Olives Grown in California; Establish Procedures To Meet Via Electronic Communications, 57691-57693 [2018-25006]

Download as PDF 57691 Proposed Rules Federal Register Vol. 83, No. 222 Friday, November 16, 2018 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 932 [Doc. No. AMS–SC–18–0061; SC18–932–1 PR] Olives Grown in California; Establish Procedures To Meet Via Electronic Communications Agricultural Marketing Service, USDA. ACTION: Proposed rule. AGENCY: This proposed rule invites comments on a recommendation made by the California Olive Committee (Committee) to establish procedures to conduct meetings and voting using electronic means of communication. DATES: Comments must be received by December 17, 2018. ADDRESSES: Interested persons are invited to submit written comments concerning this proposed rule. 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. 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 proposed rule 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: Peter Sommers, Marketing Specialist, or Terry Vawter, Senior Marketing Specialist, California Marketing Field Office, Marketing Order and Agreement tkelley on DSKBCP9HB2PROD with PROPOSALS SUMMARY: VerDate Sep<11>2014 16:48 Nov 15, 2018 Jkt 247001 Division, Specialty Crops Program, AMS, USDA; Telephone: (559) 487– 5901, Fax: (559) 487–5906, or Email: PeterR.Sommers@usda.gov or Terry.Vawter@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@usda.gov. SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: This action, pursuant to 5 U.S.C. 553, proposes to amend regulations issued to carry out a marketing order as defined in 7 CFR 900.2(j). This proposed rule is issued under Marketing Agreement and Order No. 932, as amended (7 CFR part 932), regulating the handling of olives grown in California. Part 932 (referred to as 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 California Olive Committee (Committee) locally administers the Order and is comprised of producers and handlers of olives operating within the area of production. 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) exempted from Executive Order 12866 review. Additionally, because this proposed 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 PO 00000 Frm 00001 Fmt 4702 Sfmt 4702 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. Such 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. On May 17, 2018 (83 FR 22831), the Agricultural Marketing Service published a final rule amending 7 CFR part 900, the general regulations for federal fruit, vegetable, and specialty crop marketing agreements and orders, to authorize the use of electronic means of communication for meetings and voting. During a meeting on June 13, 2018, the Committee unanimously recommended adoption of modern communication methods to conduct Committee meetings, as outlined in the Federal Register volume referenced above. On August 17, 2018, the Committee unanimously approved the recommended procedures for the use of communication technology. This proposed rule would establish those procedures in a new section § 932.136, Use of communication technology in Subpart B—Administrative Requirements. The Order currently states that the Committee may only meet in assembled, in-person, meetings and that voting may only be conducted at meetings or via mail or telegraph. Such limitations present logistical problems for many Committee members since membership is widely distributed across California. Some members travel over 400 miles to attend a Committee meeting, thus resulting in lost work hours for the members and increased costs for the Committee. Allowing the Committee to conduct meetings via electronic means of communication would likely result in increased member participation and productivity at a reduced cost, as well as greater potential for meeting quorum and voting requirements. The Committee recommended that audio or audiovisual technology (AVT) E:\FR\FM\16NOP1.SGM 16NOP1 57692 Federal Register / Vol. 83, No. 222 / Friday, November 16, 2018 / Proposed Rules tkelley on DSKBCP9HB2PROD with PROPOSALS that facilitates open communication and effectively assembles Committee members be used to conduct meetings by AVT or partial in-person meetings (meaning some members not present participate in an in-person meeting via technology). These meetings would be subject to the same quorum and voting requirements currently in effect for inperson meetings under § 932.36. These requirements define a quorum as a majority of the 16-member Committee, of which at least half are producer members and half are handler members. Voting requirements state that a passing recommendation must receive a majority vote, with at least half of the voting members representing producers and half representing handlers. For recommendations regarding grade and size, a minimum of ten votes representing five producer and five handler members are necessary for approval. The requirements further state that issues to be voted on shall be explained accurately and fully, and that all votes cast will be confirmed through a roll call. Regarding casting votes electronically or by email, the Committee proposed that such votes be subject to the same requirements currently in effect for mail voting in § 932.36. These requirements state that advanced notice, as well as an accurate, full and identical description of the issues to be voted on, be given to all members. For a recommendation to pass, at least 14 affirmative votes representing seven producer and seven handler members are required. The Committee recommended these changes to provide an opportunity to conduct meetings more efficiently and cost-effectively; use of audio and or audiovisual communication technology would result in time and cost savings to the Committee and its members by allowing for meetings to be conducted with all or a portion of its membership attending by audio and or AVT. 