Egg Research and Promotion; Reapportionment, 62942-62945 [2020-19431]

Download as PDF 62942 Federal Register / Vol. 85, No. 194 / Tuesday, October 6, 2020 / Rules and Regulations PART 90—[Removed and Reserved] ■ 9. Remove and reserve part 90. PART 91—SERVICES AND GENERAL INFORMATION ■ 10. Revise § 91.1 to read as follows: § 91.1 General. This part consolidates the procedural and administrative rules of the Science and Technology Program of the Agricultural Marketing Service for conducting the analytical testing and laboratory audit verification and accreditation services. It also contains the fees and charges applicable to such services. ■ 11. Amend § 91.2 by revising the definition of applicant to read as follows: § 91.2 * * * * Applicant. Any individual or business requesting services provided by the Science and Technology (S&T) programs. * * * * * ■ 12. Amend § 91.4 by revising paragraph (c) to read as follows: Kinds of services. * * * * * (c) Agricultural Marketing Service Audit Verification and Accreditation Programs as described in 7 CFR 62.200. * * * * * ■ 13. Amend § 91.5 by: ■ a. Removing and reserving paragraph (a)(6); and ■ b. Revising paragraph (a)(8). The revision to read as follows: khammond on DSKJM1Z7X2PROD with RULES § 91.5 Where services are offered. (a) * * * (8) Laboratory Approval Service. The Laboratory Approval Service (LAS) provides technical, scientific, and quality assurance support services to Agency programs, other agencies within the USDA, and private entities. In addition, the LAS provides audit verification and approval or accreditation services, including laboratory approval and accreditation programs of Federal and State government laboratories and private/ commercial laboratories in support of domestic and international trade. The programs administered by LAS verify analyses of food and agricultural VerDate Sep<11>2014 16:34 Oct 05, 2020 Bruce Summers, Administrator, Agricultural Marketing Service. [FR Doc. 2020–19655 Filed 10–5–20; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE P DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE Agricultural Marketing Service Definitions. * § 91.4 products showing that said food and products meet country or customerspecific requirements and that the testing of marketed products is conducted by qualified and approved laboratories. The LAS is located and can be reached by mail at: USDA, AMS, S&T, Laboratory Approval Service, 1400 Independence Ave. SW, South Building, Mail Stop 0272, Washington, DC 20250– 0272. * * * * * Jkt 253001 7 CFR Part 1250 [Document No. AMS–LP–19–0113] Egg Research and Promotion; Reapportionment Agricultural Marketing Service, USDA. ACTION: Final rule. AGENCY: This final rule adjusts representation on the American Egg Board (Board), and outlines changes to geographic areas based on sustained changes in egg production in several States. The Egg Research and Promotion Order (Order) establishes a Board composed of 18 members. Currently, the 48 contiguous States are divided into six areas with three members representing each area. This final rule reduces the number of geographic areas from six to three. The number of Board members representing each geographic area changes to six. The total Board membership remains at 18. DATES: Effective November 5, 2020. FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Craig Shackelford, Research and Promotion Division, at (470) 315–4246; fax (202) 720–1125; or by email at Craig.shackelford@usda.gov. SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: SUMMARY: Background The Egg Research and Consumer Information Act of 1974 (Act) authorizes the Secretary to establish an Egg Board composed of egg producers or PO 00000 Frm 00010 Fmt 4700 Sfmt 4700 representatives of egg producers appointed by the Secretary so that the representation of egg producers on the Board reflects, to the extent practicable, the proportion of eggs produced in each geographic area of the United States. 7 U.S.C. 2707(b). The Board administers the Order with oversight by the U.S Department of Agriculture (USDA). The Order outlines the geographic representation of the current 18-member board, composed of members from six distinct geographical areas. To ensure that representation on the Board remains representative of the industry, § 1250.328 of the Order provides for reapportionment of Board membership based on the Board’s periodic review of production by geographic area. This periodic review can occur at any time based on changes in egg production in various geographical areas; however, the Order requires that the area distribution be reviewed at least every five years. Sections 1250.328(d) and (e) of the Order provide that any changes in the delineation of the geographical areas and the area distribution of the Board be determined by the percentage of total U.S. egg production. Reapportionment The Board and the Agricultural Marketing Service (AMS) reviewed production data to determine what, if any, changes were needed in the distribution of Board membership. The Board and AMS verified certain shifts in production trends. Section 8 of the Act (7 U.S.C. 2707) provides for a Board of not more than 20 members. Section 1250.328 of the Order provides for an 18-member Board and contemplates changes to the Board by determining the percentage of United States egg production in each area times 18 (total Board membership) and rounding to the nearest whole number. Using the calculation for the North Atlantic region results in two members while the calculation for the other five regions result in three members each, for a total 17 members, one less than the number stated in the Order. Therefore, regions were changed so that the 18-member Board can be established. Table 1 shows that reducing regions from six to three expands the number of States included in each region and suggests that the grouping of more States into fewer regions improves consistency in the proportion of small versus large farms represented on the Board. E:\FR\FM\06OCR1.SGM 06OCR1 Federal Register / Vol. 85, No. 194 / Tuesday, October 6, 2020 / Rules and Regulations 62943 TABLE 1—REGIONAL POULTRY FARM DISTRIBUTION—CURRENT AND NEW Small Large <$1,000,000 $1,000,000+ Region Total States Current Geographical Area I ................................................................. II ................................................................ III ............................................................... IV .............................................................. V ............................................................... VI .............................................................. 27,243 29,077 27,774 24,652 7,292 32,750 148,788 93% 76% 95% 96% 96% 97% 91% 2,172 9,042 1,575 1,102 312 1,108 15,311 7% 24% 5% 4% 4% 3% 9% 29,415 38,119 29,349 25,754 7,604 33,858 164,099 13 9 5 10 3 10 50 9,891 4,299 1,121 15,311 13% 8% 3% 9% 73,404 52,781 37,914 164,099 21 10 19 50 New Geographical Area I ................................................................. II ................................................................ III ............................................................... 63,513 48,482 36,793 148,788 With the inclusion of more states into fewer regions, the proportion of small versus large farms is less variable. For example, in Regions I and II in the current structure, 93 percent and 76 percent, respectively, of the farms are classified as small. In the new structure the two regions are more or less combined, and the new Region I is composed of 87 percent small firms. The table shows less variation in size between the three new regions than there is in the current structure. Section 1250.326 of the Order establishes a Board, composed of 18 egg producers or representatives of egg producers, and 18 specific alternates, appointed by the Secretary from nominations submitted by eligible organizations, associations, or cooperatives, or by other producers pursuant to § 1250.328. The current 18member Board is composed of three members representing each of the six regions. There were no changes to the total number of members (18 members with 18 alternates). However, regions 87% 92% 97% 91% were reduced to three from six and each region will include more States. Pursuant to the requirements of the Order, the Board began its most recent review of Board member apportionment in 2019. Production data from the 2018 National Agricultural Statistics Service (NASS) report was used to establish the percentage of U.S. egg production in each area. The goal of this reapportionment of Board members is to ensure representation on the Board remains consistent with the Act and Order by recognizing production shifts over time. These changes are effective with the Secretary’s appointments for terms beginning in the year 2021. The Board and AMS recognize that shifts in production have resulted in the Northeast region no longer being proportionately represented on the Board. The Board and AMS also found that industry consolidation has also contributed to a more limited number of egg producing entities in each region. The Board and AMS desire a structure that allows the full representation of all the egg producing entities. The Board and AMS have found that it is increasingly difficult for State nominating organizations to present an appropriate number of candidates each year. By reducing the number of regions and increasing the geographic size of regions, the Board and AMS believe that more egg producing entities may be represented on the Board. This final rule results in the proportionate representation of each geographic area and increases the number of egg-producing entities represented in each geographic area. The Board and AMS have determined that these changes will better represent the distribution of egg production and enable eligible nominating organizations to more easily identify potential nominees. In accordance with § 1250.328(e) of the Order, the Board has recommended changes to the number and composition of geographic regions represented on the Board. The current and new representation are indicated in the following two tables: TABLE 2—CURRENT GEOGRAPHICAL DISTRIBUTION AND NUMBER OF MEMBERS ON THE BOARD khammond on DSKJM1Z7X2PROD with RULES Geographic area Current number of members Represented states I-North Atlantic .......................... 3 II-South Atlantic ........................ 3 III-East North Central ................ IV-West North Central .............. 3 3 V-South Central ........................ VI-Western ................................ 3 3 VerDate Sep<11>2014 20:20 Oct 05, 2020 Jkt 253001 Connecticut, Delaware, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New York, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, Vermont, Virginia, West Virginia, and District of Columbia. Alabama, Arkansas, Florida, Georgia, Louisiana, Mississippi, North Carolina, Oklahoma, and South Carolina. Kentucky, Michigan, Missouri, Ohio, and Tennessee. Colorado, Idaho, Illinois, Indiana, Minnesota, Montana, North Dakota, South Dakota, Wisconsin, and Wyoming. Iowa, Kansas, and Nebraska. Arizona, California, Nevada, New Mexico, Oregon, Texas, Utah, and Washington. PO 00000 Frm 00011 Fmt 4700 Sfmt 4700 E:\FR\FM\06OCR1.SGM 06OCR1 62944 Federal Register / Vol. 85, No. 194 / Tuesday, October 6, 2020 / Rules and Regulations TABLE 3—NEW GEOGRAPHICAL DISTRIBUTION AND NUMBER OF MEMBERS ON THE BOARD Geographic area Number of members States represented I-East ........................................ 6 II-Central ................................... 6 III-West ..................................... 