[USC02] 7 USC CHAPTER 37, SUBCHAPTER IV: GENERAL PROVISIONS
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7 USC CHAPTER 37, SUBCHAPTER IV: GENERAL PROVISIONS
From Title 7—AGRICULTURECHAPTER 37—SEEDS

SUBCHAPTER IV—GENERAL PROVISIONS

§1591. Delegation of duties

Any duties devolving upon the Secretary of Agriculture by virtue of the provisions of this chapter may with like force and effect be executed by such officer or officers, agent or agents, of the Department of Agriculture as the Secretary may designate for the purpose.

(Aug. 9, 1939, ch. 615, title IV, §401, 53 Stat. 1285.)

Effective Date

See section 1610 of this title.

§1592. Rules and regulations

(a) The Secretary of Agriculture shall make such rules and regulations as he may deem necessary for the effective enforcement of this chapter, except as otherwise provided in this section.

(b) The Secretary of the Treasury and the Secretary of Agriculture shall make, jointly or severally, such rules and regulations as they may deem necessary for the effective enforcement of subchapter III of this chapter.

(c) Prior to the promulgation of any rule or regulation under this chapter, due notice shall be given by publication in the Federal Register of intention to promulgate and the time and place of a public hearing to be held with reference thereto, and no rule or regulation may be promulgated until after such hearing. Any rule or regulation shall become effective on the date fixed in the promulgation, which date shall be not less than thirty days after publication in the Federal Register and may be amended or revoked in the manner provided for its promulgation.

(Aug. 9, 1939, ch. 615, title IV, §402, 53 Stat. 1285.)

Effective Date

See section 1610 of this title.

§1593. Standards, tests, tolerances

(a) The samplings, analyses, tests, or examinations of seeds made in connection with the administration of this chapter shall be made by methods set forth by rules and regulations prescribed under section 1592 of this title.

(b) The Secretary of Agriculture is authorized and directed to make and promulgate by rules and regulations, reasonable tolerances as to the percentages and rates of occurrence required to be stated or required by this chapter.

(c) For the purpose of section 1571(b) of this title, the Secretary of Agriculture is authorized and directed to investigate, determine, establish, and promulgate from time to time such reasonable standards of germination for each kind of vegetable seed as will in his judgment best protect crop production.

(Aug. 9, 1939, ch. 615, title IV, §403, 53 Stat. 1285.)

Effective Date

See section 1610 of this title.

§1593a. Seed variety information and survey

(a) Information

(1) In general

Grain submitted for public testing shall be evaluated for selected specific agronomic performance characteristics and intrinsic end-use performance characteristics, as determined by the Secretary, with the results of the evaluations made available to the Secretary.

(2) Dissemination of information

The Secretary shall disseminate varietal performance information obtained under paragraph (1) to plant breeders, producers, and end users.

(b) Survey

The Secretary shall periodically conduct, compile, and publish a survey of grain varieties commercially produced in the United States.

(c) Analysis of variety survey data

The Secretary shall analyze the variety surveys conducted under subsection (b) in conjunction with available applied research information on intrinsic quality characteristics of the varieties, to evaluate general intrinsic crop quality characteristics and trends in production related to intrinsic quality characteristics. This information shall be disseminated as required by subsection (a)(2).

(Pub. L. 101–624, title XX, §2013, Nov. 28, 1990, 104 Stat. 3933.)

Codification

Section was enacted as part of the Grain Quality Incentives Act of 1990, and also as part of the Food, Agriculture, Conservation, and Trade Act of 1990, and not as part of the Federal Seed Act which comprises this chapter.

§1594. Prohibition against alterations

No person shall detach, alter, deface, or destroy any label provided for in this chapter or the rules and regulations made and promulgated thereunder by the Secretary of Agriculture, or alter or substitute seed in a manner that may defeat the purpose of this chapter.

(Aug. 9, 1939, ch. 615, title IV, §404, 53 Stat. 1286.)

Effective Date

See section 1610 of this title.

§1595. Seizure

(a) Any seed sold, delivered for transportation in interstate commerce, or transported in interstate or foreign commerce in violation of any of the provisions of this chapter shall, at the time of such violation or at any time thereafter, be liable to be proceeded against on libel of information and condemned in any district court of the United States within the jurisdiction of which the seed is found.

