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ment made by this section is to authorize the inquiry to ascertain if similar disadvantages in competition are being caused or may be caused to producers or both producers and processors and to impose & similar compensating tax if the Secretary finds that such disadvantages in competition are caused or will be caused.
Section 17 provides that the amendments made to the Agricultural Adjustment Act by the proposed bill are not to invalidate marketing agreements or licenses in force on the date of the enactment of the bill or invalidate acts done under such agreements or licenses on or before or after such date.
CHANGES IN EXISTING LAW
In compliance with paragraph 2a of rule XIII of the Rules of the House of Representatives, changes in the Agricultural Adjustment Act made by the bill are shown as follows: Existing law proposed to be omitted is enclosed in black brackets; new matter is printed in italics; existing law in which no change is proposed is shown in roman.
DECLARATION OF POLICY
(1) To establish and maintain such balance between the production and consumption of agricultural commodities, and such marketing conditions therefor, as will reestablish prices to farmers at a level that will give agricultural commodities a purchasing power with respect to articles that farmers buy, equivalent to the purchasing power of agricultural commodities in the base (period] period; and, in the case of all commodities for which the base period is the prewar period, August 1909 to July 1914, will also reflect current interest payments per acre on farm indebtedness secured by real estate and tax payments per acre on farm real estate, as contrasted with such interest payments, and tax payments during the base period. The base period in the case of all agricultural commodities except (tobacco] tobacco, wool, and mohair shall be the pre-war period, August 1909 July 1914. In the case of tobacco, wool, and mohair the base period shall be the postwar period, August 1919-July 1929.
(2) To approach such equality of purchasing power by gradual correction of the present inequalities therein at as rapid a rate as is deemed feasible in view of the current consumptive demand in domestic and foreign markets.
(3) To protect the consumers' interest by readjusting farm production at such level as will not increase the percentage of the consumers' retail expenditures for agricultural commodities, or products derived therefrom, which is returned to the farmer, above the percentage which was returned to the farmer in the pre-war period, August 1909-July 1914.
Sec. 8. In order to effectuate the declared policy, the Secretary of Agriculture shall have power
(1) To provide for [reduction) adjustment in the acreage or [reduction) adjustment in the production for market, or both, of any basic agricultural commodity, through agreements with producers or by other voluntary methods, and to provide for rental or benefit payments, or payments for expansion of domestic or foreign markets, in connection therewith or upon that part of the production of any basic agricultural commodity required for domestic consumption, in such amounts as the Secretary deems fair and reasonable, to be paid out of any moneys available for such [payments] payments or to be made in quantities of one or more agricultural commodities acquired by the Secretary of Agriculture pursuant to this title; and, in the case of sugar beets or sugarcane, in the event that it shall be established to the satisfaction of the Secretary of Agriculture that returns to growers or producers, under the contracts for the 1933-1934 crop of sugar beets or sugarcane, entered into by and between the processors and producers and/or growers thereof, were reduced by reason of the payment of the processing tax, and/or the corresponding floor stocks tax, on sugar beets or sugarcane, in addition to the foregoing rental or benefit payments, to make such payments, representing in whole or in part such tax, as the Secretary deems fair and reasonable, to producers who agree, or have agreed, to participate in the program for [reduction) adjustment in the acreage or (reduction] adjustment in the production for market, or both, of sugar beets or sugarcane. In the case of rice, the Secretary, in exercising the discretion conferred upon him by this section to provide for rental or benefit payments, is directed to provide in any agreement entered into by him with any rice producer pursuant to this section, upon such terms and conditions as the Secretary determines will best effectuate the declared policy of the Act, that the producer may pledge for production credit in whole or in part his right to any rental or benefit payments under the terms of such agreement and that such producer may designate therein a payee to receive such rental or benefit payments. Under regulations of the Secretary of Agriculture requiring adequate facilities for the storage of any non-perishable agricultural commodity on the farm, inspection and measurement of any such commodity so stored, and the locking and sealing thereof, and such other regulations as may be prescribed by the Secretary of Agriculture for the protection of such commodity and for the marketing thereof, a reasonable percentage of any benefit payment may be advanced on any such commodity so stored. In any such case, such deduction may be made from the amount of the benefit payment as the Secretary of Agriculture determines will reasonably compensate for the cost of inspection and sealing, but no deduction may be made for interest.