6 Membership changes are based on production in the new geographic areas, noting that changes to Board Connecticut, Delaware, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New York, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, Vermont, Virginia, West Virginia, the District of Columbia, Alabama, Georgia, Florida, Louisiana, Mississippi, North Carolina, South Carolina, and Texas. Arkansas, Oklahoma, Illinois, Indiana, Kentucky, Michigan, Missouri, Ohio, Tennessee, and Wisconsin. Arizona, California, Colorado, Idaho, Iowa, Kansas, Minnesota, Montana, Nebraska, Nevada, New Mexico, North Dakota, Oregon, South Dakota, Utah, Washington, and Wyoming. distribution will be accomplished by determining the percentage of reported cases of eggs produced in each of the three new areas times 18 (total Board membership) and rounding to the nearest whole number, as follows: TABLE 4—PROJECTED BOARD MEMBERSHIP USDA reported cases of eggs produced Geographical areas Projected board membership I-East ........................................................................................ II-Central .................................................................................. III-West ..................................................................................... 35,724,500,000 36,942,400,000 36,525,200,000 32.72 33.83 33.45 5.89 6.09 6.02 6 6 6 Total U.S. Production ....................................................... 109,192,100,000 100 100 18 This final rule applies to the nomination process in 2020 and affects the board members appointed by the Secretary to serve on the Board beginning in 2021. A 30-day comment period was provided to allow interested persons to respond to the proposal. All written comments received in response to this rule by the date specified were considered prior to finalizing this action. khammond on DSKJM1Z7X2PROD with RULES % of total production multiplied by 18 board members % of total production Summary of Comments USDA received five timely comments from individuals and industry organizations. Of those comments, two were in favor of the rule, and three did not state a position. Two of the comments were submitted by industry organizations in support of the changes. One comment expressed concerns that the larger regions reduce the representation of smaller-production areas. AMS addressed this concern in the proposed rule. Table 1 indicates the distribution of farms represented by size, and the proportion of farms that are small versus large. With the inclusion of more states into fewer regions, the proportion of small versus large farms becomes less variable. For example, in Regions I and II in the current structure, 93 percent and 76 percent, respectively, of the farms in these regions are classified as small. In the new structure the two regions are VerDate Sep<11>2014 16:34 Oct 05, 2020 Jkt 253001 more or less combined, and the new Region I is composed of 87 percent small farms. The table shows less variation in size between the three new regions than there is in the current structure. One comment observed that Oregon was missing in Table 3. AMS recognizes this error and has corrected it by placing Oregon in the West Region III. One comment did not address the proposal but did offer one idea related to Board membership. The required composition of the Board is set forth in the Act and Order. No changes were made in the final rule based on the comments received. Executive Orders 12866, 13563, and 13771 Executive Orders 12866 and 13563 direct agencies to assess all costs and benefits of available regulatory alternatives and, if regulation is necessary, to select regulatory approaches that maximize net benefits (including potential economic, environmental, public health, and safety effects; distributive impacts; and equity). Executive Order 13563 emphasizes the importance of quantifying both costs and benefits, reducing costs, harmonizing rules, and promoting flexibility. This rule does not meet the definition of a significant regulatory action contained in section 3(f) of Executive Order 12866 and therefore, the Office of Management and PO 00000 Frm 00012 Fmt 4700 Sfmt 4700 Budget (OMB) has waived review of this action. Additionally, because this rule does not meet the definition of a significant regulatory action, it does not trigger the requirements contained in Executive Order 13771. See OMB’s Memorandum titled ‘‘Interim Guidance Implementing Section 2 of the Executive Order of January 30, 2017, titled ‘Reducing Regulation and Controlling Regulatory Costs’ ’’ (February 2, 2017). Executive Order 12988 This final rule has been reviewed under Executive Order 12988, Civil Justice Reform. This rule is not intended to have retroactive effect. There are no administrative proceedings that must be exhausted prior to any judicial challenge to the provisions of this rule. Executive Order 13175 This action has been reviewed in accordance with the requirements of Executive Order 13175, Consultation and Coordination with Indian Tribal Governments. The review reveals that this regulation would not have substantial and direct effects on Tribal governments or significant Tribal implications. Paperwork Reduction Act In accordance with OMB regulations (5 CFR part 1320) that implement the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995 (44 E:\FR\FM\06OCR1.SGM 06OCR1 Federal Register / Vol. 85, No. 194 / Tuesday, October 6, 2020 / Rules and Regulations khammond on DSKJM1Z7X2PROD with RULES U.S.C. part 35), the information collection and recordkeeping requirements contained in the Order and accompanying Rules and Regulations have previously been approved by OMB and were assigned OMB control number 0581–0093. This final rule does not increase or impose any new information collection or recordkeeping requirements. Regulatory Flexibility Act Pursuant to the requirements set forth in the Regulatory Flexibility Act (RFA) (5 U.S.C. 601–622), AMS considered the economic effect of this action on small entities and determined that this final rule does not have a significant economic impact on a substantial number of small entities. The purpose of RFA is to fit regulatory actions to the scale of businesses subject