2018 Rates Charged for AMS Services, 22239-22243 [2018-10132]

Download as PDF 22239 Notices Federal Register Vol. 83, No. 93 Monday, May 14, 2018 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–18–0020] 2018 Rates Charged for AMS Services Agricultural Marketing Service, USDA. ACTION: Notice. AGENCY: The Agricultural Marketing Service (AMS) is announcing the 2018 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 2018 regular, overtime, holiday, and laboratory services rates will be applied at the beginning of the crop year, fiscal year or as required by law 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. This year the majority of AMS user fee rates will remain unchanged, with the exception of increases for meat, poultry and egg grading and the hourly rate for AMS’s Laboratory Approval Service. DATES: May 15, 2018. FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Charles Parrott, AMS, U.S. Department of Agriculture, Room 3070–S, 1400 Independence Ave. SW, Washington, DC 20250; telephone (202) 260–9144, fax (202) 692–0313, email charles.parrott@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 amozie on DSK3GDR082PROD with NOTICES SUMMARY: VerDate Sep<11>2014 18:02 May 11, 2018 Jkt 244001 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 2018 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. 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 or other PO 00000 Frm 00001 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 specifications; 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 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. In recent years, many buyers have begun to specifically require that their producers be certified to a Global Food Safety Initiative (GFSI) benchmarked scheme. At the request of industry, AMS is starting a new voluntary program that provides GFSI’s recognition of the USDA GAP audit verification program. This voluntary program will allow producers to use AMS’ trusted and proven services to gain wider market access. Accordingly, AMS is including its voluntary GFSI service audit fee in this notice. The fee includes the fixed cost to maintain GFSI recognition. 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): E:\FR\FM\14MYN1.SGM 14MYN1 22240 Federal Register / Vol. 83, No. 93 / Monday, May 14, 2018 / Notices (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 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. AMS adjusts the rates to cover all of its expenses and to provide for reasonable operating reserves. 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. 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. 2018 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, 2018. 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, 2018. 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 $2.30/bale X July 1, 2018. Form 1 Review (new sample submitted by licensed sampler). $2.30/bale X July 1, 2018. Form A Determinations (sample submitted by licensed warehouse). $2.30/bale X July 1, 2018. Form C Determinations (sample submitted by non-licensed entity; bale sampled under USDA supervision). $2.30/bale ........................ July 1, 2018. Form D Determination (sample submitted by owner or agent; classification represents sample only). $2.30/bale X July 1, 2018. Foreign Growth Classification (sample of foreign growth cotton submitted by owner or agent; classification represents sample only). amozie on DSK3GDR082PROD with NOTICES Form 1: Grading Services for Producers (submitted by licensed sampler). $6.00/sample X August 1, 2018. Arbitration (comparison of a sample to the official standards or a sample type). $6.00/sample X August 1, 2018. Practical Cotton Classing Exam (for non-USDA employees). Exam: $150/applicant Reexamination: $130/applicant X July 1, 2018. Special Sample Handling (return of samples per request). $0.50/sample X July 1, 2018. VerDate Sep<11>2014 18:02 May 11, 2018 Jkt 244001 PO 00000 Frm 00002 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 E:\FR\FM\14MYN1.SGM 14MYN1 22241 Federal Register / Vol. 83, No. 93 / Monday, May 14, 2018 / Notices 2018 RATES—Continued Regular Overtime Includes travel costs in rate Holiday Start date Electronic Copy of Classification Record ......................... $0.05/bale ($5.00/month minimum with any records received) X July 1, 2018. 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, 2018. Form R (reissuance of Form 1 classification only) ........... $0.15/bale or $5.00/page minimum X July 1, 2018. International Instrument Level Assessment ...................... $4.00/sample X July 1, 2018. 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, 2018. Non-resident and Intermittent Grading Service; State Graders; Equipment Review. 82.00 96.76 116.64 X Oct 1, 2018. Non-resident Services 6 p.m.–6 a.m. (10 percent night differential). 