(b) If seed is condemned by a decree of the court as being in violation of the provisions of this chapter, it may be disposed of by the court by—

(1) sale; or

(2) delivery to the owner thereof after he has appeared as claimant and paid the court costs and fees and storage and other proper expenses and executed and delivered a bond with good and sufficient sureties that such seed will not be sold or disposed of in any jurisdiction contrary to the provisions of this chapter and the rules and regulations made and promulgated thereunder, or the laws of such jurisdiction; or

(3) destruction.


(c) If such seed is disposed of by sale, the proceeds of the sale, less the court costs and fees and storage and other proper expenses, shall be paid into the Treasury as miscellaneous receipts, but such seed shall not be sold or disposed of in any jurisdiction contrary to the provisions of this chapter and the rules and regulations made and promulgated thereunder, or the laws of such jurisdiction.

(d) The proceedings in such libel cases shall conform, as nearly as may be, to the proceedings in admiralty, except that either party may demand trial by jury of any issue of fact joined in any such case; and such proceedings shall be at the suit of and in the name of the United States.

(Aug. 9, 1939, ch. 615, title IV, §405, 53 Stat. 1286.)

Effective Date

See section 1610 of this title

§1596. Penalties

(a) Any person who knowingly, or as a result either of gross negligence or of a failure to make a reasonable effort to inform himself of the pertinent facts, violates any provision of this chapter or the rules and regulations made and promulgated thereunder shall be deemed guilty of a misdemeanor and, upon conviction thereof, shall pay a fine of not more than $1,000, for the first offense, and upon conviction for each subsequent offense not more than $2,000.

(b) Any person who violates any provision of this chapter or the rules and regulations made and promulgated thereunder shall forfeit to the United States a sum, not less than $25 or more than $500, for each such violation, which forfeiture shall be recoverable in a civil suit brought in the name of the United States.

(Aug. 9, 1939, ch. 615, title IV, §406, 53 Stat. 1286; July 9, 1956, ch. 520, §1, 70 Stat. 508.)

Amendments

1956—Act July 9, 1956, designated existing provisions as subsec. (a), inserted "knowingly or as a result either of gross negligence or of a failure to make a reasonable effort to inform himself of the pertinent facts," and added subsec. (b).

Effective Date of 1956 Amendment

Act July 9, 1956, ch. 520, §4, 70 Stat. 508, provided that: "The amendments made by this Act [amending sections 1574, 1596, and 1602 of this title] shall be applicable only with respect to violations occurring after the enactment of this Act [July 9, 1956]."

Effective Date

See section 1610 of this title.

§1597. Agent's acts as binding principal

When construing and enforcing the provisions of this chapter, the act, omission, or failure of any officer, agent, or other person acting for or employed by any person, partnership, corporation, company, society, or association, shall in every case be also deemed to be the act, omission, or failure of such person, partnership, corporation, company, society, or association, as well as that of the person employed.

(Aug. 9, 1939, ch. 615, title IV, §407, 53 Stat. 1286.)

Effective Date

See section 1610 of this title.

§1598. Notice of intention to prosecute

Before any violation of this chapter is reported by the Secretary of Agriculture to any United States attorney for institution of a criminal proceeding, the person against whom such proceeding is contemplated shall be given appropriate notice and an opportunity to prevent 1 his views, either orally or in writing, with regard to such contemplated proceeding.

(Aug. 9, 1939, ch. 615, title IV, §408, 53 Stat. 1286.)

Effective Date

See section 1610 of this title.

1 So in original. Probably should be "present".

§1599. Cease and desist proceedings

(a) Hearing

Whenever the Secretary of Agriculture has reason to believe that any person has violated or is violating any of the provisions of this chapter or the rules and regulations made and promulgated thereunder, he shall cause a complaint in writing to be served upon the person, stating his charges in that respect, and requiring the person to attend and testify at a hearing at a time and place designated therein, at least thirty days after the service of such complaint; and at such time and place there shall be afforded the person a reasonable opportunity to be informed as to the evidence introduced against him (including the right of cross-examination), and to be heard in person or by counsel and through witnesses, under such rules and regulations as the Secretary of Agriculture may prescribe. At any time prior to the close of the hearing the Secretary of Agriculture may amend the complaint; but in case of any amendment adding new provisions the hearing shall, on the request of the person, be adjourned for a period not exceeding fifteen days.

(b) Report of Secretary of Agriculture

If, after such hearing, the Secretary of Agriculture finds that the person has violated or is violating any provisions of the chapter or rules and regulations covered by the charges, he shall make a report in writing in which he shall state his findings as to the facts, and shall issue and cause to be served on the person an order requiring such person to cease and desist from continuing such violation. The testimony taken at the hearing shall be reduced to writing and filed in the records of the Department of Agriculture.