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 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 rules issued thereunder, are unique in that they are brought about through group action of essentially VerDate Sep<11>2014 16:48 Nov 15, 2018 Jkt 247001 small entities acting on their own behalf. There are approximately 1,100 producers of olives in the production area and two handlers subject to regulation under the Order. Small agricultural producers are defined by the Small Business Administration (SBA) 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). Based on National Agricultural Statistics Service (NASS) information, the average price to producers for the 2017 crop year was $974.00 per ton, and total assessable volume for the 2017 crop year was 83,799 tons. Based on production, price paid to producers, and the total number of California olive producers, the average annual producer revenue is less than $750,000 ($974.00 times 83,799 tons equals $81,620,226, divided by 1,100 producers equals an average annual producer revenue of $74,200). Based on Committee data, both handlers may be classified as large entities under the SBA’s definitions because their annual receipts are greater than $7,500,000. This proposed rule would not impose additional costs on handlers or producers of any size. Committee members are expected to see a reduction in their travel expenses and time lost from work in order to attend Committee meetings in person. Thus, this proposed rule would reduce the cost burden on both handlers and producers. The Committee considered the alternative of making no changes to the regulations. However, it was determined that by taking no action, the Committee would be unnecessarily limiting the participation of some members due to time constraints and travel considerations. Therefore, the Committee determined that recommending this change was in the best interest of the Committee, its members, and the industry. Like all Committee meetings, the June 13, 2018, meeting was public and was widely publicized throughout the production area. All entities, both large and small, were able to express their views on this issue and participate in Committee deliberations. Following the meeting, ballots along with the proposed procedures were sent to all Committee members on July 31, 2018, and the mail vote concluded on August 17, 2018. The proposal received unanimous support. Interested persons are invited to submit comments on this proposed rule, including the regulatory and PO 00000 Frm 00002 Fmt 4702 Sfmt 4702 information collection impacts of this action on small businesses. In accordance with the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995 (44 U.S.C. Chapter 35), the Order’s information collection requirements have been previously approved by OMB and assigned OMB No. 0581–0178 Vegetable Crops. No changes in those requirements would be necessary as a result of this action. Should any changes become necessary, they would be submitted to OMB for approval. This proposed rule would impose no additional reporting or recordkeeping requirements on either small or large California olive handlers. 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. 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. USDA has not identified any relevant Federal rules that duplicate, overlap, or conflict with this action. 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 30-day comment period is provided to allow interested persons to respond to this proposed rule. All written comments timely received will be considered before a final determination is made on this matter. List of Subjects in 7 CFR Part 932 Marketing agreements, Olives, Reporting and recordkeeping requirements. For the reasons set forth in the preamble, 7 CFR part 932 is proposed to be amended as follows: PART 932—OLIVES GROWN IN CALIFORNIA 1. The authority citation for 7 CFR part 932 continues to read as follows: ■ Authority: 7 U.S.C. 601–674. 2. Add § 932.136 to subpart B to read as follows: ■ E:\FR\FM\16NOP1.SGM 16NOP1 Federal Register / Vol. 83, No. 222 / Friday, November 16, 2018 / Proposed Rules § 932.136 Use of communication technology. The Committee may conduct meetings by any means of audio and/or audiovisual communication technology available that effectively assembles members and alternates, and facilitates open communication; Provided, That, quorum and voting requirements specified in § 932.36 for physically assembled meetings shall apply. The Committee may also vote electonically; Provided, That, such voting shall be subject to the same requirements specified for mail voting in § 932.36. Dated: November 9, 2018. Bruce Summers, Administrator, Agricultural Marketing Service. [FR Doc. 2018–25006 Filed 11–15–18; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 3410–02–P SMALL BUSINESS ADMINISTRATION 13 CFR Parts 103, 120, and 121 RIN 3245–AG74 Express Loan Programs; Affiliation Standards U.S. Small Business Administration. ACTION: Proposed rule; extension of comment period. AGENCY: On September 28, 2018, the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) published a notice of proposed rulemaking in the Federal Register to solicit public comments on, among other things, Express loan programs and affiliation