(a) If an administrative committee is authorized to collect an assessment, for each
marketing season or year in which the marketing agreement or license is effective
the committee shall collect from each handler an assessment representing the handler's
pro rata share of the estimated expenses incurred by the department in conducting
hearings and incurred by the administrative committee in administering the agreement
or license during the marketing season or year. The department shall estimate those expenses after each administrative committee
submits to the department a proposed budget.
(b) An assessment levied under this section is a personal debt of each person assessed
and is immediately due and payable to the administrative committee charged with collection. With the approval of the department, an administrative committee may sue in its
own name in a court of competent jurisdiction for the collection of an assessment.
(c) In accordance with the rules of the department, each administrative committee
charged with the collection of assessments shall collect, report, and pay monthly
to the department the amount of the assessments that the department determines will
be necessary to defray the department's cost of administering the marketing agreement
or license during the subsequent month.
(d) The department shall submit to each administrative committee charged with collecting
assessments quarterly statements reporting the receipts and expenditures during the
quarter in connection with the administration of the appropriate marketing agreement
(e) An administrative committee may expend assessments for the purposes set forth
in the marketing agreement or license under which the assessment is collected. The committee shall keep a full and complete record of those expenditures and the
department is entitled to access to that record at any time.
(f) An administrative committee shall retain custody of assessments that are not paid
to the department or expended under Subsection (e) of this section. At the close of the marketing season or year for which an assessment is collected,
the committee shall return to each handler a pro rata share of assessments that are
not paid to the department or expended by the committee.
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