BILL ANALYSIS                                                                                                                                                                                                    

                                                                SB 250
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        SB 250 (Wolk)
        As Amended  August 5, 2013
        Majority vote 

         SENATE VOTE  :35-2  
         AGRICULTURE         7-0         JUDICIARY           9-1          
        |Ayes:|Eggman, Olsen, Atkins,    |Ayes:|Wieckowski, Wagner,       |
        |     |Dahle, Pan, Quirk, Yamada |     |Alejo, Chau, Dickinson,   |
        |     |                          |     |Garcia, Maienschein,      |
        |     |                          |     |Muratsuchi, Stone         |
        |     |                          |     |                          |
        |     |                          |Nays:|Gorell                    |
        |     |                          |     |                          |
         APPROPRIATIONS      16-1                                         
        |Ayes:|Gatto, Harkey, Bigelow,   |
        |     |Bocanegra, Bradford, Ian  |
        |     |Calderon, Campos, Eggman, |
        |     |Gomez, Hall, Holden,      |
        |     |Linder, Pan, Quirk,       |
        |     |Wagner, Weber             |
        |     |                          |
        |Nays:|Donnelly                  |
        |     |                          |
         SUMMARY  :  This bill establishes the Olive Oil Commission of  
        California (OOCC) to engage in olive oil quality and nutritional  
        research and to recommend grades and labeling standards.  This bill  
        authorizes OOCC to levy an annual assessment, as specified, on  
        producers, as defined.  This bill becomes operative upon a favorable  
        producer referendum vote.  Specifically,  this bill  :  

        1)Creates the OOCC to engage in olive oil quality and nutritional  
          research, and to recommend grades and labeling standards to the  
          Secretary of the California Department of Food and Agriculture  


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        2)States declarations and general provisions and definitions, as  

        3)Creates a board of directors (board) with prescribed membership,  
          powers, duties and responsibilities of OOCC.

        4)Designates that all monies received by any person from assessments  
          levied be deposited in banks of the board's choosing.

        5)Establishes implementation and voting procedures.

        6)Requires 40% of the total number of producers to cast a referendum  
          vote to begin operation of OOCC and that either of the following  
          must also occur:

           a)   Of those votes, 65% must vote in favor of OOCC.  That same  
             65% must also represent producers who, when total production  
             volume is combined, produce the majority of oil olives  
             processed into olive oil of all those participating in the  
             referendum vote; and,
           b)   Of those votes, a majority of producers must vote in favor  
             of OOCC, and those producers must represent 65% or more of the  
             total quantity of oil olives processed into olive oil by those  
             participating in the referendum vote.

        7)Establishes an assessment rate to be paid by producers of not more  
          than $0.25 per gallon of olive oil.  An increase in this rate must  
          be approved by a referendum vote, and a penalty shall be paid on  
          any past due assessment.

        8)Authorizes OOCC to levy civil penalties not exceeding $1,000, as  

        9)Authorizes OOCC to commence civil actions and utilize all remedies  
          provided in law for collection of assessments and civil penalties.

         EXISTING LAW  authorizes various marketing and promotion commissions  
        (commissions) to promote the production and marketing of California  
        agricultural commodities.  Commissions have a variety of powers  
        covering promotion, advertising, education, production or  
        post-harvest research, and quality standards and inspections.   
        Commissions cover a variety of commodities.


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         FISCAL EFFECT  :  According to the Assembly Appropriations Committee,  
        this bill has startup costs to CDFA of $40,000 and annual costs of  
        up to $20,000, but these costs will be borne by OOCC.   

         COMMENTS  :  According to the author, "California's olive oil industry  
        has been growing rapidly over the past five years.  The industry  
        believes it is time to support a coordinated effort to provide for  
        olive oil research and standards to promote the sustainability and  
        success of this important agricultural product."

        Supporters state OOCC will address fraudulent practices in the  
        marketplace.  Supporters state that California produces some of the  
        highest quality extra virgin olive oil.  However, the California  
        olive oil industry faces fierce global competition from producers  
        who do not always adhere to the same high quality standards as  
        California producers.  

        According to CDFA, the purpose of marketing programs is to provide  
        agricultural producers and handlers an organizational structure,  
        operating under government sanction, which allows them to solve  
        production and marketing problems collectively that could not be  
        addressed individually. Current marketing programs' activities  
        include commodity promotion, research, and maintenance of quality  
        standards.  Commissions provide a structure for solving problems and  
        also provide a vehicle for collecting funds to support activities.

        For accomplishing the purposes stated by the author for this  
        industry, a commission may be an appropriate entity.  Current  
        commissions and marketing orders have been successful in expanding  
        markets, improving product quality, and providing more research for  
        pests and disease prevention.  In recent years, one commission was  
        terminated by the industry and another had an audit by the Secretary  
        of CDFA, which revealed potential misuse of funds.  This bill has  
        language requiring annual audits, and upon determination of the  
        need, the Secretary of CDFA may conduct a fiscal and administrative  
        audit of OOCC.

        Analysis Prepared by :    Victor Francovich / AGRI. / (916) 319-2084  
        FN: 0002120


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