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Rule

Rules of Practice Governing Formal Adjudicatory Proceedings Instituted by the Secretary Under Various Statutes

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Information about this document as published in the Federal Register.

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AGENCY:

Office of the Secretary, USDA.

ACTION:

Final rule.

SUMMARY:

This amendment expands the scope and applicability of the Department's uniform rules of practice governing adjudicatory proceedings to include actions initiated under the Organic Foods Production Act of 1990.

DATES:

Effective Date: April 4, 2008.

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FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

Christine M. Sarcone, Director, Legislative and Regulatory Review Staff, Agricultural Marketing Service, U.S. Department of Agriculture, 1400 Independence Avenue, SW., Room 2622-South, Washington, DC 20250-1417. Telephone: (202) 720-3203; Facsimile: (202) 690-3767.

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SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

The Organic Foods Production Act of 1990, as amended (7 U.S.C. 6501-6522) (OFPA) authorizes enforcement actions against, among other things, any person found to be in violation of the OFPA or a regulation issued thereunder.

The Department's uniform rules of practice (7 CFR part 1, subpart H), which govern the conduct of adjudicatory proceedings under numerous statutes, have been in effect since February 1, 1977. Accordingly, to insure consistency and uniformity in the conduct of the Department's administrative proceedings, it has been determined that proceedings initiated under the OFPA should also be governed by these uniform procedures. This rule relates to internal agency management. Therefore, this rule is exempt from the provisions of Executive Orders 12866 and 12988. Moreover, pursuant to 5 U.S.C. 553, notice of proposed rulemaking and opportunity for comment are not required for this rule, and it may be made effective less than 30 days after publication in the Federal Register. In addition, under 5 U.S.C. 804, this rule is not subject to congressional review under the Small Business Regulatory Enforcement Fairness Act of 1996, Public Law 104-121. Finally, this action is not a rule as defined by the Regulatory Flexibility Act, 5 U.S.C. 601 et seq., and thus is exempt from the provisions of that Act.

Paperwork Reduction Act

This rule contains no information collections or recordkeeping requirements under the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995 (44 U.S.C. 3501 et seq.).

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List of Subjects in 7 CFR Part 1

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For the reasons set forth in the preamble, Title 7 subtitle A is amended as follows:

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PART 1—ADMINISTRATIVE REGULATIONS

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1. The authority citation for part 1 continues to read as follows:

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Authority: 5 U.S.C. 301, unless otherwise noted.

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2. The authority citation for part 1, subpart H is revised to read as follows:

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Authority: 5 U.S.C. 301; 7 U.S.C. 61, 87e, 228, 268, 499o, 608c(14), 1592, 1624(b), 2151, 2279e, 2621, 2714, 2908, 3812, 4610, 4815, 4910, 6009, 6107, 6207, 6307, 6411, 6519, 6520, 6808, 7107, 7734, 8313; 15 U.S.C. 1828; 16 U.S.C. 620d, 1540(f), 3373; 21 U.S.C. 104, 111, 117, 120, 122, 127, 134e, 134f, 135a, 154, 463(b), 621, 1043; 43 U.S.C. 1740; 7 CFR 2.35, 2.41.

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3. In § 1.131, paragraph (a), the following statutory reference is added in alphabetical order:

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Scope and applicability of this subpart.

(a) * * *

Organic Foods Production Act of 1990, sections 2119 and 2120 (7 U.S.C. 6519, 6520).

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Dated: March 27, 2008.

Edward T. Schafer,

Secretary of Agriculture.

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[FR Doc. E8-6764 Filed 4-3-08; 8:45 am]

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