(2) After due notice and opportunity for hearing, to enter into marketing agreements with processors, producers, associations of producers, and others engaged in the handling of any agricultural commodity or product thereof, in the current of or in competition with, or so as to burden, obstruct, or in any way affect, interstate or foreign commerce. The making of any such agreement shall not be held to be in violation of any of the antitrust laws of the United States, and any such agreement shall be deemed to be lawful: Provided, That no such agreement shall remain in force after the termination of this Act. For the purpose of carrying out any such agreement the parties thereto shall be eligible for loans from the Reconstruction Finance Corporation under section 5 of the Reconstruction Finance Corporation Act. Such loans shall not be in excess of such amounts as may be authorized by the agreements.
[(3) To issue licenses permitting processors, associations of producers, and others to engage in the handling, in the current of interstate or foreign commerce, of any agricultural commodity or product thereof, or any competing commodity or product thereof. Such licenses shall be subject to such terms and conditions, not in conflict with existing Acts of Congress or regulations pursuant thereto, as may be necessary to eliminate unfair practices or charges that prevent or tend to prevent the effectuation of the declared policy and the restoration of normal economic conditions in the marketing of such commodities or products and the financing thereof. The Secretary of Agriculture may suspend or revoke any such license, after due notice and opportunity for hearing, for violations of the terms or conditions thereof. Any order of the Secretary suspending or revoking any such license shall be final if in accordance with law. Any such person engaged in such handling without a license as required by the Secretary under this section shall be subject to a fine of not more than $1,000 for each day during which the violation continues.]
(3) (A) After due notice and opportunity for hearing, and upon a finding by the Secretary that such action will tend to effectuate the declared policy of this title, to issue licenses to processors, associations of producers, and others engaged in the handling of any agricultural commodity of product thereof, or any competing commodity or product thereof, in the current of or in competition with or so as to burden, obstruct, or in any way affect, interstate or foreign commerce. Such licenses shall provide that such handling may be engaged in by the licensees only upon such terms and conditions, not in conflict with existing Acts of Congress or regulations pursuant thereto, as may be necessary for any one or more of the following purposes:
(1) To eliminate unfair practices or charges that prevent or tend to prevent the effectuation of the declared policy and the restoration of normal economic conditions in the marketing of such commodities or products and the financing thereof.
(2) To make effective any marketing plan set forth in any marketing agreement (or appendix thereto) signed by the persons handling not less than 50 per centum of the volume of the business done in the respective classes of industrial or commercial activity specified in such agreement.
(9) To make effective the marketing plan set forth in any proposed marketing agreement (or appendix thereto), on which a hearing has been held, whenever the Secretary, with the approval of the President, determines-
(a) That the refusal or failure to sign such proposed agreement by the persons handling more than 50 per centum of the volume of business done in any class of industrial or commercial activity specified therein tends to prevent the effectuation of the declared policy with respect to the commodity or product specified in such proposed agreement, and
(b) that the issuance of such license is the only practical means of advancing the interests of the producers of such commodity pursuant to the declared policy, and is approved or favored by at least two-thirds of the producers who, during a representative period determined by the Secretary, have been engaged in the production for market of the commodity specified in such marketing agreement or license, or by producers who, during such representative period, have produced for market at least two-thirds of the volume of
such commodity produced for market during such period. No license shall be issued pursuant to clause (2) or clause (3) of the preceding sentence unless the terms and conditions thereof (a) have been set forth in an executed or proposed marketing agreement, as the case may be, or in an appendix thereto, and (b) are made applicable only to persons in the respective classes of industrial or commercial activity specified in such executed or proposed agreement. Except in the case of milk and its products, tobacco, and sugar beets and sugarcane, no license issued under such clause (3) shall be effective with respect to any commodity which on April 1, 1935, is defined, under section 11, as a basic agricultural commodity. No license shall be issued under such clause (3) which is applicable to all production areas or marketing areas, or both, of any commodity or product thereof unless the Secretary finds that the issuance of several licenses applicable to the respective regional production areas or regional marketing areas, or both, as the case may be, of the commodity or product would not effectively carry out the declared policy of this title. Licenses issued under such clause (3) shall be limited in their application to the smallest regional production areas or regional marketing areas, or both, as the case may be, which the Secretary finds practicable consistenily with carrying out such declared policy. All licenses issued under such clause (3) which are applicable to the same commodity or product thereof shall, so far as practicable, prescribe such different terms applicable to different production areas and marketing areas as the Secretary finds necessary to give due recognition to the differences in production and marketing of such commodity or product in such areas. No license shall be issued under this title except in aid of an executed or proposed marketing agreement or appendix thereto. No license issued under such clause (3) shall be applicable to any person who sells agricultural commodities at retail in his capacity as such retailer. No license issued under this title shall be applicable to any producer in his capacity as a producer.
