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H.R. 3243 (ih) To authorize the Administrator of the Environmental Protection Agency ...
108th CONGRESS 1st Session H. R. 3242 To ensure an abundant and affordable supply of highly nutritious fruits, vegetables, and other specialty crops for American consumers and international markets by enhancing the competitiveness of United States-grown specialty crops, and for other purposes. _______________________________________________________________________ IN THE HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES October 2, 2003 Mr. Ose (for himself, Mr. Dooley of California, Mr. Acevedo-Vila, Mr. English, Mr. Filner, Mrs. Kelly, Mr. Kolbe, Mr. Larsen of Washington, Mr. McHugh, Mr. Nunes, Mr. Radanovich, Mr. Scott of Georgia, Mr. Thompson of California, Mr. Gallegly, Mr. Cardoza, Mr. DeFazio, Mr. Kingston, Mr. Wu, Mr. Hinojosa, and Mr. Farr) introduced the following bill; which was referred to the Committee on Agriculture, and in addition to the Committee on Ways and Means, for a period to be subsequently determined by the Speaker, in each case for consideration of such provisions as fall within the jurisdiction of the committee concerned _______________________________________________________________________ A BILL To ensure an abundant and affordable supply of highly nutritious fruits, vegetables, and other specialty crops for American consumers and international markets by enhancing the competitiveness of United States-grown specialty crops, and for other purposes. Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives of the United States of America in Congress assembled, SECTION 1. SHORT TITLE; TABLE OF CONTENTS. (a) Short Title.--This Act may be cited as the ``Specialty Crops Competitiveness Act of 2003''. (b) Table of Contents.--The table of contents for this Act is as follows: Sec. 1. Short title; table of contents. Sec. 2. Findings and purpose. Sec. 3. Definitions. TITLE I--SPECIALTY CROP GRANTS AND LOANS Sec. 101. Grants to States to enhance competitiveness of specialty crops. Sec. 102. Department of Agriculture operating loans. TITLE II--MARKETING Sec. 201. Implementation of food safety programs under marketing orders. Sec. 202. School garden grant pilot program. Sec. 203. Increase in maximum amount of assistance authorized under tree assistance program. Sec. 204. Hunts Point Terminal Market, Bronx, New York. Sec. 205. Maintenance of Fredericksburg Inspection Training Center. TITLE III--INTERNATIONAL TRADE Sec. 301. Position in Office of the United States Trade Representative for specialty crops. Sec. 302. Foreign market access study and strategy plan. Sec. 303. Technical assistance for specialty crops. Sec. 304. Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service. Sec. 305. Supplier credit guarantee program. Sec. 306. Foreign development assistance. Sec. 307. Protection of intellectual property rights in plants and plant-derived material. TITLE IV--SPECIALTY CROP RESEARCH Sec. 401. Transfer of administration and funding of Office of Pest Management Policy. Sec. 402. Additional research initiatives. Sec. 403. National specialty crops development initiative grant program. TITLE V--INVASIVE PEST AND DISEASE RESPONSE Sec. 501. Emergency response fund. Sec. 502. Independent scientific advice for Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service. Sec. 503. Food safety initiatives. TITLE VI--CONSERVATION Sec. 601. Elimination of limitation on adjusted gross income from eligibility requirements for environmental quality incentives program. Sec. 602. Sustainability practices. SEC. 2. FINDINGS AND PURPOSE. (a) Findings.--Congress finds the following: (1) A secure domestic food supply is a national security imperative for the United States. (2) A competitive specialty crop industry in the United States is necessary for the production of an abundant, affordable supply of highly nutritious fruits, vegetables, and other specialty crops, which are vital to the health and well- being of all Americans. (3) Increased consumption of specialty crops will provide tremendous health and economic benefits to both consumers and specialty crop growers. (4) Specialty crop growers believe that there are numerous areas of Federal agriculture policy that could be improved to promote increased consumption of specialty crops and increase the competitiveness of producers in the efficient production of affordable specialty crops in the United States. (5) As the globalization of markets continues, it is becoming increasingly difficult for United States producers to compete against heavily subsidized foreign producers in both the domestic and foreign markets. (6) United States specialty crop producers also continue to face serious tariff and non-tariff trade barriers in many export markets. (b) Purpose.