standards. This document announces the extension of the current comment period for an additional 15 business days until December 18, 2018. DATES: The comment period for the notice of proposed rulemaking published on September 28, 2018 (83 FR 49001) is extended until December 18, 2018. ADDRESSES: You may submit comments, identified by RIN 3245–AG74, by any of the following methods: (1) Federal Rulemaking Portal: http:// www.regulations.gov. Follow the instructions for submitting comments; or (2) Mail/Hand Delivery/Courier: U.S. Small Business Administration, Attn: Kimberly Chuday or Thomas Heou, Office of Financial Assistance, 409 Third Street SW, 8th Floor, Washington, DC 20416. SBA will post all comments to this notice of proposed rulemaking on http://www.regulations.gov. If you wish to submit confidential business information (CBI) as defined in the User Notice at http://www.regulations.gov, tkelley on DSKBCP9HB2PROD with PROPOSALS SUMMARY: VerDate Sep<11>2014 16:48 Nov 15, 2018 Jkt 247001 you must submit such information to the U.S. Small Business Administration, Attn: Kimberly Chuday or Thomas Heou, Office of Financial Assistance, 409 Third Street SW, 8th Floor, Washington, DC 20416. Highlight the information that you consider to be CBI and explain why you believe SBA should hold this information as confidential. SBA will review your information and determine whether it will make the information public. FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Robert Carpenter, Acting Chief, 7(a) Policy & Program Branch, U.S. Small Business Administration, Office of Financial Assistance, 409 3rd Street SW, 8th Floor, Washington, DC 20416; telephone: (202) 619–1654; email: robert.carpenter@sba.gov. SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: On September 28, 2018, SBA published a notice of proposed rulemaking at 83 FR 49001 to solicit comments on the Express loan program, affiliation standards, and other miscellaneous amendments to SBA business loan programs. This proposed rulemaking, which is identified by RIN 3245–AG74, is also available at https:// www.regulations.gov/ searchResults?rpp=25&po=0&s=SBA2018-0009&fp=true&ns=true. SBA received a formal request from several trade associations that represent participants in SBA’s business loan programs to extend the comment period on this proposed rulemaking for an additional 60 days. After considering the request, SBA decided to extend the comment period an additional 15 business days until December 18, 2018. This extension will give commenters additional time to consider the proposed rulemaking and submit comments. Dianna L. Seaborn, Director, Office of Financial Assistance. [FR Doc. 2018–25037 Filed 11–15–18; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 8025–01–P FEDERAL TRADE COMMISSION 16 CFR Part 609 RIN 3084–AB54] Military Credit Monitoring Federal Trade Commission. Notice of proposed rulemaking; request for public comment. AGENCY: ACTION: The Federal Trade Commission (‘‘FTC’’ or ‘‘Commission’’) is publishing for comment a proposed rule to implement the credit monitoring provisions applicable to active duty SUMMARY: PO 00000 Frm 00003 Fmt 4702 Sfmt 4702 57693 military consumers in section 302 of the Economic Growth, Regulatory Relief, and Consumer Protection Act, which amends the Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA). That section requires nationwide consumer reporting agencies to provide a free electronic credit monitoring service to active duty military consumers, subject to certain conditions. The proposed rule defines ‘‘electronic credit monitoring service,’’ ‘‘contact information,’’ ‘‘material additions or modifications to the file of a consumer,’’ and ‘‘appropriate proof of identity,’’ among other terms. It also contains requirements on how nationwide consumer reporting agencies must verify that an individual is an active duty military consumer. DATES: Written comments must be received on or before January 7, 2019. ADDRESSES: Interested parties may file a comment online or on paper by following the Request for Comment part of the SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION section below. Write ‘‘Military Credit Monitoring Rulemaking, Matter No. R811007’’ on your comment and file your comment online at https:// ftcpublic.commentworks.com/ftc/ militarycreditmonitoringnprm following the instructions on the web-based form. If you prefer to file your comment on paper, mail your comment to the following address: Federal Trade Commission, Office of the Secretary, 600 Pennsylvania Avenue NW, Suite CC–5610 (Annex B), Washington, DC 20580, or deliver your comment to the following address: Federal Trade Commission, Office of the Secretary, Constitution Center, 400 7th Street SW, 5th Floor, Suite 5610 (Annex B), Washington, DC 20024. FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Amanda Koulousias (202–326–3334), Division of Privacy and Identity Protection, Bureau of Consumer Protection, Federal Trade Commission, 600 Pennsylvania Avenue NW, Washington, DC 20580. SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: I. Background The Economic Growth, Regulatory Relief, and Consumer Protection Act (‘‘the Act’’) was signed into law on May 24, 2018. Public Law 115–174. The Act, among other things, amends section 605A of the FCRA, 15 U.S.C. 1681c–1 to add a section 605A(k). Section 605A(k)(2) requires that nationwide consumer reporting agencies provide free electronic credit monitoring services to active duty military consumers. Section 605A(k)(3) of the FCRA requires the Commission to issue a E:\FR\FM\16NOP1.SGM 16NOP1