(B) Any license under any license issued pursuant to this title, or any officer, director, agent, or employee of such licensee, who violates any provision of such license (other than a provision calling for payment of a pro rata share of expenses) shall, on conviction, be fined not less than $50 or more than $500 for each such violation, and each day during which such violation continues shall be deemed a separate violation: Provided, however, That no person shall be convicted under this title because of any violation (1) of any license or (2) of any obligation imposed in connection therewith, if such violation occurs between the date upon which such person files with the Secretary a petition, with respect to such license or obligation, as provided for in this subsection, and five days after the Secretary enters an order thereon.
(C) Any licensee may file a written petition with the Secretary of Agriculture stating that any provision of any such license or any obligation imposed in connection therewith is not in accordance with law. He shall thereupon be given an opportunity for a hearing upon such petition, in accordance with regulations made by the Secretary of Agriculture with the approval of the President. After such hearing, the Secretary shall make an order which shall be final, if in accordance with law. The District Court of the United States (including the Supreme Court of the District of Columbia)
n any district in which such licensee is an inhabitant or has his principal place of business is hereby vested with jurisdiction in equity to review such order, provided a bill in equity for that purpose be filed within twenty days from the date of the entry of such order. Service of process in such proceedings may be had upon the Secretary by delivering to him a copy of the bill of complaint. If the court determines that such order is not in accordance with law, it shall remand such proceedings to the Secretary with directions either (1) to enter such order as the court shall determine to be in accordance with law, or (2) to take such further proceedings as, in its opinion, the law requires. Nothing contained in this subsection shall be construed to prevent, hinder, or delay the United States or the Secretary of Agriculture from pursuing the remedies provided for in section 8a (6) of this title. Any proceedings brought pursuant to section 8a (6) of this title (except where brought by way of counterclaim in proceedings instituted pursuant to this subsection) shall abate whenever a final decree has been rendered in proceedings between the same parties and covering the same subject matter instituted pursuant to this subsection.
(4) To require any licensee under this section to furnish such reports as to quantities of agricultural commodities or products thereof bought and sold and the prices thereof, and as to trade practices and charges, and to keep such systems of accounts, as may be necessary for the purpose of part 2 of this title.
(4a) (1) All parties to any marketing agreement, and all licensees subject to a license, shall severally, from time to time, upon the request of the Secretary, furnish him with such information as he finds to be necessary to enable him to ascertain and determine the extent to which such agreement or license has been carried out or has effectuated the declared policy of this title, and with such information as he finds to be necessary to determine whether or not there has been any abuse of the privilege of exemptions from the antitrust laws. Such information shall be furnished in accord. ance with forms of reports to be prescribed by the Secretary. For the purpose of ascertaining the correctness of any report made to the Secretary pursuant to this subsection, or for the purpose of obtaining the information required in any such report where it has been requested and has not been furnished, the Secretary is hereby authorized to examine such books, papers, records, accounts, correspondence, contracts, documents, or memoranda, as he deems relevant and' which are within the control (1) of any such party to such marketing agreement, or any such licensee, from whom such report was requested or (2) of any person having, either directly or indirectly, actual or legal control of or over such party or such licensee or (3) of any subsidiary of any such party, licensee, or person.
(2) Notwithstanding the provisions of section 7, all information furnished to or acquired by the Secretary of Agriculture pursuant to this subsection shall be kept confidential by all officers and employees of the Department of Agriculture and only such information 80 furnished or acquired as the Secretary deems relevant shall be disclosed by them and then only in a suit or administrative hearing brought at the direction, or upon the request, of the Secretary of Agriculture, or to which he is a party, and involving the marketing agreement or license with reference to which the information so to be disclosed was furnished or acquired. Nothing in this subsection shall be deemed to prohibit (A) the issuance of general statements based upon the reports of a number of parties to a marketing agreement or of licensees, which statements do not identify the information furnished by any person, or (B) the publication by direction of the Secretary, of the name of any person violating any marketing agreement or any license, together with a statement of the particular provisions of the marketing agreement or license violated by such person. Any such officer or employee violating the provisions of this subsection shall upon conviction be subject to a fine of not more than $1,000 or to imprisonment for not more than one year, or to both, and shall be removed from office.
(5) No person engaged in the storage in a public warehouse of any basic agricultural commodity in the current of interstate or foreign commerce, shall deliver any such commodity upon which a warehouse receipt has been issued and is outstanding, without prior surrender and cancellation of such warehouse receipt. Any person violating any of the provisions of this subsection shall, upon conviction, be punished by a fine of not more than $5,000, or by imprisonment for not more than two years, or both. The Secretary of Agriculture may revoke any license issued under subsection (3) of this section, if he finds, after due notice and opportunity for hearing, that the licensee has violated the provisions of this subsection.
