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AB-243 California Beef Commission.(2017-2018)

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Date Published: 06/13/2017 09:00 PM
AB243:v96#DOCUMENT

Amended  IN  Senate  June 13, 2017
Amended  IN  Assembly  April 18, 2017
Amended  IN  Assembly  March 21, 2017

CALIFORNIA LEGISLATURE— 2017–2018 REGULAR SESSION

Assembly Bill No. 243


Introduced by Assembly Member Cooper
(Coauthor: Assembly Member Caballero)
(Coauthor: Senator Coauthors: Senators Galgiani and Wilk)

January 30, 2017


An act to amend, repeal, and add Section 64691.7 of, and to add Chapter 2.5 (commencing with Section 65001) to Part 2 of Division 22 of of, the Food and Agricultural Code, relating to food and agriculture, and making an appropriation therefor.


LEGISLATIVE COUNSEL'S DIGEST


AB 243, as amended, Cooper. California Beef Commission.
Existing law, the California Beef Council Law, establishes the California Beef Council, comprised of 20 members and 20 alternate members appointed by the Secretary of Food and Agriculture to perform various advisory and other duties relating to the California beef industry. The California Beef Council Law establishes a $1 fee per head on each sale of cattle and calves to administer the California Beef Council Law and authorizes a fee greater than $1 if approved by producers, as specified. Law, and requires the fee to be collected from the seller by the operator of the stockyard, live auction market, slaughterhouse, or feedlot, or from the seller along with brand inspection fees by the Bureau of Livestock Identification. Existing law also provides that the fee from the sale of calves exempt from brand inspection that is not collected in the manner specified above is required to be collected by the purchaser, for payment to the secretary. Existing law generally provides that if a fee is not deducted from the seller it shall be paid by the purchaser or slaughterer.
This bill would instead require the fee from the sale of cattle or calves exempt from a brand inspection that is not collected from the seller in the manner specified above to be charged and collected in a manner determined by the Department of Food and Agriculture, and would delete the provision generally providing that if a fee is not deducted from the seller it shall be paid by the purchaser or slaughterer. The bill would make those provisions operative only if an implementation referendum is conducted and the California Beef Commission Law is enacted.
This bill would also establish the California Beef Commission Law (the law) for similar purposes for which the California Beef Council Law is established and to augment and support the work of the California Beef Council. The bill would create the California Beef Commission, which would be comprised of 11 members and 11 alternate members appointed by the secretary who are also may be members of the California Beef Council. The bill would provide for reimbursement of traveling and other expenses incurred by commission members in the performance of their duties, unless the expenses are incurred for discharging similar duties reimbursed by the California Beef Council. The bill would set forth the powers and duties of the commission, including administering any governmental program related to the California cattle, beef, and beef products industry. The bill would exempt the commission or any person acting pursuant to the law’s provisions from various consumer protection laws, including the Cartwright Act and the Unfair Practices Act. The bill would provide for an assessment of $1 per head of cattle to be paid on each sale of cattle and calves to carry out the law’s provisions and would authorize a fee an assessment greater than $1 to be charged if certain procedural requirements are met. The bill would authorize the commission to expend those funds for purposes of implementing the bill, thereby making an appropriation. The bill would require the secretary to conduct an initial referendum of producers to approve a mandatory fee to implement the law’s provisions and would make operation of the law’s provisions contingent upon approval of producers by referendum, except as specified. The bill would provide for termination of the commission by referendum of producers, as specified.
Existing constitutional provisions require that a statute that limits the right of access to the meetings of public bodies or the writings of public officials and agencies be adopted with findings demonstrating the interest protected by the limitation and the need for protecting that interest.
This bill would make legislative findings to that effect.
Vote: MAJORITY   Appropriation: YES   Fiscal Committee: YES   Local Program: NO  

The people of the State of California do enact as follows:


SECTION 1.

 Section 64691.7 of the Food and Agricultural Code is amended to read:

64691.7.
 (a) The fees required pursuant to Section 64691 shall be due and payable as follows:

(a)

(1) The fee for cattle or calves, whether originating in the state or out-of-state, shall be paid by the seller. The fee shall be charged and collected from the seller or from the seller’s account and paid to the director secretary by each operator of any stockyard, livestock auction market, slaughterhouse, or registered feedlot in the state. The fee is due and payable to the director secretary on or before the 15th day of the month next succeeding the month in which the cattle and calves are sold. Fees which are not collected in the manner provided in this subdivision paragraph shall be collected from the seller by the Bureau of Livestock Identification at the time that brand inspection fees are collected.

(b)

(2) The fee for cattle or calves for which the fee would not otherwise be collected pursuant to subdivision (a) paragraph (1) and which that are also exempt from brand inspection, inspection shall be charged and collected from the seller or from the seller’s account by the purchaser and paid to the director secretary in the manner specified in subdivision (a). paragraph (1).

