1997 Regular Session
By: Senator(s) Thames, Harvey, Stogner, Smith
Senate Bill 2622
(As Sent to Governor)
AN ACT TO AMEND SECTION 75-47-5, MISSISSIPPI CODE OF 1972, TO CLARIFY THE TERMS "REGISTRANT" OR "GUARANTOR" IN RELATION TO THE MISSISSIPPI FERTILIZER LAW OF 1970; TO AMEND SECTION 75-47-11, MISSISSIPPI CODE OF 1972, TO CLARIFY THAT THE REGISTRANT OR GUARANTOR IS RESPONSIBLE FOR REPORTING THE FERTILIZER TONNAGE SOLD AND PAYING THE INSPECTION FEE; TO AMEND SECTION 75-47-13, MISSISSIPPI CODE OF 1972, TO CHANGE THE FREQUENCY AND METHOD OF REPORTING FERTILIZER TONNAGE SOLD; AND FOR RELATED PURPOSES.
BE IT ENACTED BY THE LEGISLATURE OF THE STATE OF MISSISSIPPI:
SECTION 1. Section 75-47-5, Mississippi Code of 1972, is amended as follows:
75-47-5. When used in this chapter:
(a) The term "commercial fertilizer" means any substance containing one or more recognized plant nutrient(s) which is used for its plant nutrient content and which is designed for use or claimed to have value in promoting plant growth, except unmanipulated animal and vegetable manures, marl, lime, limestone, wood ashes and gypsum, and other products exempted by regulation of the commissioner and state chemist.
(1) A "fertilizer material" is a commercial fertilizer which either:
A. Contains important quantities of no more than one (1) of the primary plant nutrients (nitrogen, phosphoric acid and potash), or
B. Has approximately eighty-five (85%) of its plant nutrient content present in the form of a single chemical compound, or
C. Is derived from a plant or animal residue or by-product or a natural material deposit which has been processed in such a way that its content of primary plant nutrients has not been materially changed except by purification and concentration.
(2) A "mixed fertilizer" is a commercial fertilizer containing any combination or mixture of fertilizer materials in which is included at least two (2) primary plant food elements.
(3) A "specialty fertilizer" is a commercial fertilizer distributed primarily for nonfarm use, such as home gardens, lawns, shrubbery, flowers, golf courses, municipal parks, cemeteries, greenhouses and nurseries.
(4) A "bulk fertilizer" is a commercial fertilizer distributed in a nonpackaged form.
(b) The term "brand" means a term, design, or trademark used in connection with one or several grades of commercial fertilizer.
(c) Guaranteed Analysis:
(1) Until the commissioner and state chemist prescribe the alternative form of "guaranteed analysis" in accordance with the provisions of subparagraph (2) hereof, the term "guaranteed analysis" shall mean the minimum percentage of plant nutrients claimed in the following order and form:
A. Total Nitrogen (N) ______ percent
Available Phosphoric Acid
(P2O5) ______ percent
Soluble Potash (K2O) ______ percent
B. For unacidulated mineral phosphatic materials, total phosphoric acid and degree of fineness must also be guaranteed, for basic slag degree of fineness must also be, and total phosphoric acid may be guaranteed. For bone, tankage and other organic phosphate materials, the total phosphoric acid and/or degree of fineness may also be guaranteed.
C. Guarantees for plant nutrients other than nitrogen, phosphorus and potassium may be permitted or required by regulation of the commissioner and state chemist. The guarantees for such other nutrients shall be expressed in the form of the element. The sources of such other nutrients (oxides, salt, chelates, etc.) may be required to be stated on the application for registration and may be included as a parenthetical statement on the label. Other beneficial substances or compounds, determinable by laboratory methods, also may be guaranteed by permission of the commissioner and state chemist and with the advice of the director of the agricultural and forestry experimental station. When any plant nutrients or other substances or compounds are guaranteed, they shall be subject to inspection and analysis in accord with the methods and regulations prescribed by the state chemist.
D. Potential basicity or acidity expressed in terms of calcium carbonate equivalent in multiples of fifty pounds per ton, when required by regulation.
(2) When the commissioner and state chemist find, after public hearing following due notice, that the requirement for expressing the guaranteed analysis of phosphorus and potassium in elemental form would not impose an economic hardship on distributors and users of fertilizer by reason of conflicting labeling requirements among the states, they may require by regulation thereafter that the "guaranteed analysis" shall be in the following form:
Total Nitrogen (N) ______ percent
Available Phosphorus (P) ______ percent
Soluble potassium (K) ______ percent
Provided, however, that the effective date of said regulation shall be not less than six (6) months following the issuance thereof, and provided, further, that for a period two (2) years following the effective date of said regulation the equivalent of phosphorus and potassium may also be shown in the form of phosphoric acid and potash; provided, however, that after the effective date of a regulation issued under the provisions of this section, requiring that phosphorus and potassium be shown in the elemental form, the guaranteed analysis for nitrogen, phosphorus, and potassium shall constitute the grade.