(6) The Secretary of Agriculture shall, whenever he determines that any license, or any provision thereof, obstructs and/or does not tend to effectuate the declared policy of this title, terminate, or suspend the operation of such license, or such provision thereof. The Secretary shall terminate any marketing agreement or license, at the end of the then current marketing period for such commodity as specified in such marketing agreement or license whenever he finds that such termination is javored by a majority of the producers who, during a representative period determined by the Secretary, have been engaged in the production for market of the commodity specified in such marketing agreement or license, provided that such majority have during such representative period produced for market more than 50 per centum of the volume of such commodity produced for market during such period, but such termination shall be effective only if announced on or before such date (prior to the end of the then current marketing period) as may be specified in such marketing agreement or license. (?). In connection with the making of any marketing agreement or the issuance of any license, if the Secretary finds and proclaims that, as to any commodity specified in such marketing agreement or license, the purchasing power during the base period 8pecified for such commodity in section 2 of this title cannot be satisfactorily determined from available statistics of the Department of Agriculture, the base period, for the purposes of such marketing agreement or license, shall be the post-war period, August 1919-July 1929, or all that portion thereof for which the Secretary finds and proclaims that the purchasing power of such commodity can be satisfactorily determined from available statistics of the Department of Agriculture.
(Sec. 8a) (7) Upon the request of the Secretary of Agriculture, it shall be the duty of the several district attorneys of the United States, in their respective districts, under the directions of the Attorney General, to institute proceedings to enforce the remedies and to collect the forfeitures provided for in, or pursuant to, this title. Whenever the Secretary, or such officer or employee of the Department as he may designate for the purpose, has reason to believe that any licensee has violated, or is violating, the provisions of any license heretofore or hereafter issued pursuant to this title, the Secretary shall have power to institute an investigation and, after due notice to such licensee, to conduct a hearing in order to determine the facts for the purpose of referring the matter to the Attorney General for appropriate action.
Sec. 9. (a) To obtain revenue for extraordinary expenses incurred by reason of the national economic emergency, there shall be levied processing taxes as hereinafter provided. When the Secretary of Agriculture determines that rental or benefit payments or payments for expansion of domestic or foreign markets, or both, are to be made with respect to any basic agricultural commodity, he shall proclaim such determination, and a processing tax shall be in effect with respect to such commodity from the beginning of the marketing year therefor next following the date of such proclamation; except that (1) in the case of sugar beets and sugarcane, the Secretary of Agriculture shall, on or before the thirtieth day after the adoption of this amendment, proclaim that rental or benefit payments with respect to said commodities are to be made, and the processing tax shall be in effect on and after the thirtieth day after the date of the adoption of this amendment, and (2) in the case of rice, the Secretary of Agriculture shall, before April 1, 1935, proclaim that rental or benefit payments are to be made with respect thereto, and the processing tax shall be in effect on and after April 1, 1935. In the case of sugar beets and sugarcane, the calendar year shall be considered to be the marketing year and for the year 1934 the marketing year shall begin January 1, 1934.
In the case of rice, the period from August 1 to July 31, both inclusive, shall be considered to be the marketing year. The processing tax shall be levied, assessed, and collected upon the first domestic processing of the commodity, whether of domestic production or imported, and shall be paid by the processor. The rate of tax shall conform to the requirements of subsection (b). Such rate shall be determined by the Secretary of Agriculture as of the date the tax first takes effect, and the rate so determined shall, at such intervals as the Secretary finds necessary to effectuate the declared policy, be adjusted by him to conform to such requirements. The processing tax shall terminate at the end of the marketing year current at the time the Secretary proclaims that rental or benefit payments, or payments for expansion of domestic or foreign markets, or (if paymenis jor both such purposes are in effect) both such payments, are to be discontinued with respect to such commodity. The marketing year for each commodity shall be ascertained and prescribed by regulations of the Secretary of Agriculture: Provided, That upon any article upon which a manufacturers' sales tax is levied under the authority of the Revenue Act of 1932 and which manufacturers' sales tax is computed on the basis of weight, such manufacturers' sales tax shall be computed on the basis of the weight of said finished article less the weight of the processed cotton contained therein on which a processing tax has been paid.
(b) The processing tax shall be at such rate as equals the difference between the current average farm price for the commodity and the fair exchange value of the commodity, plus such percentage of such difference, not to exceed 20 per centum, as the Secretary of Agriculture may determine will result in the collection, in any marketing year with respect to which such rate of tax may be in effect pursuant