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FAC Sec 79120-79132 Assessments and Records (Sea Urchins)
FOOD AND AGRICULTURAL CODE
79120. (a) The commission shall establish an assessment for the
season not later than February 1 of each year or continue the
previous assessment. The assessment in the first year of the
commission's operation shall be one cent ($0.01) for each pound of
sea urchin landed or delivered by divers to handlers in the state.
The maximum assessment that can be levied by majority vote of the
commission shall not exceed three cents ($0.03) for each pound of sea
(b) An assessment greater than the amount provided for in this
section may not be levied unless and until a greater fee is approved
by a majority of the commission and by eligible divers and handlers
pursuant to procedures specified in this act.
(c) The diver and the handler shall each pay one-half of the
assessment established pursuant to this section. If the divers do
not vote, pursuant to this act, to approve the commission, a diver is
not required to pay any portion of the assessment. If handlers do
not vote, pursuant to this act, to approve the commission, a handler
is not required to pay any portion of the assessment. If either
divers or handlers, but not both, vote in favor of the commission,
the assessment may not exceed one-half of the amounts authorized by
(d) Any assessment that is levied as provided for in this section
is a personal debt of every person assessed.
79121. (a) Every person or entity who handles sea urchin in any
quantity shall keep a complete and accurate record of all
transactions involving the purchase or sale of sea urchin. The
records shall be in a simple form and contain such information as the
commission shall prescribe. The records shall be preserved by the
handler for a period of three years, and shall be offered and
submitted for inspection at any reasonable time upon written demand
of the commission or its duly authorized agent.
(b) The assessment imposed by this article shall be paid
consistent with the applicable procedures required for the payment of
landing taxes pursuant to Article 7.5 (commencing with Section 8040)
of Chapter 1 of Part 3 of Division 6 of the Fish and Game Code. The
fees imposed shall be paid quarterly pursuant to Section 8053 of the
Fish and Game Code. If fees are not paid as required, the
commission shall collect amounts owed under the procedures prescribed
for sales and use taxes provided in Chapter 5 (commencing with
Section 6451) of Part 1 of Division 2 of the Revenue and Taxation
Code, insofar as they may be applicable, and for those purposes,
"board" means the commission and "the date on which the tax became
due and payable" means 30 days after the close of the quarter for
which it is due.
(c) Sections 8058 to 8070, inclusive, of the Fish and Game Code,
shall apply to claims for overpayment of assessments to the
commission. For the purposes of this subdivision, "department" as
used in those sections, means the commission, and "landing tax" means
the assessment imposed under this article.
79122. (a) All proprietary information obtained by the commission
or the secretary from any source, including, but not limited to, the
names and addresses of divers and the volume and value of landings
made or purchased, is confidential and shall not be disclosed except
when required by a court order after a hearing in a judicial
(b) Information on volume and value of landings, and any other
related information that is required for reports to governmental
agencies, financial reports to the commission, or aggregate sales and
inventory information, and any other information that gives only
totals, but excludes individual diver or handler information, may be
disclosed by the commission.
79123. The first handler of sea urchin being assessed shall deduct
the assessment from amounts paid by him or her to the diver, and
shall be a trustee of these assessments until they are paid to the
commission at the time and in the manner prescribed by the
commission. Failure to collect the assessment from any diver shall
not exempt the handler from liability. In addition, failure of a
handler to remit the collected diver assessments to the commission
shall not relieve the diver of this obligation.
79124. When the handler is a corporation, all of the directors and
officers of the corporation in their capacity as individuals shall be
included, and any liability for violating this chapter, including
but not limited to, failing to pay assessments or to collect
assessments, shall also include identical liability upon each
director or officer of the corporation.
79125. Any person who fails to pay any assessment, including
submitting any records required by the commission, within the time
required by the commission shall pay to the commission a penalty of
10 percent of the amount of the assessment determined to be due, and,
in addition, shall pay 1 1/2 percent interest per month on the
79126. In addition to any other penalty imposed, the commission may
require any person who fails to pay an assessment or related charge
pursuant to this article to furnish and maintain a surety bond in a
form and amount, and for a period of time, specified by the
commission as assurance that all payments to the commission will be
made when due.
79127. It is a misdemeanor for any person to do any of the
(a) Willfully render or furnish a false report, statement, or
record required by the commission, or in any way to affect the
shipment and marketing of sea urchin with the intent to avoid payment
(b) Fail to render or furnish a report, statement, or record
required by the commission.
(c) When engaged in the fishing of sea urchin or in the wholesale
or retail trade of sea urchin, to fail or refuse to furnish to the
commission or its duly authorized agents, upon request, information
concerning the name and address of the persons to whom sea urchin
were sold or from whom sea urchin were received, and the quantity
sold or received.
(d) Secrete, destroy, or alter records required to be kept under
79128. The commission shall establish procedures for the purpose of
according individuals aggrieved by its actions or determinations an
informal hearing before the commission, or before a committee of the
commission designated for that purpose. Appeals from decisions of
the commission may be made to the secretary. The determination of
the secretary shall be subject to judicial review upon petition filed
with the appropriate superior court.
79129. (a) The commission may commence civil actions and utilize
all remedies provided in law or equity for the collection of
assessments and civil penalties, and for the obtaining of injunctive
relief or specific performance regarding this chapter and the
regulations adopted pursuant to this chapter. A court shall issue to
the commission any requested writ of attachment or injunctive relief
upon a prima facie showing by verified complaint that a named
defendant has violated this chapter or any other regulation of the
commission, including, but not limited to, the nonpayment of
assessments. No bond shall be required to be posted by the
commission as a condition for the issuance of any writ of attachment
or injunctive relief.
(b) A writ of attachment shall be issued pursuant to Chapter 4
(commencing with Section 485.010) of Title 6.5 of Part 2 of the Code
of Civil Procedure, except that the showing specified in Section
485.010 of the Code of Civil Procedure is not required. Injunctive
relief shall be issued pursuant to Chapter 3 (commencing with Section
525) of Title 7 of Part 2 of the Code of Civil Procedure, except
that the showing of irreparable harm or inadequate remedy at law
specified in Sections 526 and 527 of the Code of Civil Procedure is
(c) Upon entry of any final judgment on behalf of the commission
against any defendant, the court shall enjoin the defendant from
conducting any type of business regarding sea urchin until there is
full compliance and satisfaction of the judgment. Upon a favorable
judgment for the commission, it shall be entitled to receive
reimbursement for any reasonable attorney's fees and other actual
related costs. Venue for these actions may be established at the
domicile or place of business of the defendant or in the county of
the principal office of the commission. The commission may be sued
only in the county of its principal office.
79130. Any action by the commission for any violation of this
chapter shall be commenced within two years from the date of
discovery of the alleged violation. Any action against the
commission by any person shall be commenced within two years from the
date of the act of which the person complains.
79131. The termination of this chapter shall not affect or waive
any right, duty, obligation, or liability that has arisen or that may
thereafter arise in connection with this chapter, release or
extinguish any violation of this chapter, or affect or impair any
right or remedies of the commission with respect to any violation.
79132. The commission may consult and enter into agreements with
the Director of Fish and Game, if necessary and appropriate, to
assist in the administration and enforcement of this chapter,
including, but not limited to, collecting assessments authorized by
this chapter and providing routine information regarding the persons
that may be subject to this chapter. If an agreement is established,
the commission shall reimburse the Department of Fish and Game for
reasonable administrative costs associated with the agreement.