Florida, Georgia, Kansas, Louisiana, Missouri, Mississippi, North Carolina, New Mexico, Oklahoma, South Carolina, and Texas; Establishment of Reporting Requirements and New Information Collection AGENCY: Agricultural Marketing Service, USDA. ACTION: Proposed rule. This proposed rule invites comments on the establishment of reporting requirements under the Federal marketing order for pecans (order). The American Pecan Council (Council) locally administers the order and is comprised of growers and handlers of pecans operating within the production area and a public member. This action would require all pecan handlers to submit two forms to the Council: One for inter-handler transfers and another that includes year-end inventory and pecans handled throughout the year. The Council would use this information to facilitate assessment collection and provide valuable reports to the industry, including the annual marketing policy required by the order. This proposal also announces the Agricultural Marketing Service’s (AMS) intention to request approval from the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) of a new information collection. DATES: Comments must be received by September 19, 2017. Pursuant to the Paperwork Reduction Act, comments on the information collection burden must be received by September 19, 2017. ADDRESSES: Interested persons are invited to submit written comments sradovich on DSK3GMQ082PROD with PROPOSALS SUMMARY: VerDate Sep<11>2014 16:40 Jul 20, 2017 Jkt 241001 concerning this proposal. Comments must be sent to the Docket Clerk, Marketing Order and Agreement Division, Specialty Crops Program, AMS, USDA, 1400 Independence Avenue SW., STOP 0237, Washington, DC 20250–0237; Fax: (202) 720–8938; or Internet: http://www.regulations.gov. 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 in the Office of the Docket Clerk during regular business hours, or can be viewed at: http:// www.regulations.gov. All comments submitted in response to this proposal will be included in the record and will be made available to the public. Please be advised that the identity of the individuals or entities submitting the comments will be made public on the Internet at the address provided above. FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Jennie M. Varela, Marketing Specialist, or Christian D. Nissen, Regional Director, Southeast Marketing Field Office, Marketing Order and Agreement Division, Specialty Crops Program, AMS, USDA; Telephone: (863) 324– 3375, Fax: (863) 291–8614, or Email: Jennie.Varela@ams.usda.gov or Christian.Nissen@ams.usda.gov. Small businesses may request information on complying with this regulation by contacting Richard Lower, Marketing Order and Agreement Division, Specialty Crops Program, AMS, USDA, 1400 Independence Avenue SW., STOP 0237, Washington, DC 20250–0237; Telephone: (202) 720– 2491, Fax: (202) 720–8938, or Email: Richard.Lower@ams.usda.gov. This proposal is issued under Marketing Agreement and Order No. 986, (7 CFR part 986), regulating the handling of pecans grown in the states of Alabama, Arkansas, Arizona, California, Florida, Georgia, Kansas, Louisiana, Missouri, Mississippi, North Carolina, New Mexico, Oklahoma, South Carolina, and Texas, hereinafter referred to as the ‘‘order.’’ The order is effective under the Agricultural Marketing Agreement Act of 1937, as amended (7 U.S.C. 601–674), hereinafter referred to as the ‘‘Act.’’ The Department of Agriculture (USDA) is issuing this proposed rule in conformance with Executive Orders 13563 and 13175. SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: PO 00000 Frm 00001 Fmt 4702 Sfmt 4702 This action falls within a category of regulatory actions that the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) has exempted from Executive Order 12866 review. Additionally, because this rule does not meet the definition of a significant regulatory action it does not trigger the requirements contained in Executive Order 13771. See OMB’s Memorandum titled ‘‘Interim Guidance Implementing Section 2 of the Executive Order of January 30, 2017 titled ‘Reducing Regulation and Controlling Regulatory Costs’ ’’ (February 2, 2017). This proposed rule has been reviewed under Executive Order 12988, Civil Justice Reform. This proposed rule is not intended to have retroactive effect. The Act provides that administrative proceedings must be exhausted before parties may file suit in court. Under section 608c(15)(A) of the Act, any handler subject to an order may file with USDA a petition stating that the order, any provision of the order, or any obligation imposed in connection with the order is not in accordance with law and request a modification of the order or to be exempted therefrom. A handler is afforded the opportunity for a hearing on the petition. After the hearing, USDA would rule on the petition. The Act provides that the district court of the United States in any district in which the handler is an inhabitant, or has his or her principal place of business, has jurisdiction to review USDA’s ruling on the petition, provided an action is filed not later than 20 days after the date of the entry of the ruling. This proposed rule would establish reporting requirements under the order. This action would require all pecan handlers to submit to the Council reports of inter-handler transfers of pecans, inventory, and a summary of pecans handled. This information would be used to facilitate assessment collection and provide valuable reports to the industry, including the annual marketing policy required by the order. This proposal was unanimously recommended by the Council at its April 17, 2017, meeting. Section 986.61 of the order requires all handlers warehousing pecans as of August 31 be identified as the handler of those pecans and pay the assessment rate accordingly. Section 986.62 provides the Council, with the approval of the Secretary, authority to establish methods and procedures, including E:\FR\FM\21JYP1.SGM 21JYP1 sradovich on DSK3GMQ082PROD with PROPOSALS 33830 Federal Register / Vol. 82, No. 139 / Friday, July 21, 2017 / Proposed Rules necessary reports, to maintain accurate records for inter-handler transfers. Sections 986.75, 986.76, and 986.77 provide authority to prescribe reports of handler inventory, merchantable pecans handled, and pecans received by handlers, respectively. Section 986.78 further provides the Council, with the approval of the Secretary, authority to collect other reports and information from handlers needed to enable the Council to perform its duties. This proposed rule would utilize these authorities to establish new §§ 986.162 and 986.175 under the rules and regulations of the order. These new sections would require handlers of pecans to report to the Council any inter-handler transfers, and the volume of shelled, inshell, and total volume of pecans handled each fiscal year by type using specific Council forms. At its November 16, 2016 meeting, the first meeting following the order’s promulgation, the Council discussed its initial budget, assessment rates, and necessary reporting requirements in order to set up a program that is efficient and responsive to industry needs. During these discussions, the Council established a Statistics and Reporting Committee (Committee) to develop reporting requirements. Members of the Committee discussed the reporting needs of the industry, reviewed examples of reporting forms from other marketing orders, and met and worked with the staff of another marketing order in developing the proposed reporting requirements. The Committee also worked with USDA to ensure the recommended information collection would provide the information necessary to facilitate the administration of the order. At its February 23, 2017 meeting, the Council reviewed drafts of seven reporting forms as developed and recommended by the Committee. The Council expressed its interest in having as much electronic reporting as possible, but recognized that many handlers may prefer a paper submission. The Council also considered the timing of when forms would be due and submission dates that would work for all parts of the industry. After a thorough review and some modifications, seven forms were approved by the Council. At a meeting on April 17, 2017, the Council revisited the recommended reporting requirements and the accompanying forms. Acknowledging the industry was more than halfway through the fiscal year at that time, the Council took action to move forward with the minimum reports necessary to facilitate the collection of assessments VerDate