Information Collections on Terrestrial Plant Trade, Forfeiture Under Review
The Department of Agriculture’s Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service is requesting comments no later than Dec. 15 on the proposed extension and revision of information collections associated with the regulations for the protection of endangered species of terrestrial plants and for procedures related to the forfeiture of plants or other property.
Terrestrial Plants. Any individual, nursery or other entity wishing to engage in the business of importing, exporting or reexporting terrestrial plants listed in the CITES regulations at 50 CFR 17.12 or 23.23 must obtain a protected plant permit from APHIS. Such entities include importers, exporters or reexporters who sell, barter, collect or otherwise exchange or acquire terrestrial plants as a livelihood or enterprise engaged in for gain or profit. The requirement does not apply to persons engaged in business merely as carriers or customhouse brokers.
To obtain a protected plant permit, entities must complete an application (PPQ Form 621) and submit it to APHIS for approval. Other related information collection activities include notifying APHIS of the impending importation, exportation or reexportation; marking containers used for the importation, exportation or reexportation; and creating and maintaining records of importation, exportation and reexportation.
Forfeiture Procedures. Regulations at 7 CFR part 356 set out procedures for the forfeiture of plants or other property by entities found to be in violation of the Endangered Species Act or the Lacey Act Amendments of 1981. Entities whose property is subject to forfeiture may file with APHIS a waiver of forfeiture procedures, a petition for remission or mitigation of forfeiture, or a request for release of property. APHIS notes that since the last approval of this information collection it no longer requires completion of PPQ Form 625 (Claim and Bond) due to implementation of the Civil Asset Forfeiture Reform Act.