--It is the purpose of this Act to make necessary changes in Federal agriculture policy to accomplish the goals of increasing fruit, vegetable, and nut consumption and improving the competitiveness of United States specialty crop producers. SEC. 3. DEFINITIONS. In this Act: (1) The term ``specialty crop'' means all agricultural crops, except wheat, feed grains, oilseeds, cotton, rice, peanuts, sugar, and tobacco. (2) The term ``Secretary'' means the Secretary of Agriculture. (3) The term ``State'' means the several States, the District of Columbia, the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico, the Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands, American Samoa, Guam, the Virgin Islands, and any other territory or possession of the United States. (4) The term ``State department of agriculture'' means the agency, commission, or department of a State government responsible for protecting and promoting agriculture within the State. TITLE I--SPECIALTY CROP GRANTS AND LOANS SEC. 101. GRANTS TO STATES TO ENHANCE COMPETITIVENESS OF SPECIALTY CROPS. (a) Availability and Purpose of Grants.--For each of the Federal fiscal years 2004 through 2008, the Secretary of Agriculture shall make a grant under this section to each State that submits an annual application, at such time and in such form as the Secretary prescribes, requesting the grant for that fiscal year. The grant funds shall be used by the State department of agriculture solely to enhance the competitiveness of specialty crops. Grant funds provided under this section shall supplement the expenditure of State funds in support of specialty crops and specialty crop producers, and shall not replace State funds. (b) Grants Based on Value of Production.--Subject to subsection (c), the amount of the grant for a fiscal year to a State under this section shall bear the same ratio to the total amount made available under subsection (f) for that year as the value of specialty crop production in the State during the preceding calendar year bears to the value of specialty crop production during that calendar year in all those States submitting applications for a grant for that fiscal year. (c) Minimum Grant Amount.--At a minimum, each eligible State shall receive $2,000,000 per year as a grant under this section. (d) Grant Expenditure Priorities.--As a condition on the receipt of a grant under this section, the State department of agriculture shall conduct at least one public hearing, or provide some other method for public comment, to obtain the advice and opinion of specialty crop producers in the State regarding the disposition of the grant funds. The Secretary shall ensure that State agriculture authorities take such advice and opinions into account in making their decisions on the expenditure of the grant funds. (e) Use of Commodity Credit Corporation.--The Secretary shall use $470,000,000 of funds of the Commodity Credit Corporation during each of the fiscal years 2004 through 2008. SEC. 102. DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE OPERATING LOANS. (a) Increase in Limits on Operating Loans for Producers of Fruits or Vegetables.--Section 313(a)(1) of the Consolidated Farm and Rural Development Act (7 U.S.C. 1943(a)(1)) is amended-- (1) by inserting ``or, if the borrower is a producer of a specialty crop, $500,000'' after ``$200,000''; and (2) by inserting ``or, if the borrower is a producer of a specialty crop, $1,500,000'' after ``$700,000''. TITLE II--MARKETING SEC. 201. IMPLEMENTATION OF FOOD SAFETY PROGRAMS UNDER MARKETING ORDERS. Section 8c(7) of the Agricultural Adjustment Act (7 U.S.C. 608c(7)), reenacted with amendments by the Agricultural Marketing Agreement Act of 1937, is amended-- (1) by redesignating subparagraphs (C) and (D) as subparagraph (D) and (E), respectively; and (2) by inserting after subparagraph (B) the following new subparagraph (C): ``(C) In the case of an order relating to a specialty crop, authorizing the implementation of food safety programs, such as good agricultural and manufacturing practices, ISO 9000 standards, and Hazard Analysis of Critical Control Points programs, designed to enhance the safety of the specialty crop and products derived from specialty crops.''