Sep<11>2014 16:40 Jul 20, 2017 Jkt 241001 and to provide the other information needed for the 2016–17 fiscal year. Specifically, the Council voted to utilize two forms for the current fiscal year, one focusing on inter-handler transfers, and one containing information regarding year-end inventory and pecans handled throughout the fiscal year. The Council agreed it still wanted to move forward with all seven forms for the 2017–18 fiscal year, but considered year-end reporting on two forms as the most viable option for this fiscal year. The remaining five forms will be proposed in a subsequent rulemaking action. This proposed rule would add two new reporting requirements and two new forms to the rules and regulations under the order by adding §§ 986.162 and 986.175. The pecan industry includes a subset of handlers, defined in the order as accumulators, who compile pecans for the purpose of resale or transfer to another handler. Additionally, small handlers may also sell or transfer pecans to other handlers. During the formal rulemaking hearing, the industry expressed concern that it may be difficult to track pecans moved through accumulators or transferred between handlers. Further, some handlers and accumulators that are small operations may find reporting, recordkeeping, and paying assessments burdensome. The report of inter-handler transfers would include information on the month of transfer, type of pecans transferred, the volume transferred, the amount of assessments owed on the pecans transferred, identification information and signatures of the two handlers involved, and whether the transferring handler or receiving handler would be responsible for reporting and paying the assessments. This report would help ensure that transferred pecans are not counted twice for volume reporting purposes and would help facilitate the collection of assessments. It would also allow receiving handlers to assume the reporting burden from smaller entities and ensure payment of corresponding assessments. The Council selected the tenth day of the month following the month of transfer as the due date for reports of inter-handler transfers. Should the tenth day of the month fall on a weekend or holiday, reports would be due by the first business day following the tenth day of the month. However, given that the current season began October 1, 2016, for the 2016–17 fiscal year, all inter-handler transfer forms would need to be submitted by Monday, September 11, 2017. For subsequent fiscal years, reports of inter-handler transfers would PO 00000 Frm 00002 Fmt 4702 Sfmt 4702 be due on a monthly basis as specified above. In order to correctly collect assessments, provide industry data, and complete a marketing policy for the coming fiscal year, the Council requires accurate reports of what has been handled and what is in inventory going into the next fiscal year. Based on Council discussions, it is also important for the industry to know the variety and form of the pecan in inventory. This information would be vital to the industry as it enters the next harvest, as the amount and type of inventory impacts prices of the new crop. Collection of this data was one of the industry’s goals in promulgating the order, as currently there is no source for this type of information across the 15state production area. This information would be captured in the year-end inventory report. The year-end inventory report would include information on the handler submitting the form, total pounds by type of pecans inshell and shelled in inventory, inventory committed but not shipped for both export and domestic, and any uncommitted inventory. It would also include information on pecans handled throughout the year, as well as data for total inventory including both shelled and inshell, with shelled volume converted to an inshell basis using the conversion specified in the order (volume shelled × 2). In addition, it would include information regarding total assessments owed, assessments paid to date, and remaining assessments due for that handler. The order specifies that on August 31 of each year, every handler warehousing inshell pecans shall be identified as the first handler of those pecans and shall be required to pay the required assessment rate. The order also specifies that the marketing policy include an estimate of the handler inventory as of August 31. Consequently, the Council selected September 10 as the due date for the year-end inventory report, or the first business day following the tenth of September should the tenth fall on a weekend or a holiday. The Council believes this would give all handlers sufficient time to submit the information to the Council after August 31. Further, handlers would be required to pay to the Council all remaining unpaid assessments by the due date of the year-end inventory report. This action would require all pecan handlers to provide the Council with reports of any inter-handler transfers, year-end inventory, and pecans handled throughout the year. This information would facilitate assessment collections, provide valuable reports to the industry, E:\FR\FM\21JYP1.SGM 21JYP1 Federal Register / Vol. 82, No. 139 / Friday, July 21, 2017 / Proposed Rules sradovich on DSK3GMQ082PROD with PROPOSALS and allow the Council to complete the annual marketing policy required by the order. The Council also recommended additional reporting requirements, which would be effective for the 2017– 18 fiscal year. These requirements are being considered under a separate action. Initial Regulatory Flexibility Analysis Pursuant to requirements set forth in the Regulatory Flexibility Act (RFA) (5 U.S.C. 601–612), the Agricultural Marketing Service (AMS) has considered the economic impact of this action on small entities. Accordingly, AMS has prepared this initial regulatory flexibility analysis. The purpose of the RFA is to determine whether the regulatory action will have a significant economic impact on a substantial number of small entities and to fit regulatory actions to the scale of businesses subject to such actions in order that small businesses will not be unduly or disproportionately burdened. Marketing orders issued pursuant to the Act, and the rules issued thereunder, are unique in that they are brought about through group action of essentially small entities acting on their own behalf. There are approximately 2,500 growers of pecans in the production area and approximately 250 handlers subject to regulation under the marketing order. Small agricultural growers are defined by the Small Business Administration as those having annual receipts less than $750,000, and small agricultural service firms are defined as those whose annual receipts are less than $7,500,000 (13 CFR 121.201). According to information from the National Agricultural Statistics Service (NASS), the average grower price for pecans during the 2015–16 season was $2.20 per pound and 254 million pounds were utilized. The value for pecans that year totaled $558.8 million ($2.20 per pound multiplied by 254 million pounds). Taking the total value of production for pecans and dividing it by the total number of pecan growers provides an average return per grower of $223,520. Using the average price and utilization information, and assuming a normal bell-curve distribution of receipts among growers, the majority of growers receive less than $750,000 annually. Evidence presented at the formal rulemaking hearing indicates an average handler margin of $0.58 per pound. Adding this margin to the average grower price of $2.20 per pound of inshell pecans results in an estimated VerDate Sep<11>2014 16:40 Jul 20, 2017 Jkt 241001 handler price of $2.78 per pound. With a total 2015 production of 254 million pounds, ($2.78 per pound multiplied by 254 million pounds) the total value of production in 2015 was $706.12 million. Taking the total value of production for pecans and dividing it by the total number of pecan handlers provides an average return per handler of $2,824,480. Using this estimated price, the utilization volume, number of handlers, and assuming a normal bellcurve distribution of receipts among handlers, the majority of handlers have annual receipts of less than $7,500,000. Thus, the majority (a substantial number) of growers and handlers of pecans grown in the states of Alabama, Arkansas, Arizona, California, Florida, Georgia, Kansas, Louisiana, Missouri, Mississippi, North Carolina, New Mexico, Oklahoma, South Carolina, and Texas may be classified as small entities. This proposed rule would establish reporting