2005 Regular Session
By: Senator(s) Hyde-Smith
AN ACT TO CREATE SECTION 69-3-6, MISSISSIPPI CODE OF 1972, TO AUTHORIZE THE DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE AND COMMERCE TO ESTABLISH SEED INSPECTION FEES; TO REQUIRE A SEEDSMAN TO COMPLY WITH FEE AND REPORT REQUIREMENTS; TO REQUIRE SUCH FEES TO BE PLACED IN A SPECIAL FUND; TO AMEND SECTION 69-3-27, MISSISSIPPI CODE OF 1972, TO CONFORM; TO AMEND SECTION 69-3-25, MISSISSIPPI CODE OF 1972, TO DELETE INCORRECT REFERENCE TO A CODE SECTION; AND FOR RELATED PURPOSES.
BE IT ENACTED BY THE LEGISLATURE OF THE STATE OF MISSISSIPPI:
SECTION 1. The following shall be codified as Section 69-3-6, Mississippi Code of 1972:
69-3-6. (1) The department may establish seed inspection fees, prescribe and furnish forms, and require the filing of reports necessary for the payment of the inspection fees. The department may inspect the record of any seedsman during the normal hours of business operation as it deems necessary.
(2) All fees collected under this section shall be deposited into a special fund in the State Treasury. The department may expend the monies in the fund by an annual appropriation approved by the Legislature for the support of the Seed Division of the Bureau of Plant Industry.
(3) Every seedsman who sells or distributes seed for sale, whether in bulk or in containers, within or into Mississippi for planting purposes, shall be assessed a seed inspection fee as required by the department.
(4) Every seedsman must:
(a) Pay an inspection fee on the total number of pounds of seed sold or otherwise distributed for sale within or into the state. Payment of the seed inspection fees shall be the responsibility of the seedsman initiating the first sale of seed within or into the state;
(b) Maintain records, as required by the department, that accurately reflect the total pounds of seed subject to the fees that are handled, sold or offered, or distributed for sale;
(c) File quarterly notarized reports on forms provided or approved by the department, covering the total pounds of all sales of seed subject to the fee and sold during the preceding quarter. The reports and fees due shall be filed with the department no later than thirty (30) days following the end of each calendar quarter.
(5) A seedsman who does not file the quarterly report by the due date shall pay a penalty fee as provided by the regulations of the department. The penalty fee shall be waived if the seedsman obtains prior written approval from the department for a late filing and complies with the late filing requirements.
(6) If a seedsman does not comply with all the requirements of this section, the Commissioner may suspend the seedsman's permit until the seedsman is in compliance.
(7) This section shall stand repealed on July 1, 2009.
SECTION 2. Section 69-3-27, Mississippi Code of 1972, is amended as follows:
69-3-27. All fees collected by the Commissioner under this article, except those fees collected under Section 69-3-6, shall be paid * * * to the State Treasurer who shall deposit the fees in the General Fund in the State Treasury.
SECTION 3. Section 69-3-25, Mississippi Code of 1972, is amended as follows:
69-3-25. 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 act 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 less than One Hundred Dollars ($100.00) and not more than Five Hundred Dollars ($500.00). * * * Nothing in this act shall be construed as requiring the Commissioner to recommend prosecution for minor violations of this act 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.
SECTION 4. This act shall take effect and be in force from and after its passage.