(c)

(3) Any fees which that are not collected in the manner specified in subdivision (a) or (b) paragraph (1) or (2) shall be paid to the director secretary directly by the seller on or before the 15th day of the month next succeeding the month in which the sale occurs.

(d)

(4) A fee shall be paid for each head of cattle or calves slaughtered in the state unless specifically exempted by Section 64691 or 64702. If the fee is not deducted from the seller it shall be paid by the purchaser or slaughterer and is due and payable in the manner provided in this section
(b) This section shall become inoperative and is repealed on the date on which Section 64691.7, as added by Assembly Bill 243 of the 2017–18 Regular Session of the Legislature, becomes operative.

SEC. 2.

 Section 64691.7 is added to the Food and Agricultural Code, to read:

64691.7.
 (a) The fees required pursuant to Section 64691 shall be due and payable as follows:
(1) The fee for cattle or calves, whether originating in the state or out-of-state, shall be paid by the seller. The fee shall be charged and collected from the seller or from the seller’s account and paid to the secretary by each operator of any stockyard, livestock auction market, slaughterhouse, or registered feedlot in the state. The fee is due and payable to the secretary on or before the 15th day of the month next succeeding the month in which the cattle and calves are sold. Fees which are not collected in the manner provided in this paragraph shall be collected from the seller by the Bureau of Livestock Identification at the time that brand inspection fees are collected.
(2) The fee for cattle or calves for which the fee would not otherwise be collected pursuant to paragraph (1) and that are also exempt from brand inspection shall be charged and collected from the seller or from the seller’s account by the purchaser and paid to the secretary in the manner determined by the department.
(3) Any fees that are not collected in the manner specified in paragraph (1) or (2) shall be paid to the secretary directly by the seller on or before the 15th day of the month next succeeding the month in which the sale occurs.
(4) A fee shall be paid for each head of cattle or calves slaughtered in the state unless specifically exempted by Section 64691 or 64702.
(b) This section shall become operative only if an implementation referendum pursuant to Section 65062 is conducted and Chapter 2.5 (commencing with Section 65001) becomes operative.

SECTION 1.SEC. 3.

 Chapter 2.5 (commencing with Section 65001) is added to Part 2 of Division 22 of the Food and Agricultural Code, to read:
CHAPTER  2.5. California Beef Commission Law
Article  1. General

65001.
 The Legislature finds and declares all of the following:
(a) The production, processing, manufacture, and distribution of beef and beef products constitute a paramount industry of this state that not only provides substantial revenues for the state but also furnishes essential foods that are vital to the public health and welfare.
(b) The raising of beef and dairy cattle provides a viable living for many Californians and supports rural communities that depend on the responsible use of their adjacent range and forest lands to promote their economies. Livestock producers are stewards of the resources they manage and the existence of ranching in California serves the public by providing numerous environmental and aesthetic benefits that would otherwise be lost without the use of California’s various working landscapes.
(c) The stabilization, maintenance, and expansion of the cattle industry of California and for the expansion of state, nationwide, and foreign markets for beef and other cattle products are necessary to ensure the consuming public an adequate supply of foods that are indispensable in a proper human diet. The essentiality of beef and beef products in proper human nutrition and to the maintenance of a high level of public health is such as to require that the public be made thoroughly aware thereof and be protected against misrepresentation and deception by disseminating accurate and scientific information relative to the healthful qualities of beef and beef products, their various classifications, and the food values and industrial and medicinal uses thereof, the methods, care care, and precautions necessary to their proper production, processing, manufacture, and distribution, and the necessary costs and expenses thereof, and the necessity and desirability on the part of the public of using and consuming beef and beef products of the highest standards of quality.
(d) The commission’s form of administration created by this chapter is uniquely situated to provide those engaged in the production of cattle and beef the opportunity to avail themselves of the benefits of collective action in advertising, promotion, food safety, production research, nutrition, marketing research, the collection and dissemination of production and related statistics, and public education.