(c) Amendment of report

Until the record in such hearing has been filed in a court of appeals as provided in section 1600 of this title, the Secretary of Agriculture at any time, upon such notice and in such manner as he deems proper, but only after reasonable opportunity to the person to be heard, may amend or set aside the report or order, in whole or in part.

(d) Service

Complaints, orders, and other processes of the Secretary of Agriculture under this section may be served by anyone duly authorized by the Secretary of Agriculture, either (1) by delivering a copy thereof to the person to be served, or to a member of the partnership to be served, or to the president, secretary, or other executive officer or a director of the corporation to be served; or (2) by leaving a copy thereof at the principal office or place of business of such person, partnership, or corporation; or (3) by mailing a copy thereof by registered mail or by certified mail addressed to such person, partnership, or corporation at his or its last known principal office or place of business. The verified return by the person so serving said complaint, order, or other process setting forth the manner of said order shall be proof of the same, and the return postoffice receipt for said complaint, order, or other process mailed by registered mail or by certified mail as aforesaid shall be proof of the service of the same.

(Aug. 9, 1939, ch. 615, title IV, §409, 53 Stat. 1287; June 25, 1948, ch. 646, §32(a), 62 Stat. 991; May 24, 1949, ch. 139, §127, 63 Stat. 107; Pub. L. 85–791, §24(a), Aug. 28, 1958, 72 Stat. 949; Pub. L. 86–507, §1(7), June 11, 1960, 74 Stat. 200.)

Amendments

1960—Subsec. (d). Pub. L. 86–507 substituted "mailing a copy thereof by registered mail or by certified mail" for "registering and mailing a copy thereof" and "mailed by registered mail or by certified mail" for "registered and mailed".

1958—Subsec. (c). Pub. L. 85–791 struck out "a transcript of" before "the record".

Change of Name

Act June 25, 1948, as amended by act May 24, 1949, substituted "court of appeals" for "circuit court of appeals" which appeared in subsec. (c) of this section.

Effective Date

See section 1610 of this title.

§1600. Appeal to court of appeals

An order made under section 1599 of this title shall be final and conclusive unless within thirty days after the service the person appeals to the court of appeals for the circuit in which such person resides or has his principal place of business by filing with the clerk of such court a written petition praying that the Secretary's order be set aside or modified in the manner stated in the petition, together with a bond in such sum as the court may determine, conditioned that such person will pay the costs of the proceedings if the court so directs.

The clerk of the court shall immediately cause a copy of the petition to be delivered to the Secretary, and the Secretary shall thereupon file in the court the record in such proceedings, as provided in section 2112 of title 28. If before such record is filed, the Secretary amends or sets aside his report or order, in whole or in part, the petitioner may amend the petition within such time as the court may determine, on notice to the Secretary.

At any time after such petition is filed the court, on application of the Secretary, may issue a temporary injunction restraining, to the extent it deems proper, the person and his officers, directors, agents, and employees from violating any of the provisions of the order pending the final determination of the appeal.

The evidence so taken or admitted and filed as aforesaid as a part of the record, shall be considered by the court as the evidence in the case.

The court may affirm, modify, or set aside the order of the Secretary.

If the court determines that the just and proper disposition of the case requires the taking of additional evidence, the court shall order the hearing to be reopened for the taking of such evidence, in such manner and upon such terms and conditions as the court may deem proper. The Secretary may modify his findings as to the facts, or make new findings, by reason of the additional evidence so taken, and he shall file such modified or new findings and his recommendations, if any, for the modification or setting aside of his order, with the return of such additional evidence.

If the court of appeals affirms or modifies the order of the Secretary, its decree shall operate as an injunction to restrain the person and his officers, directors, agents, and employees from violating the provisions of such order or such order as modified.

(Aug. 9, 1939, ch. 615, title IV, §410, 53 Stat. 1287; June 25, 1948, ch. 646, §32(a), 62 Stat. 991; May 24, 1949, ch. 139, §127, 63 Stat. 107; Pub. L. 85–791, §24(b), Aug. 28, 1958, 72 Stat. 949; Pub. L. 98–620, title IV, §402(7)(A), Nov. 8, 1984, 98 Stat. 3357.)