to such actions in order that small businesses will not be unduly burdened. The Small Business Administration (SBA) published an interim final rule that became effective on August 19, 2019, (84 FR 34261) that adjusts the monetarybased size standards for inflation. As a result of this rule, the size classification for small egg-producing firms changed from sales of $750,000 or less to sales of $1,000,000 or less. According to USDA’s NASS, USDA collects data for the Agriculture Census (Ag Census) using the North American Industry Classification System (NAICS). The NAICS classifies economic activities and was developed to provide a consistent framework for the collection, analysis, and dissemination of industrial statistics used by government policy analysts, academia and the business community. It is the first industry classification system developed in accordance with a single principle of aggregation that production units using similar production processes should be grouped together. In the 2017 Ag Census, the poultry and egg production classification (classification category 1123) was comprised of establishments primarily engaged in breeding, hatching, and raising poultry for meat or egg production. The 2017 Ag Census also shows there were 164,099 reported poultry farms in the United States and 36,012 egg producers. Ag Census data includes sales category ranges for the poultry sector but does not include separate sales categories for egg producers. Instead, NASS provides data for the broader category of ‘‘Poultry and Eggs.’’ Therefore, AMS is not able to obtain stand-alone sales data for eggproducing farms. As a result, for this RFA, AMS used the broader category of poultry producers as the closest possible VerDate Sep<11>2014 16:34 Oct 05, 2020 Jkt 253001 substitute as the basis for determining the size of egg producers. Of the 164,099 poultry producers identified in the 2017 Census of Agriculture, 148,788 (91 percent) reported sales of less than $1,000,000 and thus fall under the SBA definition of small business. Therefore, the remaining 15,311 (9 percent) producers are considered large. If the egg producer segment has the same proportional distribution across firm sizes, 91 percent, or 32,771 egg producers are classified as small businesses, and 9 percent, or 3,241 egg producers are considered large. Sales data are also available at the state level for the overall poultry sector. Using this data, and the assumption that the proportion of large and small poultry farms similarly applies to egg producers, Table 1 shows how the changes in geographical areas shift producer representation on the Board. The final rule imposes no new burden on the industry, as it only adjusts representation on the Board to reflect changes in egg production. The adjustments are required by the Order and do not result in a change in the overall number of Board members. Even if most egg producers are small entities, this action does not change their ability to qualify for representation on the Board or add any new burden. In conclusion, AMS believes that reducing the regions from six to three and increasing the number of States within each region will contribute to greater representation of egg producing firms on the Board. AMS is committed to complying with the E-Government Act of 2002 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. AMS has not identified any relevant Federal rules that duplicate, overlap, or conflict with this rule. List of Subjects in 7 CFR part 1250 Administrative practice and procedure, Advertising, Agricultural research, Eggs and Egg products, Reporting and recordkeeping requirements. For the reasons set forth in the preamble, AMS amends 7 CFR part 1250 as follows: PART 1250—EGG PROMOTION AND RESEARCH 1. The authority citation for 7 CFR part 1250 continues to read as follows: ■ PO 00000 Frm 00013 Fmt 4700 Sfmt 4700 62945 Authority: 7 U.S.C. 2701–2718 and 7 U.S.C 7401. 2. Revise § 1250.510 to read as follows: ■ § 1250.510 Determination of Board Membership. (a) Pursuant to § 1250.328 (d) and (e), the 48 contiguous States of the United States shall be grouped into three geographic areas, as follows: Area 1 (East)—Connecticut, Delaware, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New York, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, Vermont, Virginia, West Virginia, the District of Columbia, Alabama, Georgia, Florida, Louisiana, Mississippi, North Carolina, South Carolina, and Texas; Area 2 (Central)—Arkansas, Oklahoma, Illinois, Indiana, Kentucky, Michigan, Missouri, Ohio, Tennessee, and Wisconsin; Area 3 (West)—Arizona, California, Colorado, Idaho, Iowa, Kansas, Minnesota, Montana, Nebraska, Nevada, New Mexico, North Dakota, Oregon, South Dakota, Utah, Washington, and Wyoming. (b) Board representation among the three geographic areas is apportioned to reflect the percentages of United States egg production in each area times 18 (total Board membership). The distribution of members of the Board is: Area 1–6, Area 2–6, and Area 3–6. Each member will have an alternate appointed from the same area. Bruce Summers, Administrator, Agricultural Marketing Service. [FR Doc. 2020–19431 Filed 10–5–20; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 3410–02–P FARM CREDIT ADMINISTRATION 12 CFR Part 615 RIN 3052–AD35 Organization; Funding and Fiscal Affairs, Loan Policies and Operations, and Funding Operations; Investment Eligibility Farm Credit Administration. Final rule. AGENCY: ACTION: The Farm Credit Administration (FCA, we, or our) adopts a final rule that amends its investment regulations to allow Farm Credit System (FCS or System) associations to purchase and hold the portion of certain loans that non-FCS lenders originate and sell in the secondary market, and that the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) unconditionally guarantees or insures as to the timely payment of principal and interest. SUMMARY: E:\FR\FM\06OCR1.SGM 06OCR1