65002.
 The purposes of this chapter are as follows:
(a) To augment and support the work conducted by the California Beef Council.
(b) To enable the cattle industry, with the aid of the state, to develop, maintain, and expand the state, nationwide, and foreign markets for beef and beef products produced, processed, manufactured, sold, or distributed in this state for human consumption, and the use and consumption of these beef and beef products in those markets.
(c) To enhance the reputation of the California cattle industry, create a more receptive environment for California cattle producers to operate, and improve the competitiveness of California cattle producers in both the national and international marketplace.
(d) To authorize and enable the secretary and the appointed governing body of the commission to formulate and effectuate, directly or in cooperation with other agencies and parties, research relating to the nutritional qualities of beef and beef products, public consumption patterns and trends, sales stimulation, and consumer or other educational programs designed to increase the use and consumption of beef and beef products for human consumption.
(e) To enable the commission to present facts to and negotiate with local, state, federal, and foreign agencies on matters that affect the California cattle industry and the production of beef and beef products as well as educate those effecting policy likely to impact California cattle producers or beef and beef products.
(f) To provide funds for the administration and enforcement of this chapter by mandatory fees to be collected in the manner that is prescribed in this chapter, unless producers elect to receive a refund of those funds pursuant to Section 65076.

65003.
 The production of beef and beef products in this state is hereby declared to be affected with a public interest. This chapter is enacted in the exercise of the police power of this state for the purposes of protecting the health, peace, safety, and general welfare of the people of this state.

65004.
 No action taken by the commission, or by any individual in accordance with this chapter or with the rules and regulations adopted under this chapter, shall be deemed a violation of the Cartwright Act (Chapter 2 (commencing with Section 16700) of Part 2 of Division 7 of the Business and Professions Code), the Unfair Practices Act (Chapter 4 (commencing with Section 17000) of Part 2 of Division 7 of the Business and Professions Code), or any rule of statutory or common law against monopolies or combinations in restraint of trade.

65005.
 This chapter shall be liberally construed. If any provision of this chapter or the application of this chapter to any person or circumstances is held invalid, the invalidity shall not affect other provisions or applications of the chapter that can be given effect without the invalid provision or application, and to this end the provisions of this chapter are severable.

65006.
 It is hereby declared as a matter of legislative determination that commission members and alternates are intended to represent and further the interest of a particular industry concerned and that this representation and furtherance is intended to serve the public interest. Accordingly, the Legislature finds that with respect to persons who are elected or appointed to the commission, the particular industry concerned is tantamount to and constitutes the public generally within the meaning of Section 87103 of the Government Code.

Article  2. Definitions

65011.
 Unless the context otherwise requires, the definitions in this article govern the construction of this chapter.

65012.
 (a) “Beef” means the meat of cattle and includes veal.
(b) “Beef packer” means a person who acquires or owns cattle for the purpose of processing into beef and beef products.
(c) “Beef products” means edible, industrial, and medicinal products produced in whole or in part from beef or cattle including veal products.
(d) “Cattle” and “beef cattle” are synonymous and mean bovine animals of any breed, regardless of age.
(e) “Cattle feeder” means a producer raising cattle in confined spaces for the purposes of finishing cattle for market.
(f) “Commission” means the California Beef Commission.
(g) “Council” means the California Beef Council.
(h) “Department” means the Department of Food and Agriculture.
(i) “Ex officio member” means a nonvoting member of the commission.
(j) “Fiscal year” means the same fiscal year adopted by the council.
(k) “Member” means any member of the commission.
(l) “Producer” is a person who owns or acquires ownership of beef or dairy cattle, and who, upon request, provides proof of ownership of cattle or, for purposes of voting pursuant to this chapter, has owned beef or dairy cattle within the same calendar year as the vote occurs. A person is not a producer if the person’s only share in the proceeds of the sale of cattle or beef is a sales commission, handling fee, or other service fee.
(m) “Range cattle producer” means a person who owns and raises cattle for the purpose of producing beef and beef products.
(n) “Secretary” means the Secretary of Food and Agriculture.

Article  3. California Beef Commission

65021.
 There is in the state government the California Beef Commission that consists of 11 members and 11 alternates appointed by the secretary, all each of whom shall be a producer in this state who is a range cattleman, cattle producer, cattle feeder, dairyman, dairy producer, or beef packer, with the exception of the public member who shall be a citizen and resident of this state.

65022.
 Each member and alternate shall may also be an appointed member or appointed alternate of the council.

65023.
 (a) The secretary or his or her the secretary’s designee shall serve as an ex officio member.
(b) The commission may appoint other appropriate persons as ex officio members.

65024.
 The secretary shall appoint to the commission at least three range cattlemen, cattle producers, three cattle feeders, three dairymen, dairy producers, one beef packer, and one public member to represent the general public. The secretary shall use the same formula in the appointment of alternates.

65025.
 Except as otherwise provided in this section, the public member and his or her the public member’s alternate shall have all the powers, rights, and privileges of any other member or alternate, respectively, on the commission, except that the public member or his or her the public member’s alternate shall not have a vote on issues regarding the fees assessment established pursuant to Section 65071.

