Late Payment and Interest Charges Considered on Raspberry Assessments
The Department of Agriculture’s Agricultural Marketing Service is seeking comments no later than Dec. 12 on a proposed rule that would prescribe late payment and interest charges on past due assessments under the Processed Raspberry Promotion, Research and Information Order.
Under this order, assessments are collected from U.S. producers and importers (with certain exemptions) and used for research and promotion projects designed to maintain and expand the market for processed raspberries (i.e., those that have been frozen, dried, pureed, made into juice or altered by mechanical processes). Domestic assessments are due annually by Oct. 31 while import assessments are collected monthly by U.S. Customs and Border Protection.
AMS is now proposing to impose a one-time late payment charge of 10 percent of the assessments due, before interest charges have accrued, on any assessments not received within 30 calendar days of the due date. The agency is also proposing that one percent per month interest on the outstanding balance, including any late payment and accrued interest, be added to any accounts for which payment has not been received within 30 calendar days of the due date. Such interest would continue to accrue monthly until the outstanding balance is paid.