(d) The term "grade" means the percentage of total nitrogen, available phosphorus or phosphoric acid, and soluble potassium or soluble potash stated in whole numbers in the same terms, order and percentages as in the guaranteed analysis. Provided, however, that fertilizer materials, bone meal, manures, and similar raw materials may be guaranteed in fractional units.
(e) The term "official sample" means any sample of commercial fertilizer taken by the commissioner or his agent and designated as "official" by the state chemist.
(f) The term "ton" means a net weight of two thousand (2,000) pounds avoirdupois.
(g) The term "percent" or "percentage" means the percentage by weight.
(h) The term "person" includes individual, partnership, association, firm and corporation.
(i) The term "distributor" means any person who imports, consigns, manufactures, produces, compounds, mixes, or blends commercial fertilizer, or who offers for sale, sells, barters or otherwise supplies commercial fertilizer in this state.
(j) The term "registrant" or "guarantor" means the person who manufactures, blends, sells or offers fertilizer for sale under his name or brand, and who is registered with the Department of Agriculture and Commerce under the provisions of this chapter or rule or regulation adopted pursuant to this chapter.
(k) The term "label" means the display of all written, printed or graphic matter upon the immediate container or statement accompanying a commercial fertilizer.
(l) The term "labeling" means all written, printed or graphic matter, upon or accompanying any commercial fertilizer, or advertisements, brochures, posters, television and radio announcements used in promoting the sale of such commercial fertilizers.
(m) The term "unit" means one percent (1%) of the nutrient referred to in a ton of fertilizer.
SECTION 2. Section 75-47-11, Mississippi Code of 1972, is amended as follows:
75-47-11. (1) There shall be paid to the commissioner for all commercial fertilizers distributed in this state an inspection fee at the rate of Twenty-five Cents (254) per ton, provided that sales to manufacturers or exchanges between them are hereby exempted. Fees so collected shall be used for the payment of the costs, by act of the Legislature, of inspection, sampling and analysis, and other expenses necessary for the administration of this chapter. On individual packages of commercial fertilizer containing ten (10) pounds or less, there shall be paid in lieu of the annual registration fee of Ten Dollars ($10.00) per brand and grade and the Twenty-five Cent (254) per ton inspection fee, an annual registration fee and inspection fee of Fifty Dollars ($50.00) for each brand and grade sold or distributed. Where a person sells commercial fertilizer in packages of ten (10) pounds or less and in packages over ten (10) pounds, this annual registration and inspection fee of Fifty Dollars ($50.00) shall apply only to that portion sold in packages of ten (10) pounds or less, and that portion sold in packages over ten (10) pounds shall be subject to the same inspection fee of Twenty-five Cents (254) per ton as provided in this chapter.
(2) Every registrant or guarantor who distributes a commercial fertilizer in this state shall file with the commissioner, on forms furnished by the commissioner, a quarterly statement for the periods ending September 30, December 31, March 31 and June 30, setting forth the number of net tons of each commercial fertilizer distributed in this state during such quarter. The report shall be due on or before the thirtieth day of the month following the close of each quarter. Upon such statement the registrant shall pay the inspection fee at the rate stated in paragraph (1) of this section.
If the tonnage report is not filed and the payment of inspection fee is not made within thirty (30) days after the end of the quarter, a collection fee amounting to ten percent (10%) of the amount, but in no case less than Ten Dollars ($10.00), shall be assessed against the registrant, and the amount of fees due shall constitute a debt and become the basis of a judgment against the registrant.
(3) When more than one * * * person is involved in the distribution of a commercial fertilizer, the last person who has the fertilizer registered and who distributes to a nonregistrant, dealer or consumer, is responsible for reporting the tonnage and paying the inspection fee * * *.
SECTION 3. Section 75-47-13, Mississippi Code of 1972, is amended as follows:
75-47-13. All fertilizer registrants transacting, distributing or selling commercial fertilizer to a nonregistrant shall file with the commissioner a summary quarterly report showing the county code of the consignee, each grade of commercial fertilizer, the amounts in tons, the Uniform Fertilizer Tonnage Reporting System (UFTRS) code, the form in which the fertilizer was distributed (bag, bulk or liquid) and the use (farm or non-farm). This report of tonnage sold shall be reported by one (1) of the following methods:
(a) Submitting a summary report on forms furnished by the commissioner; or
(b) Submitting an electronic disk format or text file acceptable to the UFTRS. Each reporting method shall be due on the specified dates set forth in Section 75-47-11(2). No information furnished to the commissioner under this section shall be disclosed in such a way as to divulge the methods of operation of any registrant.
SECTION 4. This act shall take effect and be in force from and after July 1, 1997.