65026.
 (a) The terms of office of the members and alternates of the commission shall be three years. At the discretion of the secretary, the first appointments made under this chapter shall be so made that the terms of three members and their the three members’ alternates shall expire at the end of one year, three members and their the three members’ alternates shall expire at the end of two years, and three members and their the three members’ alternates shall expire at the end of three years.
(b) Any vacancy that occurs during the unexpired term shall be filled by the secretary for the unexpired term from eligible nominees who have been appointed to the council. No commission member or alternate shall serve more than two consecutive three-year terms. Service as an alternate does not disqualify a person to then serve two terms as a member, and a member who was appointed for a one-year or two-year term may serve two additional three-year terms.
(c) If the secretary removes a member or alternate of the council that is also a member of the commission, the member or alternate shall be deemed removed from the commission and, upon removal, the vacancy shall be filled in the manner as provided in subdivision (a).

65027.
 A majority of the members of the commission shall constitute a quorum for the transaction of all business, including the election of officers. The commission may continue to transact business at a meeting at which a quorum is initially present, notwithstanding the withdrawal of members, provided any action is approved by the requisite majority of the required quorum.

65028.
 (a) The commission shall annually select a chairman chairperson and vice chairman chairperson from its membership, to serve at the commission’s pleasure, who, together with three other members selected annually by the commission, shall constitute an executive committee.
(b) The executive committee shall have and exercise powers of the commission as the commission may delegate to it.
(c) At the discretion of the commission, the chairman chairperson and vice chairman chairperson of the commission may also serve concurrently as the chairman chairperson and vice chairman chairperson of the council.

65029.
 (a) The commission shall have two regular meetings each year at times and places determined by the commission.
(b) The times for regular meetings shall be fixed so that there is an interval of at least four months between each meeting.
(c) Unless directed by the secretary or a majority of the members of the commission, the commission shall convene the two regular meetings in conjunction with the council.
(d) The commission may hold additional meetings at any time and place at the call of the chairman chairperson or upon the written request of three members of the commission.
(e) The executive committee shall have two regular meetings each year and may hold additional meetings at any time and place at the call of the chairman chairperson or on call of a majority of the members of the executive committee.

65030.
 (a) Members of the commission shall be reimbursed for necessary traveling and other expenses incurred in the performance of their official duties.
(b) Members of the commission shall not be reimbursed for necessary travel and other expenses for discharging similar duties that have already been reimbursed by the council.

65031.
 An alternate member of the commission shall sit as a regular member of the commission if the member fails for any reason to attend any meeting of the commission. An alternate member shall be compensated and reimbursed in the same manner and to the same extent as a regular member when so serving and when so serving has all the powers, duties, liabilities, and immunities of the member in whose place he or she is serving, except that the alternate to the chairman chairperson or vice chairman chairperson shall not succeed to the functions of these offices.

65032.
 The secretary or his or her the secretary’s representative shall be notified and may attend each meeting of the commission. However, the secretary or his or her the secretary’s representative is not permitted to attend an executive session of the commission called for the purpose of discussing potential or actual litigation against the department.

65033.
 No member or alternate of the commission shall receive a salary.

65034.
 All funds received by any person from the assessments levied under this chapter or otherwise received by the commission shall be deposited in banks designated by the commission and shall be disbursed by order of the commission through an agent or agents as it may designate for that purpose. A private agent or agents, other than the department, shall be bonded by a fidelity bond, executed by a surety company authorized to transact business in this state, in favor of the commission, in an amount of not less than twenty-five thousand dollars ($25,000).

65035.
 All funds received by the commission shall be deposited in bank accounts created by the commission separate from those accounts established by the council containing funds received pursuant to Section 64691. Funds collected by the commission pursuant to Section 65071 shall not be commingled with funds collected by the council pursuant to Section 64691.

65036.
 The state is not liable for the acts of the commission or its contracts. Payments of all claims arising by reason of the administration of this chapter or acts of the commission are limited to the funds collected by the commission. No member or alternate of the commission, or any employee or agent thereof, is personally liable for the contracts of the commission. No member or alternate of the commission, or any employee or agent thereof, is responsible individually in any way to any other person for errors in judgment, mistakes, or other acts, either of commission or omission, as principal, agent, or employee, except for his or her own individual acts of dishonesty or crime. No member or alternate of the commission, or any employee or agent thereof, is responsible individually for any act or omission of any other member or alternate of the commission, or any employee or agent thereof. No member or alternate of the commission, or any employee or agent thereof, is liable for the default of any other member or alternate of the commission, or any employee or agent thereof.

65037.
 The commission may sue and be sued and enter into contracts. Copies of its proceedings, records, and acts, when authenticated, shall be admissible in evidence in all courts of the state and shall be prima facie evidence of the truth of all statements therein.

Article  4. Powers and Duties

65041.
 The powers and duties of the commission shall include, but are not limited to, all of those contained in this article.