requirements under the order. This action would require all pecan handlers to provide the Council with reports of any inter-handler transfers, year-end inventory, and pecans handled throughout the year. This information would facilitate the Council’s collection of assessments and provide valuable reports to the industry. This rule would establish new §§ 986.162 and 986.175 under the rules and regulations of the order. The authority for this action is provided for in §§ 986.62, 986.75, 986.76, 986.77, and 986.78 of the order. Requiring reports of transfers, handler inventory, and pecans handled throughout the year would impose an increase in the reporting burden on all pecan handlers. However, this data is already recorded and maintained by handlers as a part of their daily business. Handlers, regardless of size, should be able to readily access this information. Consequently, any additional costs associated with this change would be minimal (not significant) and apply equally to all handlers. This action should also help the entire industry by providing comprehensive data on pecans handled and year-end inventory. Collection of this data was one of the industry’s goals in promulgating the order as there is no other source for this type of data. This information would help with marketing and planning for the industry, as well as provide important information for the collection of assessments and in preparing the annual marketing policy required by the order. The benefits of this rule are expected to be equally available to all pecan growers and handlers, regardless of their size. PO 00000 Frm 00003 Fmt 4702 Sfmt 4702 33831 The Council discussed other alternatives to this action, including having additional reporting requirements, but determined that in order to efficiently carry out the objectives of the marketing order this first fiscal year, the information collected in these two reports would be sufficient. The Council also considered requiring the inter-handler transfer form to be submitted for each transfer. However, the Council determined that could be burdensome for some handlers and a monthly report would provide the necessary documentation. Therefore, the alternatives were rejected. This proposal would establish two new reporting requirements and would require two new Council forms. Therefore, this proposed rule would impose an increase in the reporting burden for all handlers, which is discussed in the Paperwork Reduction Act section of this document. As with all Federal marketing order programs, reports and forms are periodically reviewed to reduce information requirements and duplication by industry and public sector agencies. USDA has not identified any relevant Federal rules that duplicate, overlap, or conflict with this 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. Further, the Council’s meetings were widely publicized throughout the pecan industry and all interested persons were invited to attend the meetings and participate in Council deliberations on all issues. Additionally, the Council’s Committee meetings held February 23, 2017, and April 17, 2017, were also public meetings and all entities, both large and small, were able to express views on this issue. Finally, interested persons are invited to submit comments on this proposed rule, including the regulatory and information collection impacts of this action on small businesses. A small business guide on complying with fruit, vegetable, and specialty crop marketing agreements and orders may be viewed at: http://www.ams.usda.gov/ rules-regulations/moa/small-businesses. Any questions about the compliance guide should be sent to Richard Lower at the previously-mentioned address in the FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT section. A 60-day comment period is provided to allow interested persons to respond to this proposal. All written comments E:\FR\FM\21JYP1.SGM 21JYP1 33832 Federal Register / Vol. 82, No. 139 / Friday, July 21, 2017 / Proposed Rules sradovich on DSK3GMQ082PROD with PROPOSALS timely received will be considered before a final determination is made on this matter. Paperwork Reduction Act In accordance with the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995 (44 U.S.C. chapter 35), this notice announces AMS’s intent to request approval from the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) for a new information collection under OMB No. 0581—NEW. It will be merged with the forms currently approved under OMB No. 0581–0291 ‘‘Federal Marketing Order for Pecans.’’ Title: Pecans Grown in the States of Alabama, Arkansas, Arizona, California, Florida, Georgia, Kansas, Louisiana, Missouri, Mississippi, North Carolina, New Mexico, Oklahoma, South Carolina, and Texas; Marketing Order No. 986. OMB Number: 0581—NEW. Type of Request: New Collection. Abstract: The information requirements in this request are essential to carry out the intent of the Act, to provide the respondents the type of service they request, and to administer the pecan marketing order program. On April 17, 2017, the Council unanimously recommended that all pecan handlers covered under the order provide the Council with a record of any inter-handler transfers by type and volume. This form, titled ‘‘Report of Inter-Handler Transfers of Pecans’’, would be submitted directly to the Council by handlers by the tenth day of the month following the transfer(s). This information collection would improve the accuracy of the Council’s data collection by accounting for transferred pecans, and allow smaller handlers to transfer reporting and assessment obligations to another handler. The Council also recommended that all handlers covered under the order submit an annual report of inventory held by type as well as a summary of pecans handled for the year. This form, titled ‘‘Year End Inventory Report’’, would be submitted directly to the Council by handlers by September 10. This information collection will facilitate the Council’s collection of assessments needed to administer the program and provide necessary data for the industry on volume handled. It would also provide the volume in inventory going into the next fiscal year, which would assist with market planning and provide information for the marketing policy required by the order. The information collected would only be used by authorized representatives of VerDate Sep<11>2014 16:40 Jul 20, 2017 Jkt 241001 the USDA, including the AMS Specialty Crops Program regional and headquarters staff, and authorized employees of the Council. Authorized Council employees would be the primary users of the information, and the AMS would be the secondary users. The Council’s staff would compile the information and utilize it to account for assessments due, to calculate total pecans handled, and to prepare a marketing policy as required under the order. All proprietary information would be kept confidential in accordance with the Act and the order. The proposed request for new information collection under the order is as follows: Report of Inter-Handler Transfer of Pecans Estimate of Burden: Public reporting burden for this collection of information is estimated to be an average of 0.16 hours per response. Respondents: Handlers of pecans in Alabama, Arkansas, Arizona, California, Florida, Georgia, Kansas, Louisiana, Missouri, Mississippi, North Carolina, New Mexico, Oklahoma, South Carolina, and Texas. Estimated Number of Respondents: 30. Estimated Number of Responses per Respondent: 12. Estimated Total Annual Burden on Respondents: 60 hours. Year End Inventory Report Estimate of Burden: Public reporting burden for this collection of information is estimated to be an average of 0.33 hours per response. Respondents: Handlers of pecans in Alabama, Arkansas, Arizona, California, Florida, Georgia, Kansas, Louisiana, Missouri, Mississippi, North Carolina, New Mexico, Oklahoma, South Carolina, and Texas. Estimated Number of Respondents: 250. Estimated Number of Responses per Respondent: 1. Estimated Total Annual Burden on Respondents: 125 hours. Comments are invited on: (1) Whether the proposed 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 the burden of the proposed collection of information, 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 PO 00000 Frm 00004 Fmt 4702 Sfmt 4702 on those who are to respond, including the use of appropriate automated, electronic, mechanical, or other technological collection techniques or other forms of information technology. Comments should reference OMB No. 0581–NEW and the Marketing Order for Pecans Grown in the states of Alabama, Arkansas, Arizona, California, Florida, Georgia, Kansas, Louisiana, Missouri, Mississippi, North Carolina, New Mexico, Oklahoma, South Carolina, and Texas, and should be sent to the USDA in care of the Docket Clerk at the previously-mentioned address or at http://www.regulations.gov. All responses to this notice will be summarized and included in the request for OMB approval. All comments received will become a matter of public record and will be available for public inspection during regular business hours at the address of the Docket Clerk or at http://www.regulations.gov. If this proposed rule is finalized, this information collection will be merged with the forms currently approved under OMB No. 0581–0291 ‘‘Federal Marketing Order for Pecans.’’ List of Subjects in 7 CFR Part 986 Marketing agreements, Nuts, Pecans, Reporting and recordkeeping requirements. For the reasons set forth in the preamble, 7 CFR part 986 is proposed to be amended as follows: PART 986—PECANS GROWN IN THE STATES OF ALABAMA, ARKANSAS, ARIZONA, CALIFORNIA, FLORIDA, GEORGIA, KANSAS, LOUISIANA, MISSOURI, MISSISSIPPI, NORTH CAROLINA, NEW MEXICO, OKLAHOMA, SOUTH CAROLINA, AND TEXAS 1. The authority citation for 7 CFR part 986 continues to read as follows: ■ Authority: 7 U.S.C. 601–674. 2. Revise the heading ‘‘Subpart B— [Reserved]’’ to read ‘‘Subpart—Rules and Regulations.’’ ■ 3. Add § 986.162 to subpart B to read as follows: ■ § 986.162 Inter-handler transfers. (a) Inter-handler transfers of inshell pecans, pursuant to § 986.62, shall be reported to the Council on APC Form 4. Handlers shall file reports by the tenth day of the month following the month of transfer. Should the tenth day of the month fall on a weekend or holiday, reports are due by the first business day following the tenth day of the month; Provided, that for the 2016–17 fiscal year, all inter-handler transfer forms E:\FR\FM\21JYP1.SGM 21JYP1 Federal Register / Vol. 82, No. 139 / Friday, July 21, 2017 / Proposed Rules shall be submitted by Monday, September 11, 2017. The report shall contain the following information: (1) Month of transfer; (2) The type and weight of pecans transferred; (3) The amount of assessments owed on the pecans transferred; (4) The names and signatures for both the transferring and receiving handlers; (5) Handler assuming the reporting and assessment obligations on the pecans transferred. ■ 4. Add § 986.175 to read as follows: sradovich on DSK3GMQ082PROD with PROPOSALS § 986.175 Handler inventory. (a) Handlers shall submit to the Council a year-end inventory report following August 31 each fiscal year. Handlers shall file such reports by September 10. Should September 10 fall on a weekend, reports are due by the first business day following September 10. Such reports shall be reported to the Council on APC Form 7 and include: (1) The name and address of the handler; (2) The total weight and type of inshell pecans in inventory, regardless of country of origin; (3) The total weight and type of shelled pecans in inventory, regardless of country of origin; (4) The total weight and type of inshell pecans committed, not shipped, for export and domestic shipments, and any uncommitted inventory, regardless of country of origin; (5) The total weight and type of shelled pecans committed, not shipped, for export and domestic shipments, and any uncommitted inventory, regardless of country of origin; (6) The combined total inventory for inshell and shelled pecans calculated on an inshell basis, and combined weight committed, not shipped, for exports and domestic shipments, and any uncommitted inventory; (7) Total weight and type of domestic pecans handled for the fiscal year; (8) Total assessments owed, assessments paid to date, and remaining assessments due to be paid by the due date of the year-end inventory report for the fiscal year. Dated: July 17, 2017. Bruce Summers, Acting Administrator, Agricultural Marketing Service. [FR Doc. 2017–15305 Filed 7–20–17; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 3410–02–P VerDate Sep<11>2014 16:40 Jul 20, 2017 Jkt 241001 DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION Federal Aviation Administration 14 CFR Part 71 [Docket No. FAA–2017–0354; Airspace Docket No. 17–ACE–8] Proposed Amendment of Class E Airspace, Seward, NE Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), DOT. ACTION: Notice of proposed rulemaking (NPRM). AGENCY: This action proposes to modify Class E airspace extending up to 700 feet above the surface at Seward Municipal Airport, Seward, NE., to accommodate new standard instrument approach procedures for instrument flight rules (IFR) operations at the airport. This action is necessary due to the decommissioning of the Seward non directional radio beacon (NDB), and cancellation of NDB approach, and would enhance the safety and management of IFR operations at the airport. SUMMARY: Comments must be received on or before September 5, 2017. ADDRESSES: Send comments on this proposal to the U.S. Department of Transportation, Docket Operations, 1200 New Jersey Avenue SE., West Building Ground Floor, Room W12–140, Washington, DC 20590; telephone (202) 366–9826, or 1–800–647–5527. You must identify FAA Docket No. FAA– 2017–0354 and Airspace Docket No. 17– ACE–8, at the beginning of your comments. You may also submit comments through the Internet at http:// www.regulations.gov. You may review the public docket containing the proposal, any comments received, and any final disposition in person in the Dockets Office between 9:00 a.m. and 5:00 p.m., Monday through Friday, except federal holidays. FAA Order 7400.11A, Airspace Designations and Reporting Points, and subsequent amendments can be viewed online at http://www.faa.gov/air_traffic/ publications/. For further information, you can contact the Airspace Policy Group, Federal Aviation Administration, 800 Independence Avenue SW., Washington, DC 20591; telephone: (202) 267–8783. The Order is also available for inspection at the National Archives and Records Administration (NARA). For information on the availability of FAA Order 7400.11A at NARA, call (202) 741–6030, or go to http:// www.archives.gov/federal_register/ DATES: PO 00000 Frm 00005 Fmt 4702 Sfmt 4702 33833 code_of_federal-regulations/ibr_ locations.html. FAA Order 7400.11A, Airspace Designations and Reporting Points, is published yearly and effective on September 15. FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Walter Tweedy (prepare by Ron Laster), Federal Aviation Administration, Operations Support Group, Central Service Center, 10101 Hillwood Parkway, Fort Worth, TX 76177; telephone (817) 222–5802. SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: Authority for This Rulemaking The FAA’s authority to issue rules regarding aviation safety is found in Title 49 of the United States Code. Subtitle I, Section 106 describes the authority of the FAA Administrator. Subtitle VII, Aviation Programs, describes in more detail the scope of the agency’s authority. This rulemaking is promulgated under the authority described in Subtitle VII, Part A, Subpart I, Section 40103. Under that section, the FAA is charged with prescribing regulations to assign the use of airspace necessary to ensure the safety of aircraft and the efficient use of airspace. This regulation is within the scope of that authority as it would amend controlled airspace in Class E. Comments Invited Interested parties are invited to participate in this proposed rulemaking by submitting such written data, views, or arguments, as they may desire. Comments that provide the factual basis supporting the views and suggestions presented are particularly helpful in developing reasoned regulatory decisions on the proposal. Comments are specifically invited on the overall regulatory, aeronautical, economic, environmental, and energy-related aspects of the proposal. Communications should identify both docket numbers and be submitted in triplicate to the address listed above. Commenters wishing the FAA to acknowledge receipt of their comments on this notice must submit with those comments a self-addressed, stamped postcard on which the following statement is made: ‘‘Comments to Docket No. FAA–2017–0354/Airspace Docket No. 17–ACE–8.’’ The postcard will be date/time stamped and returned to the commenter. All communications received before the specified closing date for comments will be considered before taking action on the proposed rule. The proposal contained in this notice may be changed in light of the comments received. A E:\FR\FM\21JYP1.SGM 21JYP1

