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(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.
TITLE I-COTTON OPTION CONTRACTS
SEC. 3. The Federal Farm Board and all departments and other agencies of the Government are hereby directed
(a) To sell to the Secretary of Agriculture at such price as may be agreed upon all cotton now owned by them.
(b) To take such action and to make such settlements as are necessary in order to acquire full legal title to all cotton on which money has been loaned or advanced by any department or agency of the United States or held as collateral for loans or advances and to make final settlement of such loans and advances upon such terms as may be deemed advisable, in the judgment of the Secretary and the department or agency involved; and to sell this cotton also to the Secretary in the same manner as is provided in the preceding paragraph hereof.
The Secretary of Agriculture is hereby authorized to purchase the cotton specified in paragraphs (a) and (b).
SEC. 4. The Secretary of Agriculture shall have authority to borrow money upon all cotton in his possession or control and deposit as collateral for such loans the warehouse receipts for such cotton.
SEC. 5. The Reconstruction Finance Corporation is hereby authorized and directed to advance money and to make loans to the Secretary of Agriculture to acquire such cotton and to pay the carrying costs thereon, in such amounts and upon such terms as may be agreed upon by the Secretary and the Reconstruction Finance Corporation, with such warehouse receipts as collateral security.
SEC. 6. (a) The Secretary of Agriculture is hereby authorized to enter into contracts with the producers of cotton to sell to any such producer an amount of cotton equivalent in amount to the amount of reduction in production of cotton by such producer below the amount produced by him in the preceding crop year, in all cases where such producer agrees in writing to reduce the amount of cotton produced by him in 1933, below his production in the previous year, by not less than 30 per cent, without increase in commercial fertilization per acre.
(b) To any such producer so agreeing to reduce production the Secretary of Agriculture shall deliver a nontransferable-option contract agreeing to sell to said producer an amount, equivalent to the amount of his agreed reduction, of the cotton in the possession and control of the Secretary.
(c) The producer is to have the option to buy said cotton at the average price paid by the Secretary for the cotton procured under section 3, and is to have the right at any time up to January 1, 1934, to exercise his option, upon proof that he has complied with his contract and with all the rules and regulations of the Secretary of Agriculture with respect thereto, by taking said cotton upon payment by him of his option price and all actual carrying charges on such cotton; or the Secretary may sell such cotton for the account of such producer, paying him the excess of the market price at the date of sale over the average price above referred to after deducting all actual and necessary carrying charges : Provided, That in no event shall the producer be held responsible or liable for financial loss incurred in the holding of such cotton or on account of the carrying charges therein: Provided further, That such agreement to curtail cotton production shall contain a further provision that such cotton producer shall not use the land taken out of cotton production for the production for sale, directly or indirectly, of any other nationally produced agricultural commodity or product.
SEC. 7. The Secretary shall sell the cotton held by him at his discretion, but subject to the foregoing provisions: Provided, That he shall dispose of all cotton held by him by March 1, 1935: Provided further, That he is authorized to sell unlimited amounts at any time a price equivalent to not less than 10 cents, basis middling, seven-eighths inch staple, at the ports can be procured.
TITLE II-AGRICULTURAL ADJUSTMENT PROVISIONS
SEC. 8. In order to effectuate the declared policy, the Secretary of Agriculture shall have power
(1) To provide for reduction in the acreage or reduction 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 in connection therewith in such amounts as the Secretary deems fair and reasonable, to be paid out of any moneys available for such payments.
(2) To enter into marketing agreements with processors, associations of producers, and other agencies engaged in the handling, in the current of interstate or foreign commerce of any agricultural commodity or product thereof, after due notice and opportunity for hearing to interested parties. 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 and shall bear interest at a rate not in excess of 3 per centum per annum.
(3) To issue licenses permitting processors, associations of producers, and other agencies to engage in the handling, in the current of interstate or foreign commerce, of any basic agricultural commodity or product thereof, or any competing agricultural 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 agency 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.
(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 this act.
SEC. 9. (a) To raise revenues for the payment of extraordinary expenditures incurred by reason of the national economic emergency there shall be levied, assessed, and collected, during the marketing period (as ascertained and prescribed by regulations of the Secretary of Agriculture) for any basic agricultural commodity with respect to which rental or benefit payments are made under this act, in connection with reductions in the acreage of the crop, or in the production, for market during such period, a tax to be paid by the processor on the first domestic processing of the commodity, whether of domestic production or imported. Such tax shall, except as hereinafter provided, equal the difference between the current average farm price for the commodity, and the fair exchange value of the commodity. Such value for any commodity shall be the price therefor which will give the commodity the same purchasing power, with respect to articles farmers buy, as during the pre-war period, August 1909– July 1914. The current average farm price and the fair exchange value shall be ascertained by the Secretary of Agriculture from available statistics of the Department of Agriculture.