90.20 106.44 128.32 X Oct 1, 2018. Export Certificate Services ............................................... 82.00 N/A N/A ........................ Oct 1, 2018. Special Handling ............................................................... 41.00 N/A N/A ........................ Oct 1, 2018. Fax Charge ....................................................................... 4.00 N/A N/A ........................ Oct 1, 2018. Derogation Application ...................................................... 123.00 N/A N/A ........................ Oct 1, 2018. Specialty Crops 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 at Shipping Point Areas Schedule of Fees and Charges Quality and Condition Inspections for Whole Lots ........... $191.00 per lot ........................ Oct 1, 2018. Quality and Condition Half Lot or Condition-Only Inspections for Whole Lots. $159.00 per lot ........................ Oct 1, 2018. Condition—Half Lot ........................................................... $146.00 per lot ........................ Oct 1, 2018. Quality and Condition or Condition-Only Inspections for Additional Lots of the Same Product. $87.00 per lot ........................ Oct 1, 2018. Dockside Inspections—Each package weighing < 30 lbs. $0.044 per pkg. ........................ Oct 1, 2018. Dockside Inspections—Each package weighing > 30 lbs. $0.068 per pkg. ........................ Oct 1, 2018. Charge per Individual Product for Dockside Inspection ... $174.00 per lot ........................ Oct 1, 2018. Charge per Each Additional Lot of the Same Product ..... $79.00 per lot ........................ Oct 1, 2018. ........................ Oct 1, 2018. Inspections for All Hourly Work ........................................ $85.00 $112.00 $148.00 $108.00 ........................ Oct 1, 2018. Audit Services—State ....................................................... $108.00 ........................ Oct 1, 2018. GFSI Certification Fee ...................................................... amozie on DSK3GDR082PROD with NOTICES Audit Services—Federal ................................................... $250 per audit ........................ Oct 1, 20 7 CFR Part 52—Processed Fruits and Vegetables, Processed Products Thereof, and Other Processed Food Products Subpart—Regulations Governing Inspection and Certification; §§ 52.41–52.51 Fees and Charges Lot Inspections .................................................................. $75.00 $95.00 $116.00 X Oct 1, 2018. In-plant Inspections Under Annual Contract (year-round) 72.00 92.00 112.00 X Oct 1, 2018. VerDate Sep<11>2014 18:02 May 11, 2018 Jkt 244001 PO 00000 Frm 00003 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 E:\FR\FM\14MYN1.SGM 14MYN1 22242 Federal Register / Vol. 83, No. 93 / Monday, May 14, 2018 / Notices 2018 RATES—Continued Regular Additional Graders (in-plant) or Less Than Year-Round .. Overtime 83.00 106.00 Includes travel costs in rate Holiday 128.00 Start date X Oct 1, 2018. Audit Services—Federal ................................................... $108.00 ........................ Oct 1, 2018. Audit Services—State ....................................................... $108.00 ........................ Oct 1, 2018. GFSI Certification Fee ...................................................... $250 per audit ........................ Oct 1, 2018. 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 ........................................................ $74.00 $91.00 $109.00 X Oct 1, 2018. Non-commitment Grading ................................................. 99.00 115.00 134.00 ........................ Oct 1, 2018. Night Differential (6 p.m.–6 a.m.) ..................................... 81.00 100.00 120.00 X Oct 1, 2018. ........................ Oct 1, 2018. Oct Oct Oct Oct Oct Oct Oct 1, 2018. Jan 1, 2019. 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 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) ............................................... Resident, Night Differential (6 p.m.–6 a.m.) ..................... Resident, Sunday Differential ........................................... Resident, Sunday and Night Differential .......................... Fee Service (non-scheduled) ............................................ Audit Service ..................................................................... 1 $52.00 1 $69.00 1 $85.00 1 55.00 1 77.00 1 95.00 N/A N/A 134.00 ........................ X X X X ........................ ........................ $120.00 236.00 ........................ X 1 64.00 1 86.00 1 71.00 1 96.00 90.00 $108.00 111.00 ........................ 1, 1, 1, 1, 1, 1, 2018. 2018. 2018. 2018. 2018. 2018. 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 ............................................. Laboratory Approval Services 3 ........................................ $88.00 188.00 $104.00 212.00 7 CFR Part 75—Regulations for Inspection and Certification of Quality of Agricultural and Vegetable Seeds § 75.41 General Laboratory Testing ............................................................ $58.00 $86.00 $115.00 Administrative Fee ............................................................ $14.50 per certificate ........................ ........................ X Oct 1, 2018. ........................ Oct 1, 2018. amozie on DSK3GDR082PROD with NOTICES 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 Domestic Permissive Inspection and Certification (regrading of domestic tobacco for processing plants, retesting of imported tobacco, and grading tobacco for research stations). VerDate Sep<11>2014 18:02 May 11, 2018 Jkt 244001 PO 00000 Frm 00004 $55.00 Fmt 4703 $64.00 Sfmt 4703 $72.00 E:\FR\FM\14MYN1.SGM ........................ 14MYN1 July 1, 2018. 22243 Federal Register / Vol. 83, No. 93 / Monday, May 14, 2018 / Notices 2018 RATES—Continued Regular Overtime Includes travel costs in rate Holiday Start date Export Permissive Inspection and Certification (grading of domestic tobacco for manufacturers and dealers for duty drawback consideration). $0.0025/pound X July 1, 2018. Grading for Risk Management Agency (for Tobacco Crop Insurance Quality Adjustment determinations). $0.015/pound X July 1, 2018. 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, 2018. 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, 2018. Standards Course (training by USDA-certified instructor on tobacco grading procedures). $1,250.00/person ........................ July 1, 2018. Import Inspection and Certification (grading of imported tobacco for manufacturers and dealers). $0.0170/kg or $0.0080/pound X July 1, 2018. 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 8, 2018. Bruce Summers, Acting Administrator. [FR Doc. 2018–10132 Filed 5–11–18; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 3410–02–P DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE Agricultural Research Service Notice of Intent to Renew Information Collection, Correction AGENCY: Agricultural Research Service, USDA. ACTION: Notice and request for comment. The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) seeks comments on the intent of the USNA to renew an information collection that expires August 31, 2018. The information collection serves as a means to collect for certain use of the facilities, grounds, programs and services. This includes fees for educational programs and workshops and for use of the grounds and facilities, as well as for commercial photography and cinematography. Fees generated will be used to defray USNA expenses or to promote the missions of the USNA. DATES: Comments on this notice must be received by June 1, 2018 to be assured of consideration. amozie on DSK3GDR082PROD with NOTICES SUMMARY: VerDate Sep<11>2014 18:34 May 11, 2018 Jkt 244001 You may submit comments by any of the following methods: • Email: richard.olsen@ars.usda.gov. • Fax: 202–245–4514. • Mail: Director, U.S. National Arboretum, Northeast Area, Agricultural Research Service, 3501 New York Avenue NE, Washington, DC 20002. • Hand Delivery/Courier: Director, U.S. National Arboretum, Northeast Area, Agricultural Research Service, 3501 New York Avenue NE, Washington, DC 20002. ADDRESSES: Correction In the Federal Register of April 2, 2018, FR Doc. No. 63, page 13943, on page three, paras 5, 6, and 7 of the Supplement Information should read as follows: Estimate of Burden: 151 hours. Estimated Number of Responses: The USNA estimates 250 requests for the use of the facilities, 52 for photography and cinematography, and 1,800 educational programs and workshops registrations on an annual basis. Estimate of Total Annual Burden on Respondents: The total cost for responding is $5,422.41, for 151 hours of time at $35.91 per hour. Dated: April 24, 2018. Simon Y. Liu, Associate Administrator, ARS. [FR Doc. 2018–10196 Filed 5–11–18; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE P PO 00000 Frm 00005 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE Submission for OMB Review; Comment Request May 9, 2018. The Department of Agriculture will submit the following information collection requirement(s) to OMB for review and clearance under the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995, Public Law 104–13 on or after the date of publication of this notice. 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 should be addressed to: Desk Officer for Agriculture, Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs, Office of Management and Budget (OMB), New Executive Office Building, Washington, DC; New Executive Office Building, 725 17th Street NW, Washington, DC 20503. Commenters are encouraged to submit their comments to OMB via email to: E:\FR\FM\14MYN1.SGM 14MYN1

