Chapter 07 - Agriculture Produce Board

27.0701 Authority.

The rule codified in this chapter is adopted under the authority of Section 6 of Article IV of the Revised Constitution of American Samoa, and 4.0302(a) and 4.1002 ASCA.

27.0702 Definitions.

In this chapter, unless the context otherwise requires :

(1) "Agriculture produce" means any agricultural commodity;

(2) "Board" means the Agriculture Produce Board;

(3) "Chairman" means the chairman of the board;

(4) "Government" means Samoa government; and

(5) "Governor" means the Governor of American Samoa.

27.0703 Establishment of the board.

(a) There is established the Agriculture Produce Board.

(b) The board consists of the following members:

(1) The Director of Agriculture, who shall be the chairman;

(2) The Deputy Secretary of Samoan Affairs, who shall be the deputy chairman;

(3) The Agricultural Economist of the Office of Development Planning, who shall be the secretary;

(4) The Chief Quarantine Officer; and

(5) Two private, commercial farmers appointed by the chairman and approved by the Governor.

(c) The powers of the board affected by any vacancy in its provided that a quorum is present.

27.0704 Terms of office.

(a) Members of the board by virtue of office or position serve while holding that office or position.

(b) Appointed members of the board shall hold office for a period of 4 years, and may be reappointed. Subject to the provisions of 27.0705, every appointed member shall continue to hold office until his successor comes into office.

27.0705 Vacancies.

(a) An appointed member may at any time resign his office by notice in writing to the chairman.

(b) The Governor, acting on the advice of the chairman or the board, may remove an appointed member:

(1) For disability or neglect of duty;

(2) If he is satisfied that the appointed member has left American Samoa permanently; or

(3) If the appointed member is absent from 3 consecutive meetings of the board without the permission of the board.

(c) If a member dies, resigns, or is removed from office, the vacancy shall be filled by an appointment made in the same manner as that of the member vacating office.

27.0706 Board meetings.

(a) Board meetings shall be held at such times and places as the chairman or the board directs.

(b) The chairman shall call a meeting whenever required to do so in writing by any 2 members.

(c) At any meeting 4 members shall form a quorum.

(d) The chairman shall preside at every meeting at which he is present.

(e) If the chairman is for any reason absent from a meeting:

(1) The deputy chairman shall preside at that meeting if he is present; and

(2) If the deputy chairman is not present, the members shall appoint one of their members to preside at that meeting.

(f) In the absence from a meeting of any member of the board specified in paragraphs (1), (2), (3) or (4) of 27.0703(b), that member may appoint any other senior official of his respective government agency to be his representative at that meeting and a representative so appointed shall while he attends the meeting be deemed for all purposes to be a member of the board, except that he shall not preside at the meeting.

(g) At every meeting, the chairman or other person presiding shall participate fully in deliberations, and in the case of an equality of votes, he shall cast the deciding vote.

(h) Every question arising at a meeting shall be decided by a majority of the votes recorded on the question.

27.0707 Disclosure of conflicting interests.

(a) Any member, who otherwise than as a member, is directly or indirectly interested in any business of the board, shall, as soon as possible after the relevant facts have come to notice disclose the nature of his interest at a meeting of the board.

(b) A disclosure under subsection (a) of this section shall be recorded in the minutes of the board and except as otherwise provided by a resolution of the board, the member shall not take part after the disclosure in any deliberations or decisions relating to the business, but shall be counted as present for the purpose of forming a quorum of the board for any such deliberations or decisions.

27.0708 Board objectives.

The board shall have the following general objectives:

(1) To control and regulate the supply of agriculture produce in American Samoa;

(2) To promote and foster the stability of domestic agriculture produce in American Samoa;

(3) To promote and foster a sound marketing structure for agriculture produce in American Samoa; and

(4) To promote and foster regional cooperation in terms of the trading patterns of agriculture produce in a manner conducive to the orderly and balanced economic development of American Samoa.

27.0709 Board powers.

In pursuance of its objectives, the board shall have the following powers concerning the importation of agriculture produce into American Samoa :

(1) To formulate policies, and to keep under review and, where necessary, develop changes in such policies;

(2) To recommend to the Governor the adoption of rules by the Governor to implement policies;

(3) To issue licenses for importation on conditions in accordance with such rules;

(4) To give any directions or instructions as are reasonably necessary for licensees or government agencies to carry out the conditions of licenses and provisions of governing rules; and

(5) To execute such other functions as this chapter or the Governor may direct.

27.0710 License eligibility.

The following eligibility requirements for an agriculture produce license are established :

(1) Each licensee must be either a sole proprietor, partnership or corporation authorized to do business under the laws of American Samoa;

(2) Sole proprietors and partners must be 21 years of age or over;

(3) Each license must provide evidence satisfactory to the board of financial capability to import agriculture produce in compliance with the provisions of 27.0711;

(4) Each licensee must present evidence satisfactory to the board of arrangements with one or more suppliers of agriculture produce; and

(5) Each licensee must have prior experience in the importation and sale of agriculture produce, or an employee or agent with such prior experience.

27.0711 Regulations governing licenses.

(a) A licensee shall import agriculture produce in the minimum and maximum amounts, based on weight, number of packaged units, and/or other reasonable criteria established by the board, on a periodic basis determined by the board. If a licensee's shipment will not meet existing board requirements, notification must be given to the board by the Friday prior to the intended shipment week. For purposes of this section, agriculture produce means taro, ta'amu, bananas, and other fruits and vegetables designated by the board.

(b) All agriculture produce imported must be sold at a place in American Samoa covered by a valid agriculture produce license. The board may periodically determine and order that licensed areas will exclude the public market and immediately adjacent public areas in Fagatogo, based on the availability of agriculture produce produced in American Samoa according to reasonable standards of quality and quantity.

(c) All agriculture produce imported pursuant to a license approved by the board must be sold at a reasonable margin of profit.

(d) All agriculture produce must be weighed with an approved or certified two-faced scale at time of sale.

(e) All im ports must be certificate required by the quarantine regulations.

(f) Each licensee is to actively and personally participate in selling imported agriculture produce. If a licensee cannot comply with this requirement, the licensee must designate to the board the person(s) authorized to sell produce for the licensee.

27.0712 License suspension or revocation.

Any license approved by the board may be suspended or revoked after reasonable notice and opportunity for hearing, for the following reasons :

(1) Noncompliance with any of the regulations contained in 27.07110;

(2) Failure to import produce for 2 consecutive weeks with no advance notification to the board; or

(3) Violation of any laws or rules concerning the operation of a business in American Samoa.

27.0713 Enforcement.

(a) The Chief Quarantine Officer in cooperation with the board shall monitor all incoming shipments of agriculture produce from outside of American Samoa to insure compliance with the regulations contained in this chapter. The Chief Quarantine Officer is empowered to deny landling of any unauthorized shipment, and will summarize weekly for the information of the board and interested persons the total poundage imported by each licensee.

(b) In cooperation with the board, the Manager of Weights and Measures will monitor the sale of imported agriculture produce at the public market in Fagatogo and at establishments with valid import licenses to insure that the agriculture produce sold is properly weighed and to check scales for accuracy and official approval or certification.