Agencies

[Federal Register Volume 85, Number 194 (Tuesday, October 6, 2020)]
[Rules and Regulations]
[Pages 62942-62945]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Publishing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 2020-19431]


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DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE

Agricultural Marketing Service

7 CFR Part 1250

[Document No. AMS-LP-19-0113]


Egg Research and Promotion; Reapportionment

AGENCY: Agricultural Marketing Service, USDA.

ACTION: Final rule.

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

SUMMARY: This final rule adjusts representation on the American Egg 
Board (Board), and outlines changes to geographic areas based on 
sustained changes in egg production in several States. The Egg Research 
and Promotion Order (Order) establishes a Board composed of 18 members. 
Currently, the 48 contiguous States are divided into six areas with 
three members representing each area. This final rule reduces the 
number of geographic areas from six to three. The number of Board 
members representing each geographic area changes to six. The total 
Board membership remains at 18.

DATES: Effective November 5, 2020.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Craig Shackelford, Research and 
Promotion Division, at (470) 315-4246; fax (202) 720-1125; or by email 
at [email protected].

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: 

Background

    The Egg Research and Consumer Information Act of 1974 (Act) 
authorizes the Secretary to establish an Egg Board composed of egg 
producers or representatives of egg producers appointed by the 
Secretary so that the representation of egg producers on the Board 
reflects, to the extent practicable, the proportion of eggs produced in 
each geographic area of the United States. 7 U.S.C. 2707(b). The Board 
administers the Order with oversight by the U.S Department of 
Agriculture (USDA).
    The Order outlines the geographic representation of the current 18-
member board, composed of members from six distinct geographical areas. 
To ensure that representation on the Board remains representative of 
the industry, Sec.  1250.328 of the Order provides for reapportionment 
of Board membership based on the Board's periodic review of production 
by geographic area. This periodic review can occur at any time based on 
changes in egg production in various geographical areas; however, the 
Order requires that the area distribution be reviewed at least every 
five years. Sections 1250.328(d) and (e) of the Order provide that any 
changes in the delineation of the geographical areas and the area 
distribution of the Board be determined by the percentage of total U.S. 
egg production.

Reapportionment

    The Board and the Agricultural Marketing Service (AMS) reviewed 
production data to determine what, if any, changes were needed in the 
distribution of Board membership. The Board and AMS verified certain 
shifts in production trends. Section 8 of the Act (7 U.S.C. 2707) 
provides for a Board of not more than 20 members. Section 1250.328 of 
the Order provides for an 18-member Board and contemplates changes to 
the Board by determining the percentage of United States egg production 
in each area times 18 (total Board membership) and rounding to the 
nearest whole number. Using the calculation for the North Atlantic 
region results in two members while the calculation for the other five 
regions result in three members each, for a total 17 members, one less 
than the number stated in the Order. Therefore, regions were changed so 
that the 18-member Board can be established. Table 1 shows that 
reducing regions from six to three expands the number of States 
included in each region and suggests that the grouping of more States 
into fewer regions improves consistency in the proportion of small 
versus large farms represented on the Board.

