United States Code

USC most recently checked for updates: Aug 20, 2019

§ 79a.
Weighing authority
(a)
Official weighing in accordance with prescribed regulations

The Secretary shall cause official weighing under standards or procedures provided for in section 76 of this title to be made of all grain required to be officially weighed as provided in section 77 of this title, in accordance with such regulations as the Secretary may prescribe.

(b)
Official weighing or supervision of weighing at grain elevators, warehouses, or other storage or handling facilities located other than at export elevators at export port locations

The Secretary is authorized to cause official weighing or supervision of weighing under standards or procedures provided in section 76 of this title to be performed at any grain elevator, warehouse, or other storage or handling facility located other than at export elevators at export port locations at which official inspection is provided pursuant to the provisions of this chapter, in such manner as the Secretary deems appropriate and under such regulations as the Secretary may provide.

(c)
Personnel performing official weighing or supervision of weighing at locations at which official inspection is provided
(1)
With respect to official weighing or supervision of weighing for locations at which official inspection is provided by the Secretary, the Secretary shall cause such official weighing or supervision of weighing to be performed by official inspection personnel employed by the Secretary.
(2)
With respect to official weighing or supervision of weighing for any location at which official inspection is provided other than by the Secretary, the Secretary is authorized, with respect to export port locations, to delegate authority to perform official weighing or supervision of weighing to the State agency providing official inspection service at such location, and with respect to any other location, to designate the ag
(d)
Official weighing in Canadian ports

The Secretary is authorized to cause official weighing under this chapter to be made, as provided in subsection (a) of section 77 of this title, in Canadian ports of United States export grain transshipped through Canada; and pursuant thereto the Secretary is authorized to enter into an agreement with the Canadian Government for such official weighing. All or specified functions of such weighing shall be performed by official inspection personnel employed by the Secretary or, except for appeals, by persons operating under a contract with the Secretary or as otherwise provided by agreement with the Canadian Government.

(e)
Official weighing or supervision of weighing upon request of operators of grain elevators, warehouses, or other storage or handling facilities

The Secretary is further authorized to cause official weighing or supervision of weighing under standards or procedures provided for in section 76 of this title to be made at grain elevators, warehouses, or other storage or handling facilities not subject to subsection (a) or (b) of this section, upon request of the operator of such grain elevator, warehouse, or other storage or handling facility and in accordance with such regulations as the Secretary may prescribe.

(f)
Demonstrated willingness of operators of grain elevators, warehouses, or other storage or handling facilities to meet equipment and personnel requirements

No official weighing or supervision of weighing shall be provided for the purposes of this chapter at any grain elevator, warehouse, or other storage or handling facility until such time as the operator of the facility has demonstrated to the satisfaction of the Secretary that the operator (1) has and will maintain, in good order, suitable grain-handling equipment and accurate scales for all weighing of grain at the facility, in accordance with the regulations of the Secretary; (2) will permit only competent persons with a reputation for honesty and integrity and who are approved by the Secretary to operate the scales and to handle grain in connection with weighing of the grain, in accordance with this chapter; (3) when weighing is to be done by persons other than official inspection personnel, will require such persons to operate the scales in accordance with the regulations of the Secretary and to require that each lot of grain for delivery from any railroad car, truck, barge, vessel, or other means of conveyance at the facility is entirely removed from such means of conveyance and delivered to the scales without avoidable waste or loss, and each lot of grain weighed at the elevator for shipment from the facility is entirely delivered to the means of conveyance for which intended, and without avoidable waste or loss, in accordance with the regulations of the Secretary; (4) will provide all assistance needed by the Secretary for making any inspection or examination and carrying out other functions at the facility pursuant to this chapter; and (5) will comply with all other requirements of this chapter and the regulations hereunder.

(g)
Official certificates as evidence

Official certificates setting out the results of official weighing or supervision of weighing, issued and not cancelled under this chapter, shall be received by all officers and all courts of the United States as prima facie evidence of the truth of the facts stated therein.

(h)
Weighing prohibited when not in accordance with prescribed procedures

No State or local governmental agency or person shall weigh or state in any document the weight of grain determined at a location where official weighing is required to be performed as provided for in this section except in accordance with the procedures prescribed pursuant to this section.

(i)
Unauthorized weighing prohibited
(1)
In general

No State or local governmental agency or person other than an authorized employee of the Secretary shall perform official weighing or supervision of weighing for the purposes of this chapter except in accordance with the provisions of an unsuspended and unrevoked delegation of authority or designation by the Secretary as provided in this section or as otherwise provided in section 79(i) of this title and subsection (d).

(2)
Geographic boundaries for official agencies
(A)
In general

Subject to subparagraph (B), not more than one designated official agency referred to in paragraph (1) or State agency delegated authority pursuant to subsection (c)(2) to carry out the weighing provisions of this chapter shall be operative at the same time in any geographic area defined by the Secretary.

