7 U.S. Code § 6804 - Required terms in orders
(b) PromoFlor Council
(1) Establishment and membership
The order shall provide for the establishment of a Fresh Cut Flowers and Fresh Cut Greens Promotion Council, consisting of 25 members, to administer the order.
(i) Appointment The order shall provide that members of the PromoFlor Council shall be appointed by the Secretary from nominations submitted as provided in paragraphs (2) and (3).
(ii) Composition The PromoFlor Council shall consist of—
(I) participating qualified handlers representing qualified wholesale handlers and producers and importers that are qualified handlers;
(2) Distribution of appointments
(A) In general
The order shall provide that the membership of the PromoFlor Council shall consist of—
(i) 14 members representing qualified wholesale handlers of domestic or imported cut flowers and cut greens;
(v) 2 members representing persons who produce fresh cut flowers and fresh cut greens, of whom—
(I) 1 member shall represent persons who produce the flowers or greens in locations that are east of the Mississippi River; and
As used in this subsection:
(i) Importer that is a qualified handler The term “importer that is a qualified handler” means an entity—
(I) whose principal activity is the importation of cut flowers or cut greens into the United States (either directly or as an agent, broker, or consignee of any person or nation that produces or handles cut flowers or cut greens outside the United States for sale in the United States); and
(ii) Producer that is a qualified handler The term “producer that is a qualified handler” means an entity that—
(I) is engaged—
(aa) in the domestic production, for sale in commerce, of cut flowers or cut greens and that owns or shares in the ownership and risk of loss of the cut flowers or cut greens; or
(iii) Qualified wholesale handler
(I) In general The term “qualified wholesale handler” means a person in business as a floral wholesale jobber or floral supplier that is subject to assessments as a qualified handler under the order.
(II) Definitions As used in this clause:
(aa) Floral supplier The term “floral supplier” means a person engaged in acquiring cut flowers or cut greens to be manufactured into floral articles or otherwise processed for resale.
(3) Nomination process
The order shall provide that—
(B) nominations for each appointment of a qualified wholesale handler, producer that is a qualified handler, or importer that is a qualified handler to the PromoFlor Council shall be made by qualified wholesale handlers, producers that are qualified handlers, or importers that are qualified handlers, respectively, through an election process, in accordance with regulations issued by the Secretary;
(C) nominations for—
(i) 1 of the retailer appointments shall be made by the American Floral Marketing Council or a successor entity; and
(D) nominations for each appointment of a representative of persons who produce fresh cut flowers and fresh cut greens shall be made by the persons through an election process, in accordance with regulations issued by the Secretary; and
(E) in any case in which qualified wholesale handlers, producers that are qualified handlers, importers that are qualified handlers, persons who produce fresh cut flowers and fresh cut greens, or retailers fail to nominate individuals for an appointment to the PromoFlor Council, the Secretary may appoint an individual to fill the vacancy on a basis provided in the order or other regulations of the Secretary.
The order shall provide for the selection of alternate members of the PromoFlor Council by the Secretary in accordance with procedures specified in the order.
(5) Terms; compensation
The order shall provide that—
(A) each term of appointment to the PromoFlor Council shall be for 3 years, except that, of the initial appointments, 9 of the appointments shall be for 2-year terms, 8 of the appointments shall be for 3-year terms, and 8 of the appointments shall be for 4-year terms;
(B) no member of the PromoFlor Council may serve more than 2 consecutive terms of 3 years, except that any member serving an initial term of 4 years may serve an additional term of 3 years; and
(6) Executive committee
(i) In general The order shall authorize the PromoFlor Council to appoint, from among the members of the Council, an executive committee of not more than 9 members.
(ii) Initial membership The membership of the executive committee initially shall be composed of—
(iii) Subsequent membership After the initial appointments, each appointment to the executive committee shall be made so as to ensure that the committee reflects, to the maximum extent practicable, the membership composition of the PromoFlor Council as a whole.