[[Page 62943]]



                                              Table 1--Regional Poultry Farm Distribution--Current and New
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                                               Small           Large
                         Region                          --------------------------------      Total          States
                                                            <$1,000,000     $1,000,000+
-------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                                                Current Geographical Area
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
I.......................................................          27,243             93%           2,172              7%          29,415              13
II......................................................          29,077             76%           9,042             24%          38,119               9
III.....................................................          27,774             95%           1,575              5%          29,349               5
IV......................................................          24,652             96%           1,102              4%          25,754              10
V.......................................................           7,292             96%             312              4%           7,604               3
VI......................................................          32,750             97%           1,108              3%          33,858              10
                                                                 148,788             91%          15,311              9%         164,099              50
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                                                  New Geographical Area
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
I.......................................................          63,513             87%           9,891             13%          73,404              21
II......................................................          48,482             92%           4,299              8%          52,781              10
III.....................................................          36,793             97%           1,121              3%          37,914              19
                                                                 148,788             91%          15,311              9%         164,099              50
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

    With the inclusion of more states into fewer regions, the 
proportion of small versus large farms is less variable. For example, 
in Regions I and II in the current structure, 93 percent and 76 
percent, respectively, of the farms are classified as small. In the new 
structure the two regions are more or less combined, and the new Region 
I is composed of 87 percent small firms. The table shows less variation 
in size between the three new regions than there is in the current 
structure.
    Section 1250.326 of the Order establishes a Board, composed of 18 
egg producers or representatives of egg producers, and 18 specific 
alternates, appointed by the Secretary from nominations submitted by 
eligible organizations, associations, or cooperatives, or by other 
producers pursuant to Sec.  1250.328. The current 18-member Board is 
composed of three members representing each of the six regions. There 
were no changes to the total number of members (18 members with 18 
alternates). However, regions were reduced to three from six and each 
region will include more States.
    Pursuant to the requirements of the Order, the Board began its most 
recent review of Board member apportionment in 2019. Production data 
from the 2018 National Agricultural Statistics Service (NASS) report 
was used to establish the percentage of U.S. egg production in each 
area. The goal of this reapportionment of Board members is to ensure 
representation on the Board remains consistent with the Act and Order 
by recognizing production shifts over time. These changes are effective 
with the Secretary's appointments for terms beginning in the year 2021.
    The Board and AMS recognize that shifts in production have resulted 
in the Northeast region no longer being proportionately represented on 
the Board. The Board and AMS also found that industry consolidation has 
also contributed to a more limited number of egg producing entities in 
each region. The Board and AMS desire a structure that allows the full 
representation of all the egg producing entities. The Board and AMS 
have found that it is increasingly difficult for State nominating 
organizations to present an appropriate number of candidates each year. 
By reducing the number of regions and increasing the geographic size of 
regions, the Board and AMS believe that more egg producing entities may 
be represented on the Board.
    This final rule results in the proportionate representation of each 
geographic area and increases the number of egg-producing entities 
represented in each geographic area. The Board and AMS have determined 
that these changes will better represent the distribution of egg 
production and enable eligible nominating organizations to more easily 
identify potential nominees.
    In accordance with Sec.  1250.328(e) of the Order, the Board has 
recommended changes to the number and composition of geographic regions 
represented on the Board.
    The current and new representation are indicated in the following 
two tables:

                  Table 2--Current Geographical Distribution and Number of Members on the Board
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                                Current number
                Geographic area                   of members                   Represented states
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
I-North Atlantic..............................               3  Connecticut, Delaware, Maine, Maryland,
                                                                 Massachusetts, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New
                                                                 York, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, Vermont,
                                                                 Virginia, West Virginia, and District of
                                                                 Columbia.
II-South Atlantic.............................               3  Alabama, Arkansas, Florida, Georgia, Louisiana,
                                                                 Mississippi, North Carolina, Oklahoma, and
                                                                 South Carolina.
III-East North Central........................               3  Kentucky, Michigan, Missouri, Ohio, and
                                                                 Tennessee.
IV-West North Central.........................               3  Colorado, Idaho, Illinois, Indiana, Minnesota,
                                                                 Montana, North Dakota, South Dakota, Wisconsin,
                                                                 and Wyoming.
V-South Central...............................               3  Iowa, Kansas, and Nebraska.
VI-Western....................................               3  Arizona, California, Nevada, New Mexico, Oregon,
                                                                 Texas, Utah, and Washington.
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[[Page 62944]]


                    Table 3--New Geographical Distribution and Number of Members on the Board
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                                   Number of
                Geographic area                     members                    States represented
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
I-East........................................               6  Connecticut, Delaware, Maine, Maryland,
                                                                 Massachusetts, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New
                                                                 York, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, Vermont,
                                                                 Virginia, West Virginia, the District of
                                                                 Columbia, Alabama, Georgia, Florida, Louisiana,
                                                                 Mississippi, North Carolina, South Carolina,
                                                                 and Texas.
II-Central....................................               6  Arkansas, Oklahoma, Illinois, Indiana, Kentucky,
                                                                 Michigan, Missouri, Ohio, Tennessee, and
                                                                 Wisconsin.
III-West......................................               6  Arizona, California, Colorado, Idaho, Iowa,
                                                                 Kansas, Minnesota, Montana, Nebraska, Nevada,
                                                                 New Mexico, North Dakota, Oregon, South Dakota,
                                                                 Utah, Washington, and Wyoming.
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