(B)
Exceptions
If the Secretary determines that the presence of more than one designated official agency in the same geographic area will not undermine the policy stated in section 74 of this title, the Secretary shall allow a designated official agency to cross boundary lines to carry out weighing in another geographic area if—
(i)
the current designated official agency for that geographic area is unable to provide weighing services in a timely manner;
(ii)
a person requesting weighing services in that geographic area has not been receiving official weighing services from the current designated official agency for that geographic area; or
(iii)
the current official agency for that geographic area agrees in writing with the adjacent official agency to waive the current geographic area restriction at the request of the applicant for service.
(C)
Restoration of certain exceptions
(i)
Definition of eligible grain handling facility
In this subparagraph, the term “eligible grain handling facility” means a grain handling facility that—
(I)
was granted an exception under the final rule entitled “Exceptions to Geographic Areas for Official Agencies Under the USGSA” (68 Fed. Reg. 19137 (April 18, 2003)); and
(II)
had that exception revoked between September 30, 2015 and December 20, 2018.
(ii)
Restoration of exceptions
Within 90 days of notification from an eligible grain handling facility, the Secretary shall restore an exception described in clause (i)(I) with an official agency if—
(I)
the eligible grain handling facility and the former excepted official agency agree to restore that exception; and
(II)
the eligible grain handling facility notifies the Secretary of the preferred date for restoration of the exception within 90 days of December 20, 2018.
(j)
Authority under United States Warehouse Act not limited

The provisions of this section shall not limit any authority vested in the Secretary under the United States Warehouse Act (39 Stat. 486, as amended; 7 U.S.C. 241 et seq.).

(k)
Access to elevators, warehouses, or their storage or handling facilities

The representatives of the Secretary shall be afforded access to any elevator, warehouse, or other storage or handling facility from which grain is delivered for shipment in interstate or foreign commerce or to which grain is delivered from shipment in interstate or foreign commerce and all facilities therein for weighing grain.

(l)
Fees
(1)
Weighing fees.—
(A)
In general.—
The Secretary shall, under such regulations as the Secretary may prescribe, charge and collect reasonable fees to cover the estimated costs to the Secretary incident to the performance of the functions provided for under this section except as otherwise provided in paragraph (2) of this subsection.
(B)
Amount of fees.—
The fees authorized by this paragraph shall, as nearly as practicable, cover the costs of the Secretary incident to performance of its 1
1
 So in original. Probably should be “the Secretary’s”.
functions related to weighing, including administrative and supervisory costs directly related thereto.
(C)
Use of fees.—
Fees described in this paragraph shall be deposited into the fund created in section 79(j) of this title.
(D)
Export tonnage fees.—
For an official weighing at an export facility performed by the Secretary, the portion of the fees based on export tonnage shall be based on the rolling 5-year average of export tonnage volumes.
(2)
Each agency to which authority has been delegated under this section and each agency or other person which has been designated to perform functions related to weighing under this section shall pay to the Secretary fees in such amount as the Secretary determines fair and reasonable and as will cover the costs incurred by the Secretary relating to supervision of the agency personnel and supervision by the Secretary of the Secretary’s field office personnel incurred as a result of the functions performed by such agencies, except costs incurred under sections 79(g)(3), 85, 86, and 87c of this title. The fees shall be payable after the services are performed at such times as specified by the Secretary and shall be deposited in the fund created in section 79(j) of this title. Failure to pay the fee within thirty days after it is due shall result in automatic termination of the delegation or designation, which shall be reinstated upon payment, within such period as specified by the Secretary, of the fee currently due plus interest and any further expenses incurred by the Secretary because of such termination. The interest rate on overdue fees shall be as prescribed by the Secretary, but not less than the current average market yield on outstanding marketable obligations of the United States of comparable maturity, plus an additional charge of not to exceed 1 per centum per annum as determined by the Secretary, and adjusted to the nearest one-eighth of 1 per centum.
(3)
Adjustment of fees.—
In order to maintain an operating reserve of not less than 3 and not more than 6 months, the Secretary shall adjust the fees described in paragraphs (1) and (2) not less frequently than annually.
(4)
The authority provided to the Secretary by paragraph (1) and the duties imposed by paragraph (2) on agencies and other persons described in such paragraph shall expire on September 30, 2020. After that date, the Secretary shall, under such regulations as the Secretary may prescribe, charge and collect reasonable fees to cover the estimated costs of official weighing and supervision of weighing except when the official weighing or supervision of weighing is performed by a designated official agency or by a State under a delegation of authority. The fees authorized by this paragraph shall, as nearly as practicable, cover the costs of the Secretary incident to its performance of official weighing and supervision of weighing services in the United States and on United States grain in Canadian ports, excluding administrative and supervisory costs. The fees authorized by this paragraph shall be deposited into a fund which shall be available without fiscal year limitation for the expenses of the Secretary incident to providing services under this chapter.
(Aug. 11, 1916, ch. 313, pt. B, § 7A, as added Pub. L. 94–582, § 9, Oct. 21, 1976, 90 Stat. 2875; amended Pub. L. 95–113, title XVI, §§ 1602(b), 1604(e), 1606(e), Sept. 29, 1977, 91 Stat. 1025, 1027, 1030; Pub. L. 97–35, title I, § 155(2), Aug. 13, 1981, 95 Stat. 371; Pub. L. 100–518, § 2(2), Oct. 24, 1988, 102 Stat. 2585; Pub. L. 103–156, §§ 4(b), 5(b), 12(e), 14(b), Nov. 24, 1993, 107 Stat. 1526, 1528, 1530; Pub. L. 103–354, title II, § 293(a)(4), (7), (8), Oct. 13, 1994, 108 Stat. 3237; Pub. L. 106–472, title I, §§ 102(b), 103(b), Nov. 9, 2000, 114 Stat. 2059, 2060; Pub. L. 109–83, § 1(a), Sept. 30, 2005, 119 Stat. 2053; Pub. L. 114–54, title III, § 301(b)(3)(B), (c), Sept. 30, 2015, 129 Stat. 518, 519; Pub. L. 115–334, title XII, § 12610(b), Dec. 20, 2018, 132 Stat. 5012.)
cite as: 7 USC 79a