Amendments

1984Pub. L. 98–620 in fourth par., struck out provisions requiring proceedings in such cases in the court of appeals to be made a preferred cause and expedited in every way.

1958Pub. L. 85–791 substituted, in first sentence of second par., "thereupon file in the court the record in such proceedings as provided in section 2112 of title 28" for "forthwith prepare, certify, and file in the court a full and accurate transcript of the record in such proceedings, including the complaint, the evidence, and the report and order", substituted, in second sentence of second par., "record" for "transcript", substituted in third par., "petition" for "transcript", and struck out, in fourth par., ", duly certified" after "admitted".

Change of Name

Act June 25, 1948, as amended by act May 24, 1949, substituted "court of appeals" for "circuit court of appeals" wherever appearing.

Effective Date of 1984 Amendment

Amendment by Pub. L. 98–620 not applicable to cases pending on Nov. 8, 1984, see section 403 of Pub. L. 98–620, set out as an Effective Date note under section 1657 of Title 28, Judiciary and Judicial Procedure.

Effective Date

See section 1610 of this title.

§1601. Enforcement of order

If any person against whom an order is issued under section 1599 of this title fails to obey the order, the Secretary of Agriculture, or the United States, by its Attorney General, may apply to the court of appeals of the United States, within the circuit where the person against whom the order was issued resides or has his principal place of business, for the enforcement of the order, and shall file the record in such proceedings, as provided in section 2112 of title 28. Upon such filing of the application the court shall cause notice thereof to be served upon the person against whom the order was issued. The evidence to be considered, the procedure to be followed, and the jurisdiction of the court shall be the same as provided in section 1600 of this title for applications to set aside or modify orders.

(Aug. 9, 1939, ch. 615, title IV, §411, 53 Stat. 1288; June 25, 1948, ch. 646, §32(a), 62 Stat. 991; May 24, 1949, ch. 139, §127, 63 Stat. 107; Pub. L. 85–791, §24(c), Aug. 28, 1958, 72 Stat. 949; Pub. L. 98–620, title IV, §402(7)(B), Nov. 8, 1984, 98 Stat. 3357.)

Amendments

1984Pub. L. 98–620 struck out second par. which required proceedings in such cases to be made a preferred cause and expedited in every way.

1958Pub. L. 85–791 substituted "file the record in such proceedings as provided in section 2112 of title 28" for "certify and file with its application a full and accurate transcript of the record in such proceedings, including the complaint, the evidence, the report, and the order" in first sentence, and struck out "and transcript" after "application" in second sentence.

Change of Name

Act June 25, 1948, as amended by act May 24, 1948, as amended by act May 24, 1949, substituted "court of appeals" for "circuit court of appeals" wherever appearing in this section.

Effective Date of 1984 Amendment

Amendment by Pub. L. 98–620 not applicable to cases pending on Nov. 8, 1984, see section 403 of Pub. L. 98–620, set out as an Effective Date note under section 1657 of Title 28, Judiciary and Judicial Procedure.

Effective Date

See section 1610 of this title.

§1602. Separability

The institution of any one of the proceedings provided for in sections 1595, 1596, 1599 to 1601 of this title shall not bar institution of any of the others, except that action shall not be instituted under both subsections 1596(a) and (b) of this title for the same cause of action. Nothing in this chapter shall be construed as requiring the Secretary of Agriculture to recommend prosecution, or institution of civil penalty proceedings, libel proceedings, cease-and-desist proceedings, or proceedings for the enforcement of a cease-and-desist order, for minor violations of this chapter or the rules and regulations made and promulgated thereunder whenever he believes that the public interest will be adequately served by suitable written notice or warning.

(Aug. 9, 1939, ch. 615, title IV, §412, 53 Stat. 1288; July 9, 1956, ch. 520, §3, 70 Stat. 508.)

Amendments

1956—Act July 9, 1956, inserted references to civil penalties as well as criminal penalties under section 1596 of this title.

Effective Date of 1956 Amendment

Amendments made by act July 9, 1956, applicable only with respect to violations occurring after July 9, 1956, see section 4 of act July 9, 1956, set out as a note under section 1596 of this title.

Effective Date

See section 1610 of this title.

§1603. Procedural powers; witness fees and mileage

(a) In carrying on the work herein authorized, the Secretary of Agriculture, or any officer or employee designated by him for such purpose, shall have power to hold hearings, administer oaths, sign and issue subpenas, examine witnesses, take depositions, and require the production of books, records, accounts, memoranda, and papers, and have access to office and warehouse premises. Upon refusal by any person to appear, testify, or produce pertinent books, records, accounts, memoranda, and papers in response to a subpena, or to permit access to premises, the proper United States district court shall have power to compel obedience thereto.