Agencies

[Federal Register Volume 82, Number 139 (Friday, July 21, 2017)]
[Proposed Rules]
[Pages 33829-33833]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Publishing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 2017-15305]


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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.

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Federal Register / Vol. 82, No. 139 / Friday, July 21, 2017 / 
Proposed Rules

[[Page 33829]]



DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE

Agricultural Marketing Service

7 CFR Part 986

[Doc. No. AMS-SC-17-0032, SC17-986-2 PR]


Pecans Grown in the States of Alabama, Arkansas, Arizona, 
California, Florida, Georgia, Kansas, Louisiana, Missouri, Mississippi, 
North Carolina, New Mexico, Oklahoma, South Carolina, and Texas; 
Establishment of Reporting Requirements and New Information Collection

AGENCY: Agricultural Marketing Service, USDA.

ACTION: Proposed rule.

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

SUMMARY: This proposed rule invites comments on the establishment of 
reporting requirements under the Federal marketing order for pecans 
(order). The American Pecan Council (Council) locally administers the 
order and is comprised of growers and handlers of pecans operating 
within the production area and a public member. This action would 
require all pecan handlers to submit two forms to the Council: One for 
inter-handler transfers and another that includes year-end inventory 
and pecans handled throughout the year. The Council would use this 
information to facilitate assessment collection and provide valuable 
reports to the industry, including the annual marketing policy required 
by the order. This proposal also announces the Agricultural Marketing 
Service's (AMS) intention to request approval from the Office of 
Management and Budget (OMB) of a new information collection.

DATES: Comments must be received by September 19, 2017. Pursuant to the 
Paperwork Reduction Act, comments on the information collection burden 
must be received by September 19, 2017.

ADDRESSES: Interested persons are invited to submit written comments 
concerning this proposal. Comments must be sent to the Docket Clerk, 
Marketing Order and Agreement Division, Specialty Crops Program, AMS, 
USDA, 1400 Independence Avenue SW., STOP 0237, Washington, DC 20250-
0237; Fax: (202) 720-8938; or Internet: http://www.regulations.gov. 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 in the Office of the Docket Clerk during regular 
business hours, or can be viewed at: http://www.regulations.gov. All 
comments submitted in response to this proposal will be included in the 
record and will be made available to the public. Please be advised that 
the identity of the individuals or entities submitting the comments 
will be made public on the Internet at the address provided above.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Jennie M. Varela, Marketing 
Specialist, or Christian D. Nissen, Regional Director, Southeast 
Marketing Field Office, Marketing Order and Agreement Division, 
Specialty Crops Program, AMS, USDA; Telephone: (863) 324-3375, Fax: 
(863) 291-8614, or Email: Jennie.Varela@ams.usda.gov or 
Christian.Nissen@ams.usda.gov.
    Small businesses may request information on complying with this 
regulation by contacting Richard Lower, Marketing Order and Agreement 
Division, Specialty Crops Program, AMS, USDA, 1400 Independence Avenue 
SW., STOP 0237, Washington, DC 20250-0237; Telephone: (202) 720-2491, 
Fax: (202) 720-8938, or Email: Richard.Lower@ams.usda.gov.

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: This proposal is issued under Marketing 
Agreement and Order No. 986, (7 CFR part 986), regulating the handling 
of pecans grown in the states of Alabama, Arkansas, Arizona, 
California, Florida, Georgia, Kansas, Louisiana, Missouri, Mississippi, 
North Carolina, New Mexico, Oklahoma, South Carolina, and Texas, 
hereinafter referred to as the ``order.'' The order is effective under 
the Agricultural Marketing Agreement Act of 1937, as amended (7 U.S.C. 
601-674), hereinafter referred to as the ``Act.''
    The Department of Agriculture (USDA) is issuing this proposed rule 
in conformance with Executive Orders 13563 and 13175.
    This action falls within a category of regulatory actions that the 
Office of Management and Budget (OMB) has exempted from Executive Order 
12866 review. Additionally, because this rule does not meet the 
definition of a significant regulatory action it does not trigger the 
requirements contained in Executive Order 13771. See OMB's Memorandum 
titled ``Interim Guidance Implementing Section 2 of the Executive Order 
of January 30, 2017 titled `Reducing Regulation and Controlling 
Regulatory Costs'[thinsp]'' (February 2, 2017).
    This proposed rule has been reviewed under Executive Order 12988, 
Civil Justice Reform. This proposed rule is not intended to have 
retroactive effect.
    The Act provides that administrative proceedings must be exhausted 
before parties may file suit in court. Under section 608c(15)(A) of the 
Act, any handler subject to an order may file with USDA a petition 
stating that the order, any provision of the order, or any obligation 
imposed in connection with the order is not in accordance with law and 
request a modification of the order or to be exempted therefrom. A 
handler is afforded the opportunity for a hearing on the petition. 
After the hearing, USDA would rule on the petition. The Act provides 
that the district court of the United States in any district in which 
the handler is an inhabitant, or has his or her principal place of 
business, has jurisdiction to review USDA's ruling on the petition, 
provided an action is filed not later than 20 days after the date of 
the entry of the ruling.
    This proposed rule would establish reporting requirements under the 
order. This action would require all pecan handlers to submit to the 
Council reports of inter-handler transfers of pecans, inventory, and a 
summary of pecans handled. This information would be used to facilitate 
assessment collection and provide valuable reports to the industry, 
including the annual marketing policy required by the order. This 
proposal was unanimously recommended by the Council at its April 17, 
2017, meeting.
    Section 986.61 of the order requires all handlers warehousing 
pecans as of August 31 be identified as the handler of those pecans and 
pay the assessment rate accordingly. Section 986.62 provides the 
Council, with the approval of the Secretary, authority to establish 
methods and procedures, including