65042.
 The commission may adopt and from time to time alter, rescind, modify, and amend all proper and necessary bylaws, rules, regulations, and orders in accordance with commission procedures for purposes of carrying out this chapter, including rules for appeals from any bylaw, rule, regulation, operating procedure, or order of the commission.

65043.
 The commission may administer and enforce this chapter and do and perform all acts and exercise all powers incidental to, or in connection with, or deemed reasonably necessary to, promote, maintain, and enhance the California cattle industry and the production of beef and beef products.

65044.
 (a) The commission may employ a person to serve at the pleasure of the commission as the executive director of the commission, and other personnel, including legal counsel of its choice, necessary to carry out this chapter. If any person employed by the commission engages in any conduct that the secretary determines is not in the public interest or that is in violation of this chapter, the secretary shall notify the commission of the conduct and request that corrective and, if appropriate, disciplinary action, action be taken by the commission. If the commission fails or refuses to correct the situation or to take disciplinary action satisfactory to the secretary, the secretary may suspend or discharge the person.
(b) At the discretion of the commission, the executive director of the commission may be the same as the executive director of the council.
(c) The commission may retain additional staff or agents of the commission to discharge the duties outlined in this chapter.
(d) At the discretion of the commission, staff may be the same as those employed by the council.
(e) Agents serving on behalf of the commission to discharge the duties of the commission outlined in this chapter are not required to be parties also serving as agents of the council.

65045.
 If directed by a majority of commission members and approval is granted by the secretary, the commission may administer any governmental program related to the California cattle, beef, and beef products industries.

65046.
 The commission may appoint committees composed of both members, alternates alternates, and nonmembers not serving with the commission in any official capacity to advise the commission in carrying out this chapter.

65047.
 The commission shall approve the compensation for all employees and agents the executive director and any agents or contractors of the commission.

65048.
 (a) The commission may establish offices and incur expenses, enter into any and all contracts and agreements, create liabilities, develop, own, and control the use of any intellectual or physical property, including real estate for the purpose of housing the operations of the commission, and borrow funds in advance of receipt of assessments as may be necessary in the opinion of the commission for the proper administration and enforcement of this chapter and the performance of its duties.
(b) At the discretion of the commission, offices and physical property utilized by the commission may be the same as those utilized by the council.
(c) The commission may offset expenses incurred by the council to establish offices, enter into any and all contracts and agreements, create liabilities liabilities, and develop, own, and control the use of any intellectual or physical property.

65049.
 The commission shall keep books, records, and accounts of all its transactions, dealings, contracts, agreements, funds, and expenditures as it deems necessary. Those books, records, and accounts shall at all times be open to inspection and audit by the secretary. The commission shall be subject to an annual audit by an auditing firm selected by the commission with the concurrence of the secretary. The audit shall be made a part of an annual report to be posted on the commission’s Internet Web site and submitted to the department. In addition, the secretary may, as he or she determines necessary, conduct, or cause to be conducted, a fiscal and compliance audit of the commission.

65050.
 The commission shall be charged with exercising any and all necessary duties to accomplish the objectives outlined in this chapter.

65051.
 The commission may accept contributions from private, state, and federal entities to carry out the duties authorized by this chapter.

65052.
 The commission may collect information about California beef and dairy production and publish and distribute distribute, without charge, a bulletin or other communication to all eligible producers.

65053.
 The commission shall establish an assessment rate to defray operating costs of the commission.

65054.
 (a) The commission shall establish an annual budget according to generally accepted accounting practices. The commission shall prepare annually summarized statements of the activities in which it has been engaged in the previous annual period, and of the activities in which it proposes to engage in the ensuing annual period. The statements shall be made available to all eligible producers at their request.
(b) Prior to Before the adoption of the annual budget, the commission shall submit the proposed annual budget and its statement of contemplated activities to the secretary for his or her concurrence.
(c) The annual budget and statement of contemplated activities shall be concurred in by the secretary prior to disbursement of funds.

65055.
 When the secretary is required to concur in a decision of the commission, the secretary shall give his or her response to the commission within 15 working days from notification of the decision. The secretary shall set forth in writing with specificity the reasons for any refusal to concur. The secretary’s response may be a requirement that additional information be provided.

65056.
 The commission shall reimburse the secretary for all expenditures incurred by the secretary in carrying out his or her duties and responsibilities pursuant to this chapter. However, a court may, if it finds that the secretary acted arbitrarily or capriciously in restricting the activities or functions of the commission, relieve the commission of the responsibility for payment of the secretary’s legal costs with regard to that action.