Agencies

[Federal Register Volume 83, Number 222 (Friday, November 16, 2018)]
[Proposed Rules]
[Pages 57691-57693]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Publishing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 2018-25006]


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

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

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


Federal Register / Vol. 83, No. 222 / Friday, November 16, 2018 / 
Proposed Rules

[[Page 57691]]



DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE

Agricultural Marketing Service

7 CFR Part 932

[Doc. No. AMS-SC-18-0061; SC18-932-1 PR]


Olives Grown in California; Establish Procedures To Meet Via 
Electronic Communications

AGENCY: Agricultural Marketing Service, USDA.

ACTION: Proposed rule.

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

SUMMARY: This proposed rule invites comments on a recommendation made 
by the California Olive Committee (Committee) to establish procedures 
to conduct meetings and voting using electronic means of communication.

DATES: Comments must be received by December 17, 2018.

ADDRESSES: Interested persons are invited to submit written comments 
concerning this proposed rule. 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. 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 
proposed rule 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: Peter Sommers, Marketing Specialist, 
or Terry Vawter, Senior Marketing Specialist, California Marketing 
Field Office, Marketing Order and Agreement Division, Specialty Crops 
Program, AMS, USDA; Telephone: (559) 487-5901, Fax: (559) 487-5906, or 
Email: [email protected] or [email protected].
    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: [email protected].

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: This action, pursuant to 5 U.S.C. 553, 
proposes to amend regulations issued to carry out a marketing order as 
defined in 7 CFR 900.2(j). This proposed rule is issued under Marketing 
Agreement and Order No. 932, as amended (7 CFR part 932), regulating 
the handling of olives grown in California. Part 932 (referred to as 
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 California Olive Committee (Committee) locally 
administers the Order and is comprised of producers and handlers of 
olives operating within the area of production.
    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) exempted from Executive Order 12866 review. 
Additionally, because this proposed 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. Such 
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.
    On May 17, 2018 (83 FR 22831), the Agricultural Marketing Service 
published a final rule amending 7 CFR part 900, the general regulations 
for federal fruit, vegetable, and specialty crop marketing agreements 
and orders, to authorize the use of electronic means of communication 
for meetings and voting.
    During a meeting on June 13, 2018, the Committee unanimously 
recommended adoption of modern communication methods to conduct 
Committee meetings, as outlined in the Federal Register volume 
referenced above. On August 17, 2018, the Committee unanimously 
approved the recommended procedures for the use of communication 
technology. This proposed rule would establish those procedures in a 
new section Sec.  932.136, Use of communication technology in Subpart 
B--Administrative Requirements.
    The Order currently states that the Committee may only meet in 
assembled, in-person, meetings and that voting may only be conducted at 
meetings or via mail or telegraph. Such limitations present logistical 
problems for many Committee members since membership is widely 
distributed across California. Some members travel over 400 miles to 
attend a Committee meeting, thus resulting in lost work hours for the 
members and increased costs for the Committee.
    Allowing the Committee to conduct meetings via electronic means of 
communication would likely result in increased member participation and 
productivity at a reduced cost, as well as greater potential for 
meeting quorum and voting requirements.
    The Committee recommended that audio or audiovisual technology 
(AVT)