(c) General responsibilities of PromoFlor Council
The order shall define the general responsibilities of the PromoFlor Council, which shall include the responsibility to—
(4) employ such persons as the PromoFlor Council determines are necessary, and set the compensation and define the duties of the persons;
(A) develop budgets for the implementation of the order and submit the budgets to the Secretary for approval under subsection (d) of this section; and
(A) implement plans and projects for cut flowers or cut greens promotion, consumer information, or related research, as provided in subsection (d) of this section; or
(7) evaluate on-going and completed plans and projects for cut flowers or cut greens promotion, consumer information, or related research;
(10) invest, pending disbursement under a plan or project, funds collected through assessments authorized under this chapter only in—
(C) any interest-bearing account or certificate of deposit of a bank that is a member of the Federal Reserve System; or
except that income from any such invested funds may be used only for a purpose for which the invested funds may be used; and
(d) Budgets; plans and projects
(1) Submission of budgets
The order shall require the PromoFlor Council to submit to the Secretary for approval budgets, on a fiscal year basis, of the anticipated expenses and disbursements of the Council in the implementation of the order, including the projected costs of cut flowers and cut greens promotion, consumer information, and related research plans and projects.
(2) Plans and projects
(A) Promotion and consumer information
The order shall provide—
(i) for the establishment, implementation, administration, and evaluation of appropriate plans and projects for advertising, sales promotion, other promotion, and consumer information with respect to cut flowers and cut greens, and for the disbursement of necessary funds for the purposes described in this clause;
(ii) that any plan or project referred to in clause (i) shall be directed toward increasing the general demand for cut flowers or cut greens and may not make reference to a private brand or trade name, point of origin, or source of supply, except that this clause shall not preclude the PromoFlor Council from offering the plans and projects of the Council for use by commercial parties, under terms and conditions prescribed by the PromoFlor Council and approved by the Secretary; and
The order shall provide for—
(i) the establishment, implementation, administration, and evaluation of plans and projects for—
(II) research with respect to the sale, distribution, marketing, or use of cut flowers or cut greens; and
(e) Contracts and agreements
(1) Promotion, consumer information, and related research plans and projects
(A) In general
To ensure efficient use of funds, the order shall provide that the PromoFlor Council, with the approval of the Secretary, may enter into a contract or an agreement for the implementation of a plan or project for promotion, consumer information, or related research with respect to cut flowers or cut greens, and for the payment of the cost of the contract or agreement with funds received by the PromoFlor Council under the order.
The order shall provide that any contract or agreement entered into under this paragraph shall provide that—
(i) the contracting or agreeing party shall develop and submit to the PromoFlor Council a plan or project, together with a budget that includes the estimated costs to be incurred for the plan or project;
(iii) the contracting or agreeing party shall—
(f) Books and records of PromoFlor Council
(1) In general
The order shall require the PromoFlor Council to—
(A) maintain such books and records (which shall be available to the Secretary for inspection and audit) as the Secretary may require;
(B) prepare and submit to the Secretary, from time to time, such reports as the Secretary may require; and
(g) Control of administrative costs
The order shall provide that the PromoFlor Council shall, as soon as practicable after the order becomes effective and after consultation with the Secretary and other appropriate persons, implement a system of cost controls based on normally accepted business practices that will ensure that the annual budgets of the PromoFlor Council include only amounts for administrative expenses that cover the minimum administrative activities and personnel needed to properly administer and enforce the order, and conduct, supervise, and evaluate plans and projects under the order.
(A) In general
The order shall provide that each qualified handler shall pay to the PromoFlor Council, in the manner provided in the order, an assessment on each sale of cut flowers or cut greens to a retailer or an exempt handler (including each transaction described in subparagraph (C)(ii)), except to the extent that the sale is excluded from assessments under section 6805 (a) of this title.
(B) Published lists
To facilitate the payment of assessments under this paragraph, the PromoFlor Council shall publish lists of qualified handlers required to pay assessments under the order and exempt handlers.
(C) Making determinations
(i) Qualified handler status The order shall contain provisions regarding the determination of the status of a person as a qualified handler or exempt handler that include the rules and requirements specified in sections 6802 (4) and 6805 (b) of this title.