Agencies

[Federal Register Volume 83, Number 93 (Monday, May 14, 2018)]
[Notices]
[Pages 22239-22243]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Publishing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 2018-10132]


========================================================================
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. 83, No. 93 / Monday, May 14, 2018 / Notices

[[Page 22239]]



DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE

Agricultural Marketing Service

[Document No. AMS-LPS-18-0020]


2018 Rates Charged for AMS Services

AGENCY: Agricultural Marketing Service, USDA.

ACTION: Notice.

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

SUMMARY: The Agricultural Marketing Service (AMS) is announcing the 
2018 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 2018 
regular, overtime, holiday, and laboratory services rates will be 
applied at the beginning of the crop year, fiscal year or as required 
by law 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. This 
year the majority of AMS user fee rates will remain unchanged, with the 
exception of increases for meat, poultry and egg grading and the hourly 
rate for AMS's Laboratory Approval Service.

DATES: May 15, 2018.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Charles Parrott, AMS, U.S. Department 
of Agriculture, Room 3070-S, 1400 Independence Ave. SW, Washington, DC 
20250; telephone (202) 260-9144, fax (202) 692-0313, email 
[email protected].

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 2018 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. 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 or 
other specifications; 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 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.
    In recent years, many buyers have begun to specifically require 
that their producers be certified to a Global Food Safety Initiative 
(GFSI) benchmarked scheme. At the request of industry, AMS is starting 
a new voluntary program that provides GFSI's recognition of the USDA 
GAP audit verification program. This voluntary program will allow 
producers to use AMS' trusted and proven services to gain wider market 
access. Accordingly, AMS is including its voluntary GFSI service audit 
fee in this notice. The fee includes the fixed cost to maintain GFSI 
recognition.
    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):

[[Page 22240]]

    (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 
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.
    AMS adjusts the rates to cover all of its expenses and to provide 
for reasonable operating reserves. 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.
    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.

                                                                       2018 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 Contract (Grading                        $4.25/bale                                 X   August 1, 2018.
 services for samples submitted by CCC-licensed
 samplers).
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Transfer of Certification Data to New Owner or        $0.20/bale or $5.00 per page minimum                    X   August 1, 2018.
 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 Producers                             $2.30/bale                                 X   July 1, 2018.
 (submitted by licensed sampler).
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Form 1 Review (new sample submitted by licensed                    $2.30/bale                                 X   July 1, 2018.
 sampler).
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Form A Determinations (sample submitted by                         $2.30/bale                                 X   July 1, 2018.
 licensed warehouse).
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Form C Determinations (sample submitted by non-                    $2.30/bale                    ...............  July 1, 2018.
 licensed entity; bale sampled under USDA
 supervision).
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Form D Determination (sample submitted by owner                    $2.30/bale                                 X   July 1, 2018.
 or agent; classification represents sample
 only).
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Foreign Growth Classification (sample of                          $6.00/sample                                X   August 1, 2018.
 foreign growth cotton submitted by owner or
 agent; classification represents sample only).
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Arbitration (comparison of a sample to the                        $6.00/sample                                X   August 1, 2018.
 official standards or a sample type).
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Practical Cotton Classing Exam (for non-USDA                  Exam: $150/applicant                            X   July 1, 2018.
 employees).                                              Reexamination: $130/applicant
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Special Sample Handling (return of samples per                    $0.50/sample                                X   July 1, 2018.
 request).
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[[Page 22241]]

 
Electronic Copy of Classification Record.......     $0.05/bale ($5.00/month minimum with any                  X   July 1, 2018.
                                                                records received)
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Form A Rewrite (reissuance of Form 1, Form A,           $0.15/bale or $5.00/page minimum                      X   August 1, 2018.
 or Futures Certification data or combination).
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Form R (reissuance of Form 1 classification             $0.15/bale or $5.00/page minimum                      X   July 1, 2018.
 only).
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
International Instrument Level Assessment......                   $4.00/sample                                X   July 1, 2018.
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                                                       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 Service............          $76.00          $90.92         $107.24               X   Oct 1, 2018.
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Non-resident and Intermittent Grading Service;            82.00           96.76          116.64               X   Oct 1, 2018.
 State Graders; Equipment Review.
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Non-resident Services 6 p.m.-6 a.m. (10 percent           90.20          106.44          128.32               X   Oct 1, 2018.
 night differential).
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Export Certificate Services....................           82.00             N/A             N/A  ...............  Oct 1, 2018.
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Special Handling...............................           41.00             N/A             N/A  ...............  Oct 1, 2018.
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Fax Charge.....................................            4.00             N/A             N/A  ...............  Oct 1, 2018.
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Derogation Application.........................          123.00             N/A             N/A  ...............  Oct 1, 2018.
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                                                  Specialty Crops 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 Inspections for Whole                      $191.00 per lot                 ...............  Oct 1, 2018.
 Lots.
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Quality and Condition Half Lot or Condition-                     $159.00 per lot                 ...............  Oct 1, 2018.
 Only Inspections for Whole Lots.
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Condition--Half Lot............................                  $146.00 per lot                 ...............  Oct 1, 2018.
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Quality and Condition or Condition-Only                          $87.00 per lot                  ...............  Oct 1, 2018.
 Inspections for Additional Lots of the Same
 Product.
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Dockside Inspections--Each package weighing <                    $0.044 per pkg.                 ...............  Oct 1, 2018.
 30 lbs..
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Dockside Inspections--Each package weighing >                    $0.068 per pkg.                 ...............  Oct 1, 2018.
 30 lbs..
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Charge per Individual Product for Dockside                       $174.00 per lot                 ...............  Oct 1, 2018.
 Inspection.
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Charge per Each Additional Lot of the Same                       $79.00 per lot                  ...............  Oct 1, 2018.
 Product.
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Inspections for All Hourly Work................          $85.00         $112.00         $148.00  ...............  Oct 1, 2018.
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Audit Services--Federal........................                      $108.00                     ...............  Oct 1, 2018.
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Audit Services--State..........................                      $108.00                     ...............  Oct 1, 2018.
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
GFSI Certification Fee.........................                  $250 per audit                  ...............  Oct 1, 20
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
7 CFR Part 52--Processed Fruits and Vegetables, Processed Products Thereof, 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, 2018.
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
In-plant Inspections Under Annual Contract                72.00           92.00          112.00               X   Oct 1, 2018.
 (year-round).
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