65057.
 (a) The secretary may require the commission to correct or cease any existing activity or function that is determined by the secretary not to be in the public interest or that is in violation of this chapter.
(b) If the commission refuses or fails to cease those activities or functions or to make the corrections as required by the secretary, the secretary may, upon written notice, suspend all or a portion of the activities or functions of the commission until the time that the cessation or correction of activities or functions as required by the secretary has been accomplished by the commission.
(c) Actions of the commission in violation of the written notice are without legal force or effect. The secretary, to the extent feasible, shall issue the written notice before the commission entering into any contractual relationship affecting the existing or proposed activities or functions that are the subject of the written notice.
(d) Upon service of the written notice, the secretary shall notify the commission in writing of the specific acts that the secretary determines are not in the public interest or are in violation of this chapter, his or her reasons for requiring a cessation or correction of specific existing or proposed activities or functions, and recommendations that will make the activities or functions acceptable.

65058.
 The secretary shall not only prohibit actions by the commission that are consistent inconsistent with the powers and duties provided to the commission by this chapter. chapter, in violation of this chapter, or not in the public interest.

65059.
 The commission and the secretary shall keep confidential and shall not disclose, except when required by court order after a hearing in a judicial proceeding, all lists in their possession of persons subject to this chapter. However, the commission shall establish procedures to provide access to communication with other producers and handlers regarding noncommercial matters affecting the commission and persons subject to its jurisdiction. The access shall not include the actual release of the list of the names and addresses of producers and packers in the possession of the commission or the secretary. In addition, notwithstanding any other law, all proprietary or trade secret information developed or gathered pursuant to this chapter, except as provided in Section 65077, including, but not limited to, names and addresses of packers and producers, cattle and or beef produced, bought bought, or sold, prices paid, and the products of research obtained by the commission, or by the department on behalf of the commission, from any source is confidential and shall not be considered a public record as that term is defined in Section 6252 of the Government Code.

65060.
 The commission may investigate and prosecute civil violations of this chapter.

Article  5. Implementation and Suspension of Operations

65061.
 (a) On or before June 1, 2018, the council shall submit to the secretary for review a list of producers eligible to vote.
(b) The secretary may require auction markets and packers to submit the names and mailing addresses of all producers from whom they acquired cattle in the most recently completed fiscal year. The request for information shall be in writing and shall be filed within 10 days following receipt of the request.
(c) Any producer eligible to vote whose name does not appear on the appropriate list may have his or her name placed on the list by filing with the secretary a signed statement, identify statement identifying himself or herself as a person eligible to vote. Failure to be on the list does not exempt the person from paying fees and does not invalidate any votes conducted pursuant to this chapter.
(d) Any producer eligible to vote may contact those on the list regarding the referendum in a form and manner prescribed by the secretary if all expenses associated with those contacts are paid in advance.

65062.
 This chapter, except as necessary to conduct an implementation referendum vote, shall not become operative until the secretary finds that a majority of producers participating in the referendum approve the referendum in an initial referendum vote conducted by the secretary on or before June 1, 2019.

65063.
 The implementation referendum shall advertise the amount to be assessed and declare that the assessment shall be a mandatory fee. The implementation referendum shall also advertise that the commission will accept petitions to refund the fee for any producer subject to this chapter pursuant to Section 65076.

65064.
 The secretary shall establish a period in which to conduct the referendum, that shall not be more than 60 days in duration, and may prescribe additional procedures necessary to conduct the referendum.

65065.
 Nonreceipt of a ballot by an eligible handler or producer shall not invalidate a referendum.

65066.
 If the secretary finds that a favorable vote has been given, the secretary shall certify and give notice of the favorable vote to all producers whose names and addresses are on file with the secretary.

65067.
 If the secretary finds that a favorable vote has not been given for an initial referendum, the secretary shall certify and declare all provisions of this chapter inoperative. The secretary may conduct other implementation referendum votes one year or more after the previous vote has been taken upon the petition of a proponent of the commission.

65068.
 (a) Before the referendum vote conducted by the secretary pursuant to this article, a proponent of the establishment of the commission shall deposit with the secretary the amount that the secretary deems necessary to defray the expenses of analyzing the proposed commission and certifying the necessary list of producers submitted by the council and conducting the vote.
(b) Any funds not used in conducting the referendum established by this article shall be returned to the proponents of the commission who deposited the funds with the secretary.
(c) Upon establishment of the commission, the commission may reimburse the proponents of the commission for any funds deposited with the secretary that were used in carrying out this article, and for any legal expenses and costs incurred in establishing the commission.