(b) If the Secretary of Agriculture, after investigation and due notice and opportunity for hearing to interested parties, finds at any time that the imposition of the tax at the rate hereinbefore provided has resulted or is likely to result in a substantial reduction in the quantity of the commodity or products thereof domestically consumed, he shall fix such lower rate as is necessary to maintain or restore such domestic consumption. Such rate may be revised from time to time pursuant to further findings under this subsection. In making any such finding the Secretary shall give due consideration to the following factors among others :
(1) Reports as to wage scales, employment, and unemployment in urban regions.
(2) Changes in the consumption of the agricultural commodity and of other commodities.
(3) Evidence derived from statistical studies of supply and demand for previous periods, which indicate the change in consumption of the commodity which would normally occur in consequence of a particular change in the cost to processors or consumers.
(4) Other relevant data as to changes in the cost of living of consumers, consumers' buying habits, and current and prospective conditions in industry pertinent to determining the probable effective demand for the commodity.
SEO. 10. (a) The Secretary of Agriculture may appoint such officers and employees, subject to the provisions of the Classification Act of 1923 and acts amendatory thereof, and su experts as are necessary to execute the functions vested in him by this act; and the Secretary may make such appointments without regard to the civil service laws or regulations: Provided, That no salary in excess of $10,000 per annum shall be paid to any officer, employee, or expert of the Emergency Agricultural Adjustment Administration, which the Secretary shall establish in the Department of Agriculture for the administration of the functions vested in him by this act.
(b) The Secretary of Agriculture is authorized to establish, for the more effective administration of the functions vested in him by this act, State and local committees, or associations of producers, and to permit cooperative associations of producers, when in his judgment they are qualified to do so, to act as agents of their members and patrons in connection with the distribution of rental or benefit payments.
(c) The Secretary of Agriculture is authorized, with the approval of the President, to make such regulations with the force and effect of law as may be necessary to carry out the powers vested in him by this act. Any violation of any regulation shall be subject to such penalty, not in excess of $100, as may be provided therein.
(a). The Secretary of the Treasury is authorized to make such regulations as may be necessary to carry out the powers vested in him by this act, including regulations, with the force and effect of law establishing conversion factors for any commodity and article processed therefrom to determine the amount of tax imposed with respect thereto, and defining processing with respect to any commodity.
(e) The action of any officer, employee, or agent in determining the amount of and in making any rental or benefit payment shall not be subject to review by any officer of the Government other than the Secretary of Agriculture or Secretary of the Treasury.
(f) The provisions of this act shall be applicable to the United States and its possessions, except the Philippine Islands, the Virgin Islands, American Samoa, and the island of Guam.
(g) No person shall, while acting in any official capacity in the administration of this act, speculate, directly or indirectly, in any agricultural commodity or product thereof, to which this act applies, or in contracts relating thereto, or in the stock or membership interests of any association or corporation engaged in handling, processing, or disposing of any such commodity or product. Any person violating this subsection shall upon conviction thereof be fined not more than $10,000 or imprisoned not more than two years, or both.
SEC. 11. As used in this act, the term “basic agricultural commodity wheat, cotton, corn, hogs, cattle, sheep, rice, tobacco, and milk and its products, and any regional or market classification, type, or grade thereof; but the Secretary of Agriculture shall exclude from the operation of the provisions of this act during any period any such commodity or classification, type, or grade thereof if he finds, upon investigation at any time and after due notice and opportunity for hearing to interested parties, that the conditions of production, marketing, and consumption are such that during such period this act cannot be effectively administered to the end of effectuating the declared policy with respect to such commodity or classification, type, or grade thereof.
SEC. 12. (a) The proceeds derived from taxes imposed under this act, or so much thereof as may be necessary, are hereby appropriated to be available to the Secretary of Agriculture for rental and benefit payments and administrative expenses, including refunds under this act, personal services in the District of Columbia and elsewhere, contract stenographic reporting services, and printing and paper in addition to allotments under existing law.
(b) The Secretary of Agriculture and the Secretary of the Treasury shall jointly estimate from time to time the amounts currently required for such payments and expenses, and the Secretary of the Treasury shall advance to the Secretary of Agriculture the amounts so estimated. The amount of such advance shall be deducted from such funds as subsequently become available under subsection (a).
(c) The Secretary of Agriculture shall transfer to the Treasury Department, and is authorized to transfer to other agencies, out of funds available under this section, such sums as are required to pay administrative expenses incurred and refunds made by such department or agencies in the administration of this act.
TERMINATION OF ACT
SEO. 13. This act shall cease to be in effect whenever the President finds and proclaims that the national economic emergency in relation to agriculture has been ended ; and pending such time the President shall by proclamation terminate with respect to any basic agricultural commodity such provisions of this act as he finds are not requisite to carrying out the declared policy with respect to such commodity. The Secretary of Agriculture shall make such investigations and reports thereon to the President as may be necessary to aid him in executing this section.