    Membership changes are based on production in the new geographic 
areas, noting that changes to Board distribution will be accomplished 
by determining the percentage of reported cases of eggs produced in 
each of the three new areas times 18 (total Board membership) and 
rounding to the nearest whole number, as follows:

                                       Table 4--Projected Board Membership
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                                                                % of total
                                        USDA reported        % of total         production      Projected board
         Geographical areas             cases of eggs        production      multiplied by 18      membership
                                           produced                           board members
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
I-East..............................     35,724,500,000              32.72               5.89                  6
II-Central..........................     36,942,400,000              33.83               6.09                  6
III-West............................     36,525,200,000              33.45               6.02                  6
                                     ---------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Total U.S. Production...........    109,192,100,000                100                100                 18
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

    This final rule applies to the nomination process in 2020 and 
affects the board members appointed by the Secretary to serve on the 
Board beginning in 2021.
    A 30-day comment period was provided to allow interested persons to 
respond to the proposal. All written comments received in response to 
this rule by the date specified were considered prior to finalizing 
this action.

Summary of Comments

    USDA received five timely comments from individuals and industry 
organizations. Of those comments, two were in favor of the rule, and 
three did not state a position. Two of the comments were submitted by 
industry organizations in support of the changes. One comment expressed 
concerns that the larger regions reduce the representation of smaller-
production areas. AMS addressed this concern in the proposed rule. 
Table 1 indicates the distribution of farms represented by size, and 
the proportion of farms that are small versus large. With the inclusion 
of more states into fewer regions, the proportion of small versus large 
farms becomes less variable. For example, in Regions I and II in the 
current structure, 93 percent and 76 percent, respectively, of the 
farms in these regions are classified as small. In the new structure 
the two regions are more or less combined, and the new Region I is 
composed of 87 percent small farms. The table shows less variation in 
size between the three new regions than there is in the current 
structure. One comment observed that Oregon was missing in Table 3. AMS 
recognizes this error and has corrected it by placing Oregon in the 
West Region III. One comment did not address the proposal but did offer 
one idea related to Board membership. The required composition of the 
Board is set forth in the Act and Order. No changes were made in the 
final rule based on the comments received.

Executive Orders 12866, 13563, and 13771

    Executive Orders 12866 and 13563 direct agencies to assess all 
costs and benefits of available regulatory alternatives and, if 
regulation is necessary, to select regulatory approaches that maximize 
net benefits (including potential economic, environmental, public 
health, and safety effects; distributive impacts; and equity). 
Executive Order 13563 emphasizes the importance of quantifying both 
costs and benefits, reducing costs, harmonizing rules, and promoting 
flexibility. This rule does not meet the definition of a significant 
regulatory action contained in section 3(f) of Executive Order 12866 
and therefore, the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) has waived 
review of this action. Additionally, because this rule does not meet 
the definition of a significant regulatory action, it does not trigger 
the requirements contained in Executive Order 13771. See OMB's 
Memorandum titled ``Interim Guidance Implementing Section 2 of the 
Executive Order of January 30, 2017, titled `Reducing Regulation and 
Controlling Regulatory Costs' '' (February 2, 2017).

Executive Order 12988

    This final rule has been reviewed under Executive Order 12988, 
Civil Justice Reform. This rule is not intended to have retroactive 
effect.
    There are no administrative proceedings that must be exhausted 
prior to any judicial challenge to the provisions of this rule.

Executive Order 13175

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

Paperwork Reduction Act

    In accordance with OMB regulations (5 CFR part 1320) that implement 
the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995 (44

[[Page 62945]]

U.S.C. part 35), the information collection and recordkeeping 
requirements contained in the Order and accompanying Rules and 
Regulations have previously been approved by OMB and were assigned OMB 
control number 0581-0093. This final rule does not increase or impose 
any new information collection or recordkeeping requirements.