65069.
 (a) A referendum among the state’s producers to terminate the commission shall be conducted by the secretary if the secretary receives a petition for a referendum signed by three thousand eligible producers.
(b) If upon the count of the ballots the secretary finds that 30 percent, or more, of all producers established by the secretary have voted and that 60 percent, or more, a majority of the total number of producers voting have assented to the discontinuance and termination of the commission and the programs that are established and maintained pursuant to this chapter, the secretary shall make a finding to that effect and declare the existence of the commission and the programs that are established and maintained pursuant to this chapter discontinued and terminated at the end of the fiscal year in which the referendum is conducted.
(c) On the expiration of this chapter pursuant to this article, the commission shall remain in existence for the purpose of furnishing the secretary with a complete record of its outstanding financial obligations, accrued and to accrue. The secretary shall pay from the money deposited and disbursed any outstanding obligations and any obligations incurred by the secretary and the department under the terms and provisions of this section. Any money that remains shall be retained by the secretary to defray the expenses of formulation, issuance, administration, or enforcement of any subsequent program for beef promotion. If no such program is undertaken within a period of three years from the date of termination of this chapter, the money shall be used to fund activities related to the subject matter of this chapter at the discretion of the secretary.
(d) If upon a count of the ballots the secretary finds that less than 60 percent of the total number of producers voting have assented to discontinuance and termination, the secretary shall make a finding to that effect and the commission and programs that are established and maintained pursuant to this chapter shall continue to remain in full force and effect.

Article  6. Financial Provisions

65071.
 (a) In order to carry out the programs and administer the activities that are conducted pursuant to this chapter, a fee an assessment of one dollar ($1) per head shall be paid on each sale of cattle and calves. The fee assessment shall be charged on all cattle and calves, except the following:
(1) Hides, skins, or the offal of animals.
(2) Any cattle that are transported for purposes other than for sale or slaughter and without a change of ownership.
(3) Any cattle custom slaughtered exclusively for the owner, members of the owner’s household, or the owner’s nonpaying guests or employees.
(4) Any cattle weighing less than 300 200 pounds.
(b) The fee assessment shall not be charged or collected more than once from each owner upon the same animal.

65072.
 (a) Each person who is required to pay or collect the fees assessment shall maintain a complete and accurate record of all transactions subject to fees assessments under this chapter. These records shall contain information required by the secretary relating to the payment or collection of fees, assessments, shall be preserved for a period of two years, and shall be offered and submitted for inspection and audit at any reasonable time upon written demand by the secretary or his or her duly authorized agent.
(b) All information obtained by the secretary or his or her duly authorized agent from any inspection or audit of records shall be confidential and shall not be disclosed except when required in a judicial proceeding.

65073.
 A fee An assessment greater than one dollar ($1) per head on cattle and calves prescribed by Section 65071 shall not be charged pursuant to that section under a mandatory fee payment program, unless and until the greater fee assessment is approved by the producers in this state, by a referendum called for by a proponent of the commission to be submitted to the producers by the secretary. The secretary shall find that the producers have approved a greater fee assessment if the secretary finds that a majority of the producers voting in the referendum voted in favor of charging the greater fee. assessment. Ballots shall be provided to producers from a list provided by the council and approved by the secretary, and to other producers who request a ballot that provide proof of eligibility.

65074.
 (a) The fee assessment for cattle or calves, whether originating in the state or out-of-state, shall be paid by the seller. The fee assessment shall be charged and collected from the seller or from the seller’s account and paid to the commission by each operator of a stockyard, livestock auction market, or slaughter facility. The fee assessment is due and payable to the commission on or before the 15th day of the month next succeeding the month in which the cattle and calves are sold. Fees Assessments that are not collected in the manner provided in this subdivision shall be collected from the seller by the Bureau of Livestock Identification at the time that brand inspection fees are collected.
(b) The fee assessment for cattle or calves for which the fee assessment would not otherwise be collected pursuant to subdivision (a) and that are also exempt from a brand inspection, inspection shall be charged and collected from the seller and paid to the commission in a manner determined by the department.
(c) Any fees assessment that are not collected in the manner specified in subdivision (a) or (b) shall be paid to the commission directly by the seller on or before the 15th day of the month next succeeding the month in which the sale occurs.

65075.
 The fees assessments that are collected by the Bureau of Livestock Identification pursuant to this article shall be forwarded to the secretary at the same time and in the same manner as the inspection fees that are provided for in Article 9 (commencing with Section 21281) of Chapter 6 of Division 10. The secretary shall reimburse, from any money that is collected pursuant to this section, the Bureau of Livestock Identification and any other bureaus or agencies of the state for any additional expenses that are incurred by them in the administration or enforcement of this chapter.

65076.
 Any person who is subject to the fee assessment that is required by Section 65071 may obtain a refund of the fee assessment collected by submitting to the commission a claim for a refund. The claim shall be submitted in writing within 90 days after the date of the brand inspection or the date of payment of the fee assessment to the secretary, whichever date is later. The claim for refund shall contain necessary information as the department may require. require but may not place conditions on the issuance of the refund.

