(1) Producers and handlers certified by the department, and new applicants for certification, must submit an annual report of their total gross sales and handling charges for all certified organic production and handling. Certified producers and new applicants for producer certification shall pay an annual assessment fee to the department as a percentage of gross sales of organically produced products. Certified handlers and new applicants for handler certification shall pay an annual assessment fee as a percentage of gross sales and handling charges for all products and services included in their Organic Handling System Plans (OHSP):
(a) the annual report and assessment for producers and handlers of all gross sales and handling charges shall be for the previous calendar year;
(b) the report and fees for producers are due on March 15 annually. The report and fees for handlers are due on September 15 annually. The department may assess a 10% penalty or a minimum fee of $25, whichever is greater, for any assessment reports received after the deadline. The department may require past due payment of fees prior to providing certification services.
(2) The assessment fee for producers is 0.5% of sales except that the minimum producer assessment is $150 and the maximum producer assessment is $5,000.
(3) The assessment fee for handlers is 0.5% of sales except that the minimum handler assessment is $150 and the maximum handler assessment is $5,000.
(4) All assessment fees are nonrefundable upon receipt.
(5) Any fees paid or owed in excess of the rule caps stated in ARM 4.17.106 for the year 2015 will be refunded to the producer, or if still owing will be considered void.