Regulatory Flexibility Act

    Pursuant to the requirements set forth in the Regulatory 
Flexibility Act (RFA) (5 U.S.C. 601-622), AMS considered the economic 
effect of this action on small entities and determined that this final 
rule does not have a significant economic impact on a substantial 
number of small entities. The purpose of RFA is to fit regulatory 
actions to the scale of businesses subject to such actions in order 
that small businesses will not be unduly burdened. The Small Business 
Administration (SBA) published an interim final rule that became 
effective on August 19, 2019, (84 FR 34261) that adjusts the monetary-
based size standards for inflation. As a result of this rule, the size 
classification for small egg-producing firms changed from sales of 
$750,000 or less to sales of $1,000,000 or less.
    According to USDA's NASS, USDA collects data for the Agriculture 
Census (Ag Census) using the North American Industry Classification 
System (NAICS). The NAICS classifies economic activities and was 
developed to provide a consistent framework for the collection, 
analysis, and dissemination of industrial statistics used by government 
policy analysts, academia and the business community. It is the first 
industry classification system developed in accordance with a single 
principle of aggregation that production units using similar production 
processes should be grouped together.
    In the 2017 Ag Census, the poultry and egg production 
classification (classification category 1123) was comprised of 
establishments primarily engaged in breeding, hatching, and raising 
poultry for meat or egg production. The 2017 Ag Census also shows there 
were 164,099 reported poultry farms in the United States and 36,012 egg 
producers. Ag Census data includes sales category ranges for the 
poultry sector but does not include separate sales categories for egg 
producers. Instead, NASS provides data for the broader category of 
``Poultry and Eggs.'' Therefore, AMS is not able to obtain stand-alone 
sales data for egg-producing farms. As a result, for this RFA, AMS used 
the broader category of poultry producers as the closest possible 
substitute as the basis for determining the size of egg producers.
    Of the 164,099 poultry producers identified in the 2017 Census of 
Agriculture, 148,788 (91 percent) reported sales of less than 
$1,000,000 and thus fall under the SBA definition of small business. 
Therefore, the remaining 15,311 (9 percent) producers are considered 
large. If the egg producer segment has the same proportional 
distribution across firm sizes, 91 percent, or 32,771 egg producers are 
classified as small businesses, and 9 percent, or 3,241 egg producers 
are considered large.
    Sales data are also available at the state level for the overall 
poultry sector. Using this data, and the assumption that the proportion 
of large and small poultry farms similarly applies to egg producers, 
Table 1 shows how the changes in geographical areas shift producer 
representation on the Board.
    The final rule imposes no new burden on the industry, as it only 
adjusts representation on the Board to reflect changes in egg 
production. The adjustments are required by the Order and do not result 
in a change in the overall number of Board members. Even if most egg 
producers are small entities, this action does not change their ability 
to qualify for representation on the Board or add any new burden. In 
conclusion, AMS believes that reducing the regions from six to three 
and increasing the number of States within each region will contribute 
to greater representation of egg producing firms on the Board.
    AMS is committed to complying with the E-Government Act of 2002 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.
    AMS has not identified any relevant Federal rules that duplicate, 
overlap, or conflict with this rule.

List of Subjects in 7 CFR part 1250

    Administrative practice and procedure, Advertising, Agricultural 
research, Eggs and Egg products, Reporting and recordkeeping 
requirements.

    For the reasons set forth in the preamble, AMS amends 7 CFR part 
1250 as follows:

PART 1250--EGG PROMOTION AND RESEARCH

0
1. The authority citation for 7 CFR part 1250 continues to read as 
follows:

    Authority:  7 U.S.C. 2701-2718 and 7 U.S.C 7401.


0
2. Revise Sec.  1250.510 to read as follows:


Sec.  1250.510  Determination of Board Membership.

    (a) Pursuant to Sec.  1250.328 (d) and (e), the 48 contiguous 
States of the United States shall be grouped into three geographic 
areas, as follows: Area 1 (East)--Connecticut, Delaware, Maine, 
Maryland, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New York, 
Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, Vermont, Virginia, West Virginia, the 
District of Columbia, Alabama, Georgia, Florida, Louisiana, 
Mississippi, North Carolina, South Carolina, and Texas; Area 2 
(Central)--Arkansas, Oklahoma, Illinois, Indiana, Kentucky, Michigan, 
Missouri, Ohio, Tennessee, and Wisconsin; Area 3 (West)--Arizona, 
California, Colorado, Idaho, Iowa, Kansas, Minnesota, Montana, 
Nebraska, Nevada, New Mexico, North Dakota, Oregon, South Dakota, Utah, 
Washington, and Wyoming.
    (b) Board representation among the three geographic areas is 
apportioned to reflect the percentages of United States egg production 
in each area times 18 (total Board membership). The distribution of 
members of the Board is: Area 1-6, Area 2-6, and Area 3-6. Each member 
will have an alternate appointed from the same area.

Bruce Summers,
Administrator, Agricultural Marketing Service.
[FR Doc. 2020-19431 Filed 10-5-20; 8:45 am]
BILLING CODE 3410-02-P