[[Page 22242]]

 
Additional Graders (in-plant) or Less Than Year-          83.00          106.00          128.00               X   Oct 1, 2018.
 Round.
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Audit Services--Federal........................                      $108.00                     ...............  Oct 1, 2018.
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Audit Services--State..........................                      $108.00                     ...............  Oct 1, 2018.
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
GFSI Certification Fee.........................                  $250 per audit                  ...............  Oct 1, 2018.
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                                                 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.............................          $74.00          $91.00         $109.00               X   Oct 1, 2018.
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Non-commitment Grading.........................           99.00          115.00          134.00  ...............  Oct 1, 2018.
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Night Differential (6 p.m.-6 a.m.).............           81.00          100.00          120.00               X   Oct 1, 2018.
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
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, 2018.
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                                                      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\ $52.00      \1\ $69.00      \1\ $85.00               X   Oct 1, 2018.
Resident, Night Differential (6 p.m.-6 a.m.)...       \1\ 55.00       \1\ 77.00       \1\ 95.00               X   Oct 1, 2018.
Resident, Sunday Differential..................       \1\ 64.00       \1\ 86.00             N/A               X   Oct 1, 2018.
Resident, Sunday and Night Differential........       \1\ 71.00       \1\ 96.00             N/A               X   Oct 1, 2018.
Fee Service (non-scheduled)....................           90.00          111.00          134.00  ...............  Oct 1, 2018.
Audit Service..................................         $108.00  ..............  ..............  ...............  Oct 1, 2018.
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                                               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, 2018.
Laboratory Approval Services \3\...............          188.00          212.00          236.00               X   Jan 1, 2019.
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
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, 2018.
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Administrative Fee.............................      $14.50 per  ..............  ..............  ...............  Oct 1, 2018.
                                                    certificate
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                                                      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 and                       $55.00          $64.00          $72.00  ...............  July 1, 2018.
 Certification (re-grading of domestic tobacco
 for processing plants, retesting of imported
 tobacco, and grading tobacco for research
 stations).
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

[[Page 22243]]

 
Export Permissive Inspection and Certification                    $0.0025/pound                               X   July 1, 2018.
 (grading of domestic tobacco for manufacturers
 and dealers for duty drawback consideration).
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Grading for Risk Management Agency (for Tobacco                   $0.015/pound                                X   July 1, 2018.
 Crop Insurance Quality Adjustment
 determinations).
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Pesticide Test Sampling (collection of                     $0.0065/kg or $0.0029/pound                        X   July 1, 2018.
 certified tobacco sample and shipment to AMS
 National Science Laboratory for testing).
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Pesticide Retest Sampling (collection of                 $115.00/sample and $55.00/hour                       X   July 1, 2018.
 certified tobacco sample from a previously
 sampled lot for re-testing at the AMS National
 Science Laboratory; fee includes shipping).
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Standards Course (training by USDA-certified                    $1,250.00/person                 ...............  July 1, 2018.
 instructor on tobacco grading procedures).
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Import Inspection and Certification (grading of            $0.0170/kg or $0.0080/pound                        X   July 1, 2018.
 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 8, 2018.
Bruce Summers,
Acting Administrator.
[FR Doc. 2018-10132 Filed 5-11-18; 8:45 am]
BILLING CODE 3410-02-P