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Agricultural Marketing Service, USDA.
This document directs that a referendum be conducted among eligible producers of avocados grown in South Florida to determine whether they favor continuance of the marketing order regulating the handling of avocados grown in the production area.
The referendum will be conducted from January 12 through January 27, 2015. To vote in this referendum, producers must have produced Florida avocados within the designated production area during the period April 1, 2013, through March 31, 2014.
Copies of the marketing order may be obtained from the referendum agents at 1124 First Street South, Winter Haven, FL 33880, or the Office of the Docket Clerk, Marketing Order and Agreement Division, Fruit and Vegetable Program, AMS, USDA, 1400 Independence Avenue SW., STOP 0237, Washington, DC 20250-0237; Fax: (202) 720-8938; or Internet: www.regulations.gov.
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FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:
Doris Jamieson, Marketing Specialist, or Christian D. Nissen, Regional Director, Southeast Marketing Field Office, Marketing Order and Agreement Division, Fruit and Vegetable Program, AMS, USDA, 1124 First Street South, Winter Haven, FL 33880; Telephone: (863) 324-3375, Fax: (863) 291-8614, or Email: Doris.Jamieson@ams.usda.gov or Christian.Nissen@ams.usda.gov.
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Pursuant to Marketing Order No. 915, as amended (7 CFR part 915), hereinafter referred to as the “order,” and the applicable provisions of the Agricultural Marketing Agreement Act of 1937, as amended (7 U.S.C. 601-674), hereinafter referred to as the “Act,” it is hereby directed that a referendum be conducted to ascertain whether continuance of the order is favored by producers. The referendum shall be conducted from January 12 through January 27, 2015, among Florida avocados growers in the production area. Only Florida avocado producers that were engaged in the production of Florida avocado, during the period of April 1, 2013, through March 31, 2014, may participate in the continuance referendum.
USDA has determined that continuance referenda are an effective means for determining whether producers favor the continuation of marketing order programs. USDA would consider termination of the order if less than two-thirds of the producers voting in the referendum and less than two-thirds of the volume of Florida avocados represented in the referendum favor continuance. In evaluating the merits of continuance versus termination, USDA will not exclusively consider the results of the continuance referendum. USDA will also consider all other relevant information concerning the operation of the order and the relative benefits and disadvantages to producers, handlers, and consumers in order to determine whether continued operation of the order would tend to effectuate the declared policy of the Act.
In accordance with the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995 (44 U.S.C. 3501-3520), the ballot materials to be used in the referendum have been submitted to and approved by the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) and have been assigned OMB No. 0581-0189, Generic Fruit Crops. It has been estimated that it will take an average of 20 minutes for each of the approximately 300 producers of Florida avocados to cast a ballot. Participation is voluntary. Ballots postmarked after January 27, 2015, will not be included in the vote tabulation.
Doris Jamieson and Christian D. Nissen of the Southeast Marketing Field Office, Fruit and Vegetable Program, AMS, USDA, are hereby designated as the referendum agents of the Secretary of Agriculture to conduct this referendum. The procedure applicable to the referendum shall be the “Procedure for the Conduct of Referenda in Connection With Marketing Orders for Fruits, Vegetables, and Nuts Pursuant to the Agricultural Marketing Agreement Act of 1937, as Amended” (7 CFR 900.400-900.407).
Ballots will be mailed to all producers of record and may also be obtained from the referendum agents, or from their appointees.
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- Reporting and recordkeeping requirements
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Dated: November 25, 2014.
Rex A. Barnes,
Associate Administrator, Agricultural Marketing Service.
[FR Doc. 2014-28288 Filed 11-28-14; 8:45 am]
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