[[Page 33830]]

necessary reports, to maintain accurate records for inter-handler 
transfers. Sections 986.75, 986.76, and 986.77 provide authority to 
prescribe reports of handler inventory, merchantable pecans handled, 
and pecans received by handlers, respectively. Section 986.78 further 
provides the Council, with the approval of the Secretary, authority to 
collect other reports and information from handlers needed to enable 
the Council to perform its duties. This proposed rule would utilize 
these authorities to establish new Sec. Sec.  986.162 and 986.175 under 
the rules and regulations of the order. These new sections would 
require handlers of pecans to report to the Council any inter-handler 
transfers, and the volume of shelled, inshell, and total volume of 
pecans handled each fiscal year by type using specific Council forms.
    At its November 16, 2016 meeting, the first meeting following the 
order's promulgation, the Council discussed its initial budget, 
assessment rates, and necessary reporting requirements in order to set 
up a program that is efficient and responsive to industry needs. During 
these discussions, the Council established a Statistics and Reporting 
Committee (Committee) to develop reporting requirements.
    Members of the Committee discussed the reporting needs of the 
industry, reviewed examples of reporting forms from other marketing 
orders, and met and worked with the staff of another marketing order in 
developing the proposed reporting requirements. The Committee also 
worked with USDA to ensure the recommended information collection would 
provide the information necessary to facilitate the administration of 
the order.
    At its February 23, 2017 meeting, the Council reviewed drafts of 
seven reporting forms as developed and recommended by the Committee. 
The Council expressed its interest in having as much electronic 
reporting as possible, but recognized that many handlers may prefer a 
paper submission. The Council also considered the timing of when forms 
would be due and submission dates that would work for all parts of the 
industry. After a thorough review and some modifications, seven forms 
were approved by the Council.
    At a meeting on April 17, 2017, the Council revisited the 
recommended reporting requirements and the accompanying forms. 
Acknowledging the industry was more than halfway through the fiscal 
year at that time, the Council took action to move forward with the 
minimum reports necessary to facilitate the collection of assessments 
and to provide the other information needed for the 2016-17 fiscal 
year. Specifically, the Council voted to utilize two forms for the 
current fiscal year, one focusing on inter-handler transfers, and one 
containing information regarding year-end inventory and pecans handled 
throughout the fiscal year. The Council agreed it still wanted to move 
forward with all seven forms for the 2017-18 fiscal year, but 
considered year-end reporting on two forms as the most viable option 
for this fiscal year. The remaining five forms will be proposed in a 
subsequent rulemaking action.
    This proposed rule would add two new reporting requirements and two 
new forms to the rules and regulations under the order by adding 
Sec. Sec.  986.162 and 986.175. The pecan industry includes a subset of 
handlers, defined in the order as accumulators, who compile pecans for 
the purpose of resale or transfer to another handler. Additionally, 
small handlers may also sell or transfer pecans to other handlers. 
During the formal rulemaking hearing, the industry expressed concern 
that it may be difficult to track pecans moved through accumulators or 
transferred between handlers. Further, some handlers and accumulators 
that are small operations may find reporting, recordkeeping, and paying 
assessments burdensome.
    The report of inter-handler transfers would include information on 
the month of transfer, type of pecans transferred, the volume 
transferred, the amount of assessments owed on the pecans transferred, 
identification information and signatures of the two handlers involved, 
and whether the transferring handler or receiving handler would be 
responsible for reporting and paying the assessments. This report would 
help ensure that transferred pecans are not counted twice for volume 
reporting purposes and would help facilitate the collection of 
assessments. It would also allow receiving handlers to assume the 
reporting burden from smaller entities and ensure payment of 
corresponding assessments.
    The Council selected the tenth day of the month following the month 
of transfer as the due date for reports of inter-handler transfers. 
Should the tenth day of the month fall on a weekend or holiday, reports 
would be due by the first business day following the tenth day of the 
month. However, given that the current season began October 1, 2016, 
for the 2016-17 fiscal year, all inter-handler transfer forms would 
need to be submitted by Monday, September 11, 2017. For subsequent 
fiscal years, reports of inter-handler transfers would be due on a 
monthly basis as specified above.
    In order to correctly collect assessments, provide industry data, 
and complete a marketing policy for the coming fiscal year, the Council 
requires accurate reports of what has been handled and what is in 
inventory going into the next fiscal year. Based on Council 
discussions, it is also important for the industry to know the variety 
and form of the pecan in inventory. This information would be vital to 
the industry as it enters the next harvest, as the amount and type of 
inventory impacts prices of the new crop. Collection of this data was 
one of the industry's goals in promulgating the order, as currently 
there is no source for this type of information across the 15-state 
production area. This information would be captured in the year-end 
inventory report.
    The year-end inventory report would include information on the 
handler submitting the form, total pounds by type of pecans inshell and 
shelled in inventory, inventory committed but not shipped for both 
export and domestic, and any uncommitted inventory. It would also 
include information on pecans handled throughout the year, as well as 
data for total inventory including both shelled and inshell, with 
shelled volume converted to an inshell basis using the conversion 
specified in the order (volume shelled x 2). In addition, it would 
include information regarding total assessments owed, assessments paid 
to date, and remaining assessments due for that handler.
    The order specifies that on August 31 of each year, every handler 
warehousing inshell pecans shall be identified as the first handler of 
those pecans and shall be required to pay the required assessment rate. 
The order also specifies that the marketing policy include an estimate 
of the handler inventory as of August 31. Consequently, the Council 
selected September 10 as the due date for the year-end inventory 
report, or the first business day following the tenth of September 
should the tenth fall on a weekend or a holiday. The Council believes 
this would give all handlers sufficient time to submit the information 
to the Council after August 31. Further, handlers would be required to 
pay to the Council all remaining unpaid assessments by the due date of 
the year-end inventory report.
    This action would require all pecan handlers to provide the Council 
with reports of any inter-handler transfers, year-end inventory, and 
pecans handled throughout the year. This information would facilitate 
assessment collections, provide valuable reports to the industry,

[[Page 33831]]

and allow the Council to complete the annual marketing policy required 
by the order.
    The Council also recommended additional reporting requirements, 
which would be effective for the 2017-18 fiscal year. These 
requirements are being considered under a separate action.