(b) Witnesses summoned before the Secretary or any officer or employee designated by him shall be paid the same fees and mileage that are paid witnesses in the courts of the United States, and witnesses whose depositions are taken and the persons taking the same shall severally be entitled to the same fees as are paid for like service in the courts of the United States.

(Aug. 9, 1939, ch. 615, title IV, §413, 53 Stat. 1289.)

Effective Date

See section 1610 of this title.

§1604. Publication

After judgment by the court, or the issuance of a cease and desist order, in any case arising under this chapter, notice thereof shall be given by publication in such manner as may be prescribed in the rules and regulations made and promulgated under this chapter.

(Aug. 9, 1939, ch. 615, title IV, §414, 53 Stat. 1289.)

Effective Date

See section 1610 of this title.

§1605. Authorization of appropriations

(a) There is authorized to be appropriated, out of any money in the Treasury not otherwise appropriated, such sums as may be necessary for administering this chapter.

(b) Funds appropriated for carrying into effect the purpose of this chapter shall be available for allotment by the Secretary of Agriculture to the bureaus and offices of the Department of Agriculture and for transfer to other departments and agencies of the Government which the Secretary of Agriculture may call upon to assist or cooperate in carrying out such purposes or for services rendered or to be rendered in connection therewith.

Appropriations made under this authorization, within the limit prescribed in such appropriations, may be expended for the share of the United States in the expense of the International Seed Testing Congress in carrying out plans for correlating the work of the various adhering governments on problems relating to seed analyses or other subjects which the Congress may determine to be necessary in the interest of international seed trade.

(Aug. 9, 1939, ch. 615, title IV, §415, 53 Stat. 1289; Sept. 21, 1944, ch. 412, title VII, §701(b), 58 Stat. 741.)

Amendments

1944—Act Sept. 21, 1944, added last par.

Effective Date

See section 1610 of this title.

§1606. Authorization of expenditures

The Secretary of Agriculture is authorized to make such expenditures for rent, outside of the District of Columbia, printing, binding, telegrams, telephones, books of reference, publications, furniture, stationery, office and laboratory equipment, travel, and other supplies, including reporting services, such research necessary to develop methods of processing, bulking, blending, sampling, testing, and merchandising seeds necessary to the administration of this chapter and other necessary expenses in the District of Columbia and elsewhere, and as may be appropriated for by the Congress.

(Aug. 9, 1939, ch. 615, title IV, §416, 53 Stat. 1289.)

Effective Date

See section 1610 of this title.

§1607. Cooperation with other governmental agencies

The Secretary of Agriculture is authorized to cooperate with any other department or agency of the Federal Government; or with any State, Territory, District, or possession, or department, agency, or political subdivision thereof; or with any producing, trading, or consuming organization, whether operating in one or more jurisdictions, in carrying out the provisions of this chapter.

(Aug. 9, 1939, ch. 615, title IV, §417, 53 Stat. 1289.)

Effective Date

See section 1610 of this title.

§1608. Separability

If any provision of this chapter, or the application thereof to any person or circumstance, is held invalid, the remainder of the chapter, and the application of such provisions to other persons or circumstances, shall not be affected thereby.

(Aug. 9, 1939, ch. 615, title IV, §418, 53 Stat. 1290.)

Effective Date

See section 1610 of this title.

§1609. Repeals

Sections 111 to 116 of this title are repealed on the one hundred and eightieth day after August 9, 1939: Provided, however, That the notices with respect to imported alfalfa and red clover seed promulgated by the Secretary of Agriculture under the authority of sections 111 to 116 of this title, and in effect on August 9, 1939, shall remain with the same full force and effect as if promulgated under this chapter.

(Aug. 9, 1939, ch. 615, title IV, §419, 53 Stat. 1290.)

Effective Date

See section 1610 of this title.

§1610. Effective date

This chapter shall take effect as follows: As to agricultural seeds, and the importation of vegetable seeds, on the one hundred and eightieth day after August 9, 1939; as to vegetable seeds in interstate commerce, one year after August 9, 1939; and as to sections 1591 to 1593 of this title, on August 9, 1939.

(Aug. 9, 1939, ch. 615, title IV, §420, 53 Stat. 1290.)