(ii) Certain covered transactions
(I) In general The order shall provide that each non-sale transfer of cut flowers or cut greens to a retailer from a qualified handler that is a distribution center (as described in section 6802 (4)(A)(ii)(II) of this title), and each direct sale of cut flowers or cut greens to a consumer by a qualified handler that is an importer or a producer (as described in section 6802 (4)(A)(iii) of this title), shall be treated as a sale of cut flowers or cut greens to a retailer subject to assessments under this subsection.
(II) Amount of sale in the case of non-sale transfers and direct sales by importers Subject to subclause (IV), in the case of a non-sale transfer of cut flowers or cut greens from a distribution center, or a direct sale to a consumer by an importer, the amount of the sale shall be equal to the sum of—
(aa) the price paid by the distribution center or importer, respectively, to acquire the cut flowers or cut greens; and
(III) Direct sales by producers Subject to subclause (IV), in the case of a direct sale to a consumer by a producer, the amount of the sale shall be equal to an amount determined by multiplying the price paid by the consumer by a uniform percentage established by the order to represent the cost of producing the article and the mark-up of a wholesale handler on a sale to a retailer.
(IV) Changes in uniform percentages Any change in a uniform percentage referred to in subclause (II) or (III) may become effective after—
(2) Assessment rates
With respect to assessment rates, the order shall contain the following terms:
(A) Initial rate
During the first 3 years the order is in effect, the rate of assessment on each sale or transfer of cut flowers or cut greens shall be 1/2 of 1 percent of—
(B) Changes in the rate
(i) In general After the first 3 years the order is in effect, the uniform assessment rate may be increased or decreased annually by not more than .25 percent of—
(II) in the case of transactions described in paragraph (1)(C)(ii), the amount of each transaction calculated as provided in paragraph (1)(C)(ii),except that the assessment rate may in no case exceed 1 percent of the gross sales price or 1 percent of the transaction amount.
(ii) Requirements Any change in the rate of assessment under this subparagraph—
(I) may be made only if adopted by the PromoFlor Council by at least a 2/3 majority vote and approved by the Secretary as necessary to achieve the objectives of this chapter (after public notice and opportunity for comment in accordance with section 553 of title 5 and without regard to sections 556 and 557 of such title);
(II) shall be announced by the PromoFlor Council not less than 30 days prior to going into effect; and
(III) shall not be subject to a vote in a referendum conducted under section 6806 of this title.
(3) Timing of submitting assessments
The order shall provide that each person required to pay assessments under this subsection shall remit, to the PromoFlor Council, the assessment due from each sale by the person of cut flowers or cut greens that is subject to an assessment within such time period after the sale (not to exceed 60 days after the end of the month in which the sale took place) as is specified in the order.
(4) Refunds from escrow account
(A) Establishment of escrow account
The order shall provide that the PromoFlor Council shall—
(ii) place into the account an amount equal to 10 percent of the total amount of assessments collected during the period beginning on the date the order becomes effective, as provided in section 6803 (b)(3)(B) of this title, and ending on the date the initial referendum on the order under section 6806 (a) of this title is completed.
(B) Right to receive refund
(i) In general The order shall provide that, subject to subparagraph (C) and the conditions specified in clause (ii), any qualified handler shall have the right to demand and receive from the PromoFlor Council out of the escrow account a one-time refund of any assessments paid by or on behalf of the qualified handler during the time period specified in subparagraph (A)(ii), if—
(III) the qualified handler demands the refund prior to the conduct of the referendum on the order under section 6806 (a) of this title; and
(ii) Conditions The right of a qualified handler to receive a refund under clause (i) shall be subject to the following conditions:
(I) The demand shall be made in accordance with regulations, on a form, and within a time period specified by the PromoFlor Council.
(II) The refund shall be made only on submission of proof satisfactory to the PromoFlor Council that the qualified handler paid the assessment for which the refund is demanded.
(III) If the amount in the escrow account required under subparagraph (A) is not sufficient to refund the total amount of assessments demanded by all qualified handlers determined eligible for refunds and the order is not approved in the referendum on the order under section 6806 (a) of this title, the PromoFlor Council shall prorate the amount of all such refunds among all eligible qualified handlers that demand the refund.