Initial Regulatory Flexibility Analysis

    Pursuant to requirements set forth in the Regulatory Flexibility 
Act (RFA) (5 U.S.C. 601-612), the Agricultural Marketing Service (AMS) 
has considered the economic impact of this action on small entities. 
Accordingly, AMS has prepared this initial regulatory flexibility 
analysis.
    The purpose of the RFA is to determine whether the regulatory 
action will have a significant economic impact on a substantial number 
of small entities and to fit regulatory actions to the scale of 
businesses subject to such actions in order that small businesses will 
not be unduly or disproportionately burdened. Marketing orders issued 
pursuant to the Act, and the rules issued thereunder, are unique in 
that they are brought about through group action of essentially small 
entities acting on their own behalf.
    There are approximately 2,500 growers of pecans in the production 
area and approximately 250 handlers subject to regulation under the 
marketing order. Small agricultural growers are defined by the Small 
Business Administration as those having annual receipts less than 
$750,000, and small agricultural service firms are defined as those 
whose annual receipts are less than $7,500,000 (13 CFR 121.201).
    According to information from the National Agricultural Statistics 
Service (NASS), the average grower price for pecans during the 2015-16 
season was $2.20 per pound and 254 million pounds were utilized. The 
value for pecans that year totaled $558.8 million ($2.20 per pound 
multiplied by 254 million pounds). Taking the total value of production 
for pecans and dividing it by the total number of pecan growers 
provides an average return per grower of $223,520. Using the average 
price and utilization information, and assuming a normal bell-curve 
distribution of receipts among growers, the majority of growers receive 
less than $750,000 annually.
    Evidence presented at the formal rulemaking hearing indicates an 
average handler margin of $0.58 per pound. Adding this margin to the 
average grower price of $2.20 per pound of inshell pecans results in an 
estimated handler price of $2.78 per pound. With a total 2015 
production of 254 million pounds, ($2.78 per pound multiplied by 254 
million pounds) the total value of production in 2015 was $706.12 
million. Taking the total value of production for pecans and dividing 
it by the total number of pecan handlers provides an average return per 
handler of $2,824,480. Using this estimated price, the utilization 
volume, number of handlers, and assuming a normal bell-curve 
distribution of receipts among handlers, the majority of handlers have 
annual receipts of less than $7,500,000. Thus, the majority (a 
substantial number) of growers and handlers of pecans grown in the 
states of Alabama, Arkansas, Arizona, California, Florida, Georgia, 
Kansas, Louisiana, Missouri, Mississippi, North Carolina, New Mexico, 
Oklahoma, South Carolina, and Texas may be classified as small 
entities.
    This proposed rule would establish reporting requirements under the 
order. This action would require all pecan handlers to provide the 
Council with reports of any inter-handler transfers, year-end 
inventory, and pecans handled throughout the year. This information 
would facilitate the Council's collection of assessments and provide 
valuable reports to the industry. This rule would establish new 
Sec. Sec.  986.162 and 986.175 under the rules and regulations of the 
order. The authority for this action is provided for in Sec. Sec.  
986.62, 986.75, 986.76, 986.77, and 986.78 of the order.
    Requiring reports of transfers, handler inventory, and pecans 
handled throughout the year would impose an increase in the reporting 
burden on all pecan handlers. However, this data is already recorded 
and maintained by handlers as a part of their daily business. Handlers, 
regardless of size, should be able to readily access this information. 
Consequently, any additional costs associated with this change would be 
minimal (not significant) and apply equally to all handlers.
    This action should also help the entire industry by providing 
comprehensive data on pecans handled and year-end inventory. Collection 
of this data was one of the industry's goals in promulgating the order 
as there is no other source for this type of data. This information 
would help with marketing and planning for the industry, as well as 
provide important information for the collection of assessments and in 
preparing the annual marketing policy required by the order. The 
benefits of this rule are expected to be equally available to all pecan 
growers and handlers, regardless of their size.
    The Council discussed other alternatives to this action, including 
having additional reporting requirements, but determined that in order 
to efficiently carry out the objectives of the marketing order this 
first fiscal year, the information collected in these two reports would 
be sufficient. The Council also considered requiring the inter-handler 
transfer form to be submitted for each transfer. However, the Council 
determined that could be burdensome for some handlers and a monthly 
report would provide the necessary documentation. Therefore, the 
alternatives were rejected.
    This proposal would establish two new reporting requirements and 
would require two new Council forms. Therefore, this proposed rule 
would impose an increase in the reporting burden for all handlers, 
which is discussed in the Paperwork Reduction Act section of this 
document.
    As with all Federal marketing order programs, reports and forms are 
periodically reviewed to reduce information requirements and 
duplication by industry and public sector agencies. USDA has not 
identified any relevant Federal rules that duplicate, overlap, or 
conflict with this 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.
    Further, the Council's meetings were widely publicized throughout 
the pecan industry and all interested persons were invited to attend 
the meetings and participate in Council deliberations on all issues. 
Additionally, the Council's Committee meetings held February 23, 2017, 
and April 17, 2017, were also public meetings and all entities, both 
large and small, were able to express views on this issue. Finally, 
interested persons are invited to submit comments on this proposed 
rule, including the regulatory and information collection impacts of 
this action on small businesses.
    A small business guide on complying with fruit, vegetable, and 
specialty crop marketing agreements and orders may be viewed at: http://www.ams.usda.gov/rules-regulations/moa/small-businesses. Any questions 
about the compliance guide should be sent to Richard Lower at the 
previously-mentioned address in the FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT 
section.
    A 60-day comment period is provided to allow interested persons to 
respond to this proposal. All written comments

[[Page 33832]]

timely received will be considered before a final determination is made 
on this matter.