65077.
 All proprietary information obtained or developed pursuant to this article by the commission or the secretary from any source, including, but not limited to, the names and addresses of producers, is confidential and shall not be disclosed except when required by a court order after a hearing in a judicial proceeding. Data that is aggregated from proprietary information is not confidential, and may be disclosed, only if the data does not disclose proprietary information of an individual producer and the data cannot be used to identify an individual producer.

65078.
 Any fee An assessment that is levied pursuant to this chapter is a personal debt of the assessed person.

Article  7. Actions and Penalties

65081.
 A civil penalty not exceeding one thousand dollars ($1,000) may be levied by the commission upon a person who does any of the following:
(a) Willfully renders or furnishes a false report, statement, or record required by the commission or in any way affects the purchase or acquisition of cattle in order to avoid payment of fees.
(b) Fails to render or furnish a report, statement, or record required by the commission.
(c) When engaged in the purchase or acquisition of cattle for finishing or processing, fails or refuses to furnish to the commission or its duly authorized agents, upon request, information concerning the name and address of the persons from whom he or she has received cattle and the quantity received.
(d) Secrete, destroy, or alter records required to be kept by this chapter.

65082.
 The commission shall establish procedures for the purpose of according individuals aggrieved by its actions or determinations an informal hearing before the commission, or before a committee of the commission designated for this purpose. Appeals from decisions of the commission may be made to the secretary. The determination of the secretary shall be subject to judicial review upon petition filed with the appropriate superior court.

65083.
 (a) The commission may commence civil actions and utilize all remedies provided in law or equity for the collection of fees and civil penalties and for obtaining injunctive relief or specific performance relating to this chapter and the rules and regulations adopted under this chapter. A court shall issue to the commission any requested writ of attachment or injunctive relief upon a prima facie showing by verified complaint that a named defendant has violated this chapter or any other rule or regulation of the commission, including, but not limited to, the nonpayment of fees. No bond shall be required to be posted by the commission as a condition for the issuance of any writ of attachment or injunctive relief.
(b) A writ of attachment shall be issued pursuant to Chapter 5 (commencing with Section 485.010) of Title 6.5 of Part 2 of the Code of Civil Procedure, except that the showing specified in Section 485.010 is not required. Injunctive relief shall be issued pursuant to Chapter 3 (commencing with Section 525) of Title 7 of Part 2 of the Code of Civil Procedure, except that the showing of irreparable harm or of inadequate remedy at law specified by Section 526 or 527 is not required.
(c) Upon entry of any final judgment on behalf of the commission against any defendant, the court shall enjoin the defendant from conducting any type of business regarding cattle or beef until there is full compliance with, and satisfaction of, the judgment.
(d) Upon a favorable judgment for the commission, the court may order that the commission be reimbursed for reasonable attorney’s fees and other actual related costs. Venue for these actions is at the domicile or place of business of the defendant or in the county of the principal office of the commission. The commission may be sued only in the county of its principal office.

65084.
 Any action by the commission for any penalty or other remedy that is prescribed under this chapter shall be commenced within three years from the date of discovery of the alleged violation. Any action against the commission by any person shall be commenced within three years from the date of the alleged violation.

65085.
 The commission is not required to allege or prove that an adequate remedy at law does not exist in any action brought under this chapter.

65086.
 If any part of this chapter is for any reason held unconstitutional or invalid as applied to any person or as applied under certain circumstances, that decision shall not affect the remaining portions of this chapter or the application of this chapter to any other persons or under any other circumstance.

65087.
 The termination of this chapter shall not affect or waive any right, duty, obligation, or liability that has arisen or that may thereafter arise in connection with this chapter, release or extinguish any violation of this chapter, or affect or impair any right or remedies of the commission with respect to any violation.

65088.
 When the producer is a corporation or a limited liability company, all of the directors, officers, managers, and members of the corporation or limited liability company in their capacity as individuals shall be included, and any liability for failure to collect or make payment of fees to which a corporate handler or a handler that is a limited liability company may be subject pursuant to this chapter shall include identical liability upon each individual director, officer, manager, or member of the corporation or limited liability company.

SEC. 2.SEC. 4.

 The Legislature finds and declares that Section 1 3 of this act, which adds Sections 65059, 65072, and 65077 of the Food and Agricultural Code, imposes a limitation on the public’s right of access to the meetings of public bodies or the writings of public officials and agencies within the meaning of Section 3 of Article I of the California Constitution. Pursuant to that constitutional provision, the Legislature makes the following findings to demonstrate the interest protected by this limitation and the need for protecting that interest:
In order to protect the personal and financial information of a person subject to the act, it is necessary that this act limit the public’s right of access to that information.