Under existing law, the Legislature finds and declares that the agricultural and seafood industries are vitally important elements of the state's economy. Existing law provides for various commissions and councils to promote the marketing and production of agricultural or seafood commodities.
This bill would create the California Agave Commission in the state government with a prescribed membership, and would specify the powers, duties, and responsibilities of the commission's board of directors. The bill would authorize the commission's board of directors to, among other things, conduct research for specified purposes. The bill would authorize the commission to levy an annual assessment on growers and processors, as defined, and would authorize the commission to expend revenues from those assessments and all other moneys received by the commission, including from penalties for failing to pay the assessment and the civil penalties described below, for purposes of implementing the bill, thereby making an appropriation.
The bill would provide that the commission would not be established, and these provisions would not be implemented, except as necessary to conduct an election, until the growers and processors of agave vote in favor of establishing the commission, as prescribed. The bill would also provide for the suspension of the operation of the commission and for concluding the operation of the commission under certain circumstances. The bill would authorize the commission to levy a civil penalty, as specified, on a person for willfully rendering or furnishing false reports, secreting, destroying, or altering records, failing to render or furnish a report, or failing or refusing to furnish to the commission information concerning the name and address of persons from whom agave is received and the quantity received. The bill would authorize the commission to bring certain civil actions to enforce the bill's provisions.
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.