. SEC. 202. SCHOOL GARDEN GRANT PILOT PROGRAM. (a) Grants Authorized.--The Secretary of Agriculture may make grants to State or local educational agencies and nonprofit organizations for the purpose of supporting school garden programs that allow children to learn about the importance of specialty crops to a healthy diet. The Secretary shall initially target the grants to substantial urban centers. (b) Consultation.--The Secretary shall develop and carry out the grant program in consultation with the State department of agriculture of each State and other appropriate institutions in which the grant program is conducted. (c) Authorization of Appropriations.--There is authorized to be appropriated to the Secretary $15,000,000 to make grants under this section. SEC. 203. INCREASE IN MAXIMUM AMOUNT OF ASSISTANCE AUTHORIZED UNDER TREE ASSISTANCE PROGRAM. Section 10204(a) of the Farm Security and Rural Investment Act of 2002 (7 U.S.C. 8204(a)) is amended by striking ``$75,000'' and inserting ``$150,000''. SEC. 204. HUNTS POINT TERMINAL MARKET, BRONX, NEW YORK. The Secretary of Agriculture shall use up to $20,000,000 of the funds of the Commodity Credit Corporation to provide restitution to licensed specialty crop shippers for economic losses incurred as a result of the preparation of false inspection certificates by graders of the Department of Agriculture at Hunts Point Terminal Market, Bronx, New York. SEC. 205. MAINTENANCE OF FREDERICKSBURG INSPECTION TRAINING CENTER. There is authorized to be appropriated to the Secretary of Agriculture each fiscal year $1,500,000 specifically for the maintenance of the Agricultural Marketing Service inspection training center in Fredericksburg, Virginia. TITLE III--INTERNATIONAL TRADE SEC. 301. POSITION IN OFFICE OF THE UNITED STATES TRADE REPRESENTATIVE FOR SPECIALTY CROPS. The United States Trade Representative shall establish at least one position in the Office of the United States Trade Representative that is responsible solely for trade matters related to specialty crops. SEC. 302. FOREIGN MARKET ACCESS STUDY AND STRATEGY PLAN. (a) Study.--The General Accounting Office shall study-- (1) the extent to which United States specialty crops have or have not benefited from any reductions of foreign trade barriers, as provided for in the Uruguay Round Agreements; and (2) the reasons why United States specialty crops have or have not benefited from such trade-barrier reductions. (b) Strategy Plan.--The Secretary shall prepare a foreign market access strategy plan, on the basis of the foreign market access study, to increase exports of specialty crops, including an assessment of the foreign trade barriers that are incompatible with the Uruguay Round Agreements and a strategy for removing those barriers. (c) Report.--Not later than one year after the date of the enactment of this Act, the General Accounting Office shall submit to Congress a report that contains the results of the study and the Secretary shall submit to Congress the plan. (d) Definition.--For purposes of this section, ``Uruguay Round Agreements'' includes any agreement referred to in section 101(d) of the Uruguay Round Agreements Act (19 U.S.C. 3511(d)). SEC. 303. TECHNICAL ASSISTANCE FOR SPECIALTY CROPS. Section 3205(d) of the Farm Security and Rural Investment Act of 2002 (Public Law 107-171; 7 U.S.C. 5680(d)) is amended-- (1) by striking ``$2,000,000'' and inserting ``$10,000,000''; and (2) by striking ``2002'' and inserting ``2004''. SEC. 304. ANIMAL AND PLANT HEALTH INSPECTION SERVICE. The Secretary of Agriculture shall establish, in the Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service of the Department of Agriculture, the Sanitary and Phytosanitary Export Petition Division for the sole purpose of processing petitions that are submitted to that service for
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