(C) Program approved
The order shall provide that, if the order is approved in the referendum conducted under section 6806 (a) of this title, there shall be no refunds made, and all funds in the escrow account shall be returned to the PromoFlor Council for use by the PromoFlor Council in accordance with the other provisions of the order.
(5) Use of assessment funds
The order shall provide that assessment funds (less any refunds expended under the terms of the order required under paragraph (4)) shall be used for payment of costs incurred in implementing and administering the order, with provision for a reasonable reserve, and to cover the administrative costs incurred by the Secretary in implementing and administering this chapter.
(6) Postponement of collections
(i) In general Subject to the other provisions of this paragraph and notwithstanding any other provision of this chapter, the PromoFlor Council may grant a postponement of the payment of an assessment under this subsection for any qualified handler that establishes that the handler is financially unable to make the payment.
(ii) Requirements and procedures A handler described in clause (i) shall establish that the handler is financially unable to make the payment in accordance with application and documentation requirements and review procedures established under rules recommended by the PromoFlor Council, approved by the Secretary, and issued after public notice and opportunity for comment in accordance with section 553 of title 5 and without regard to sections 556 and 557 of such title.
(B) Criteria and responsibility for determinations
The PromoFlor Council may grant a postponement under subparagraph (A) only if the handler demonstrates by the submission of an opinion of an independent certified public accountant, and by submission of other documentation required under the rules established under subparagraph (A)(ii), that the handler is insolvent or will be unable to continue to operate if the handler is required to pay the assessment when otherwise due.
(C) Period of postponement
(i) In general The time period of a postponement and the terms and conditions of the payment of each assessment that is postponed under this paragraph shall be established by the PromoFlor Council, in accordance with rules established under the procedures specified in subparagraph (A)(ii), so as to appropriately reflect the demonstrated needs of the qualified handler.
The order shall prohibit the use of any funds received by the PromoFlor Council in any manner for the purpose of influencing legislation or government action or policy, except that the funds may be used by the PromoFlor Council for the development and recommendation to the Secretary of amendments to the order.
(j) Books and records; reports
(1) In general
The order shall provide that each qualified handler shall maintain, and make available for inspection, such books and records as are required by the order and file reports at the time, in the manner, and having the content required by the order, to the end that such information is made available to the Secretary and the PromoFlor Council as is appropriate for the administration or enforcement of this chapter, the order, or any regulation issued under this chapter.
(2) Confidentiality requirement
(A) In general
Information obtained from books, records, or reports under paragraph (1) or subsection (h)(6) of this section, or from reports required under section 6805 (b)(3) of this title, shall be kept confidential by all officers and employees of the Department of Agriculture and by the staff and agents of the PromoFlor Council.
(B) Suits and hearings
Information described in subparagraph (A) may be disclosed to the public only—
(i) in a suit or administrative hearing brought at the request of the Secretary, or to which the Secretary or any officer of the United States is a party, involving the order; and
(C) General statements and publications
Nothing in this paragraph may be construed to prohibit—
(i) the issuance of general statements, based on the reports, of the number of persons subject to the order or statistical data collected from the reports, if the statements do not identify the information furnished by any person; or
(3) Lists of importers
The order shall provide that the staff of the PromoFlor Council shall periodically review lists of importers of cut flowers and cut greens to determine whether persons on the lists are subject to the order.
(k) Consultations with industry experts
(1) In general
The order shall provide that the PromoFlor Council, from time to time, may seek advice from and consult with experts from the production, import, wholesale, and retail segments of the cut flowers and cut greens industry to assist in the development of promotion, consumer information, and related research plans and projects.
(2) Special committees
(A) In general
For the purposes described in paragraph (1), the order shall authorize the appointment of special committees composed of persons other than PromoFlor Council members.
(l) Other terms of order
The order shall contain such other terms and provisions, consistent with this chapter, as are necessary to carry out this chapter (including provision for the assessment of interest and a charge for each late payment of assessments under subsection (h) of this section and for carrying out section 6805 of this title).
Source(Pub. L. 103–190, § 5,Dec. 14, 1993, 107 Stat. 2272.)
Transfer of Functions
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