Paperwork Reduction Act

    In accordance with the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995 (44 U.S.C. 
chapter 35), this notice announces AMS's intent to request approval 
from the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) for a new information 
collection under OMB No. 0581--NEW. It will be merged with the forms 
currently approved under OMB No. 0581-0291 ``Federal Marketing Order 
for Pecans.''
    Title: Pecans Grown in the States of Alabama, Arkansas, Arizona, 
California, Florida, Georgia, Kansas, Louisiana, Missouri, Mississippi, 
North Carolina, New Mexico, Oklahoma, South Carolina, and Texas; 
Marketing Order No. 986.
    OMB Number: 0581--NEW.
    Type of Request: New Collection.
    Abstract: The information requirements in this request are 
essential to carry out the intent of the Act, to provide the 
respondents the type of service they request, and to administer the 
pecan marketing order program.
    On April 17, 2017, the Council unanimously recommended that all 
pecan handlers covered under the order provide the Council with a 
record of any inter-handler transfers by type and volume. This form, 
titled ``Report of Inter-Handler Transfers of Pecans'', would be 
submitted directly to the Council by handlers by the tenth day of the 
month following the transfer(s).
    This information collection would improve the accuracy of the 
Council's data collection by accounting for transferred pecans, and 
allow smaller handlers to transfer reporting and assessment obligations 
to another handler.
    The Council also recommended that all handlers covered under the 
order submit an annual report of inventory held by type as well as a 
summary of pecans handled for the year. This form, titled ``Year End 
Inventory Report'', would be submitted directly to the Council by 
handlers by September 10. This information collection will facilitate 
the Council's collection of assessments needed to administer the 
program and provide necessary data for the industry on volume handled. 
It would also provide the volume in inventory going into the next 
fiscal year, which would assist with market planning and provide 
information for the marketing policy required by the order.
    The information collected would only be used by authorized 
representatives of the USDA, including the AMS Specialty Crops Program 
regional and headquarters staff, and authorized employees of the 
Council. Authorized Council employees would be the primary users of the 
information, and the AMS would be the secondary users. The Council's 
staff would compile the information and utilize it to account for 
assessments due, to calculate total pecans handled, and to prepare a 
marketing policy as required under the order. All proprietary 
information would be kept confidential in accordance with the Act and 
the order.
    The proposed request for new information collection under the order 
is as follows:

Report of Inter-Handler Transfer of Pecans

    Estimate of Burden: Public reporting burden for this collection of 
information is estimated to be an average of 0.16 hours per response.
    Respondents: Handlers of pecans in Alabama, Arkansas, Arizona, 
California, Florida, Georgia, Kansas, Louisiana, Missouri, Mississippi, 
North Carolina, New Mexico, Oklahoma, South Carolina, and Texas.
    Estimated Number of Respondents: 30.
    Estimated Number of Responses per Respondent: 12.
    Estimated Total Annual Burden on Respondents: 60 hours.

Year End Inventory Report

    Estimate of Burden: Public reporting burden for this collection of 
information is estimated to be an average of 0.33 hours per response.
    Respondents: Handlers of pecans in Alabama, Arkansas, Arizona, 
California, Florida, Georgia, Kansas, Louisiana, Missouri, Mississippi, 
North Carolina, New Mexico, Oklahoma, South Carolina, and Texas.
    Estimated Number of Respondents: 250.
    Estimated Number of Responses per Respondent: 1.
    Estimated Total Annual Burden on Respondents: 125 hours.
    Comments are invited on: (1) Whether the proposed 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 the burden of the 
proposed collection of information, 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 the use of appropriate automated, electronic, 
mechanical, or other technological collection techniques or other forms 
of information technology.
    Comments should reference OMB No. 0581-NEW and the Marketing Order 
for Pecans Grown in the states of Alabama, Arkansas, Arizona, 
California, Florida, Georgia, Kansas, Louisiana, Missouri, Mississippi, 
North Carolina, New Mexico, Oklahoma, South Carolina, and Texas, and 
should be sent to the USDA in care of the Docket Clerk at the 
previously-mentioned address or at http://www.regulations.gov.
    All responses to this notice will be summarized and included in the 
request for OMB approval. All comments received will become a matter of 
public record and will be available for public inspection during 
regular business hours at the address of the Docket Clerk or at http://www.regulations.gov.
    If this proposed rule is finalized, this information collection 
will be merged with the forms currently approved under OMB No. 0581-
0291 ``Federal Marketing Order for Pecans.''

List of Subjects in 7 CFR Part 986

    Marketing agreements, Nuts, Pecans, Reporting and recordkeeping 
requirements.

    For the reasons set forth in the preamble, 7 CFR part 986 is 
proposed to be amended as follows:

PART 986--PECANS GROWN IN THE STATES OF ALABAMA, ARKANSAS, ARIZONA, 
CALIFORNIA, FLORIDA, GEORGIA, KANSAS, LOUISIANA, MISSOURI, 
MISSISSIPPI, NORTH CAROLINA, NEW MEXICO, OKLAHOMA, SOUTH CAROLINA, 
AND TEXAS

0
1. The authority citation for 7 CFR part 986 continues to read as 
follows:

    Authority:  7 U.S.C. 601-674.

0
2. Revise the heading ``Subpart B--[Reserved]'' to read ``Subpart--
Rules and Regulations.''
0
3. Add Sec.  986.162 to subpart B to read as follows:


Sec.  986.162  Inter-handler transfers.

    (a) Inter-handler transfers of inshell pecans, pursuant to Sec.  
986.62, shall be reported to the Council on APC Form 4. Handlers shall 
file reports by the tenth day of the month following the month of 
transfer. Should the tenth day of the month fall on a weekend or 
holiday, reports are due by the first business day following the tenth 
day of the month; Provided, that for the 2016-17 fiscal year, all 
inter-handler transfer forms

[[Page 33833]]

shall be submitted by Monday, September 11, 2017. The report shall 
contain the following information:
    (1) Month of transfer;
    (2) The type and weight of pecans transferred;
    (3) The amount of assessments owed on the pecans transferred;
    (4) The names and signatures for both the transferring and 
receiving handlers;
    (5) Handler assuming the reporting and assessment obligations on 
the pecans transferred.
0
4. Add Sec.  986.175 to read as follows:


Sec.  986.175  Handler inventory.

    (a) Handlers shall submit to the Council a year-end inventory 
report following August 31 each fiscal year. Handlers shall file such 
reports by September 10. Should September 10 fall on a weekend, reports 
are due by the first business day following September 10. Such reports 
shall be reported to the Council on APC Form 7 and include:
    (1) The name and address of the handler;
    (2) The total weight and type of inshell pecans in inventory, 
regardless of country of origin;
    (3) The total weight and type of shelled pecans in inventory, 
regardless of country of origin;
    (4) The total weight and type of inshell pecans committed, not 
shipped, for export and domestic shipments, and any uncommitted 
inventory, regardless of country of origin;
    (5) The total weight and type of shelled pecans committed, not 
shipped, for export and domestic shipments, and any uncommitted 
inventory, regardless of country of origin;
    (6) The combined total inventory for inshell and shelled pecans 
calculated on an inshell basis, and combined weight committed, not 
shipped, for exports and domestic shipments, and any uncommitted 
inventory;
    (7) Total weight and type of domestic pecans handled for the fiscal 
year;
    (8) Total assessments owed, assessments paid to date, and remaining 
assessments due to be paid by the due date of the year-end inventory 
report for the fiscal year.

    Dated: July 17, 2017.
Bruce Summers,
Acting Administrator, Agricultural Marketing Service.
[FR Doc. 2017-15305 Filed 7-20-17; 8:45 am]
 BILLING CODE 3410-02-P