SEPARABILITY OF PROVISIONS
SEC. 14. If any provision of this act is declared unconstitutional, or the appli. cability thereof to any person, circumstance, or commodity is held invalid the validity of the remainder of this act and the applicability thereof to other persons, circumstances, or commodities shall not be affected thereby.
SUPPLEMENTARY REVENUE PROVISIONS
EXEMPTIONS AND COMPENSATING TAXES
SEC. 15. (a) If the Secretary of Agriculture finds, upon investigation at any time and after due notice and opportunity for hearing to interested parties, that any class of products of any commodity is of such low value compared with the quantity of the commodity used for their manufacture that the impo. sition of the processing tax would prevent in whole or in large part the use of the commodity in the manufacture of such products and thereby substantially reduce consumption and increase the surplus of the commodity, then the Secretary of Agriculture shall so certify to the Secretary of the Treasury, and the Secretary of the Treasury shall abate or refund any processing tax assessed or paid after the date of such certification with respect tớ such amount of the commodity as is used in the manufacture of such products.
(b) No tax shall be required to be paid on the processing of any commodity by the producer thereof on his own premises for consumption by his own family, employees, or household; and the Secretary of Agriculture is authorized by regulations, to exempt producers from the payment of the processing tax with respect to hogs, cattle, sheep, or milk and its products, in cases where the producer's sales of the products resulting from the processing of the commodity do not exceed $100 per annum.
(c) Any person delivering any product to any organization for charitable distribution or use shall, if such product or the commodity from which processed, is under this Act subject to tax, be entitled to a refund of the amount of any tax paid under this Act with respect to such product so delivered.
(d) The Secretary of Agriculture shall ascertain from time to time whether the payment of the processing tax upon any basic agricultural commodity is causing or will cause to the processors thereof disadvantages in competition from competing agricultural commodities by reason of excessive shifts in consumption between such commodities or products thereof. If the Secretary of Agriculture finds, after investigation and due notice and opportunity for hearing to interested parties, that such disadvantages in competition exist, or will exist, he shall proclaim such finding. The Secretary shall specify in this proclamation the competing agricultural commodity and the compensating rate of tax on the processing thereof necessary to prevent such disadvantages in competition. Thereafter there shall be levied, assessed, and collected upon the first domestic processing of such competing agricultural commodity a tax, to be paid by the processor, at the rate specified, until such rate is altered pursuant to a further finding under this section, or the tax or rate thereof on the basic agricultural commodity is altered or terminated. In no case shall the tax imposed upon such competing agricultural commodity exceed that imposed per like unit upon the basic agricultural commodity. The term “ competing agricultural commodity " shall include, among others, rayon, silk, linen, and oleomargarine, and any basic agricultural commodity as to which a tax is not in effect under section 9.
(e) During any period for which a processing tax is in effect with respect to any commodity there shall be levied, assessed, collected, and paid upon any article processed or manufactured wholly or in chief value from such commodity and imported into the United States or any possession thereof to which this act applies, from any foreign country or from any possession of the United States to which this act does not apply, a compensating tax equal to the amount of the processing tax in effect with respect to domestic processing at the time of importation. Such tax shall be paid prior to the release of the article from customs custody or control.
SEC. 16. (a) Upon the sale or other disposition of any article processed wholly or in chief value from any commodity with respect to which a processing tax is to be levied, that on the date the tax first takes effect or wholly terminates with respect to the commodity, is held for sale or other disposition (including articles in transit) by any person other than a consumer or a person engaged solely in retail trade, there shall be made a tax adjustment as follows:
(1) Whenever the processing tax first takes effect, there shall be levied, assessed, and collected a tax to be paid by such person equivalent to the amount of the processing tax which would be payable with respect to the commodity from which processed if the processing had occurred on such date.
(2) Whenever the processing tax is wholly terminated, there shall be refunded to such person a sum if it has not been paid, the tax shall be abated) in an amount equivalent to the processing tax with respect to tne commodity from which processed.
(b) Notwithstanding the provisions of subsection (a), such subsection shall apply with respect to such portion of retail stocks on hand at the date the processing tax takes effect, as is not sold or otherwise disposed of for consump tion within one month after such date.
SEC. 17. (a) Upon the exportation to any foreign country (including the Philippine Islands, the Virgin Islands, American Samoa, and the island of Guam) of any product with respect to which a tax has been paid under this act, or of any product processed wholly or in chief value from a commodity with respect to which a tax has been paid under this act, the exporter thereof shall be entitled at the time of exportation to a refund of the amount of such tax.
(b) Upon the giving of bond satisfactory to the Secretary of the Treasury for the faithful observance of the provisions of this act requiring the payment of taxes, any person shall be entitled, without payment of the tax, to process for such exportation any commodity with respect to which a tax is imposed by this act, or to hold for such exportation any article processed wholly or in chief value therefrom.