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Proposed Rule

Cranberries Grown in States of Massachusetts, et. al.; Continuance Referendum

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AGENCY:

Agricultural Marketing Service, USDA.

ACTION:

Referendum order.

SUMMARY:

This document directs that a referendum be conducted among eligible producers of cranberries grown in the states of Massachusetts, Rhode Island, Connecticut, New Jersey, Wisconsin, Michigan, Minnesota, Oregon, Washington, and Long Island in the State of New York, to determine whether they favor continuance of the marketing order regulating the handling of cranberries grown in the production area.

DATES:

The referendum will be conducted from May 4 through May 26, 2015. To vote in this referendum, producers must have produced cranberries within the designated production area during the period September 1, 2013, through August 31, 2014.

ADDRESSES:

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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SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

Pursuant to Marketing Agreement and Order No. 929, as amended (7 CFR part 929), 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 the producers. The referendum shall be conducted from May 4 through May 26, 2015, among cranberry growers in the production area. Only cranberry producers that were engaged in the production of cranberries, during the period of September 1, 2013, through August 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 terminate the order if less than 50 percent of the producers voting in the referendum and producers of less than 50 percent of the volume of cranberries represented in the referendum favor continuance.

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 1,300 producers of cranberries to cast a ballot. Participation is voluntary. Ballots postmarked after May 26, 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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List of Subjects in 7 CFR Part 929

  • Cranberries
  • Marketing Agreements
  • Reporting and recordkeeping requirements
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Authority: 7 U.S.C. 601-674.

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Dated: April 16, 2015.

Rex A. Barnes,

Associate Administrator, Agricultural Marketing Service.

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[FR Doc. 2015-09282 Filed 4-21-15; 8:45 am]

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