[[Page 57692]]

that facilitates open communication and effectively assembles Committee 
members be used to conduct meetings by AVT or partial in-person 
meetings (meaning some members not present participate in an in-person 
meeting via technology). These meetings would be subject to the same 
quorum and voting requirements currently in effect for in-person 
meetings under Sec.  932.36. These requirements define a quorum as a 
majority of the 16-member Committee, of which at least half are 
producer members and half are handler members. Voting requirements 
state that a passing recommendation must receive a majority vote, with 
at least half of the voting members representing producers and half 
representing handlers. For recommendations regarding grade and size, a 
minimum of ten votes representing five producer and five handler 
members are necessary for approval. The requirements further state that 
issues to be voted on shall be explained accurately and fully, and that 
all votes cast will be confirmed through a roll call.
    Regarding casting votes electronically or by email, the Committee 
proposed that such votes be subject to the same requirements currently 
in effect for mail voting in Sec.  932.36. These requirements state 
that advanced notice, as well as an accurate, full and identical 
description of the issues to be voted on, be given to all members. For 
a recommendation to pass, at least 14 affirmative votes representing 
seven producer and seven handler members are required.
    The Committee recommended these changes to provide an opportunity 
to conduct meetings more efficiently and cost-effectively; use of audio 
and or audiovisual communication technology would result in time and 
cost savings to the Committee and its members by allowing for meetings 
to be conducted with all or a portion of its membership attending by 
audio and or AVT.

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 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 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 1,100 producers of olives in the production 
area and two handlers subject to regulation under the Order. Small 
agricultural producers are defined by the Small Business Administration 
(SBA) 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).
    Based on National Agricultural Statistics Service (NASS) 
information, the average price to producers for the 2017 crop year was 
$974.00 per ton, and total assessable volume for the 2017 crop year was 
83,799 tons. Based on production, price paid to producers, and the 
total number of California olive producers, the average annual producer 
revenue is less than $750,000 ($974.00 times 83,799 tons equals 
$81,620,226, divided by 1,100 producers equals an average annual 
producer revenue of $74,200). Based on Committee data, both handlers 
may be classified as large entities under the SBA's definitions because 
their annual receipts are greater than $7,500,000.
    This proposed rule would not impose additional costs on handlers or 
producers of any size. Committee members are expected to see a 
reduction in their travel expenses and time lost from work in order to 
attend Committee meetings in person. Thus, this proposed rule would 
reduce the cost burden on both handlers and producers.
    The Committee considered the alternative of making no changes to 
the regulations. However, it was determined that by taking no action, 
the Committee would be unnecessarily limiting the participation of some 
members due to time constraints and travel considerations. Therefore, 
the Committee determined that recommending this change was in the best 
interest of the Committee, its members, and the industry.
    Like all Committee meetings, the June 13, 2018, meeting was public 
and was widely publicized throughout the production area. All entities, 
both large and small, were able to express their views on this issue 
and participate in Committee deliberations. Following the meeting, 
ballots along with the proposed procedures were sent to all Committee 
members on July 31, 2018, and the mail vote concluded on August 17, 
2018. The proposal received unanimous support.
    Interested persons are invited to submit comments on this proposed 
rule, including the regulatory and information collection impacts of 
this action on small businesses.
    In accordance with the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995 (44 U.S.C. 
Chapter 35), the Order's information collection requirements have been 
previously approved by OMB and assigned OMB No. 0581-0178 Vegetable 
Crops. No changes in those requirements would be necessary as a result 
of this action. Should any changes become necessary, they would be 
submitted to OMB for approval.
    This proposed rule would impose no additional reporting or 
recordkeeping requirements on either small or large California olive 
handlers. 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.
    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.
    USDA has not identified any relevant Federal rules that duplicate, 
overlap, or conflict with this action.
    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 30-day comment period is provided to allow interested persons to 
respond to this proposed rule. All written comments timely received 
will be considered before a final determination is made on this matter.

List of Subjects in 7 CFR Part 932

    Marketing agreements, Olives, Reporting and recordkeeping 
requirements.

    For the reasons set forth in the preamble, 7 CFR part 932 is 
proposed to be amended as follows:

PART 932--OLIVES GROWN IN CALIFORNIA

0
1. The authority citation for 7 CFR part 932 continues to read as 
follows:

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

0
2. Add Sec.  932.136 to subpart B to read as follows:

[[Page 57693]]

Sec.  932.136  Use of communication technology.

    The Committee may conduct meetings by any means of audio and/or 
audiovisual communication technology available that effectively 
assembles members and alternates, and facilitates open communication; 
Provided, That, quorum and voting requirements specified in Sec.  
932.36 for physically assembled meetings shall apply. The Committee may 
also vote electonically; Provided, That, such voting shall be subject 
to the same requirements specified for mail voting in Sec.  932.36.

    Dated: November 9, 2018.
Bruce Summers,
Administrator, Agricultural Marketing Service.
[FR Doc. 2018-25006 Filed 11-15-18; 8:45 am]
BILLING CODE 3410-02-P