New York Agriculture & Markets Law
Producers’ Bargaining Agencies and Distributors’ Bargaining Agencies
§ 258-l. Producers’ bargaining agencies and distributors’ bargaining agencies.
(a) Incorporated producers’ associations operated under and subject to the cooperative corporations law of this state, or similar laws of another state and organized and controlled by milk producers, may establish producers’ bargaining agencies for the various production areas of the state designated by the commissioner. Cooperative corporations similarly incorporated hereafter and owned and controlled by producers shall be entitled to use and participate in such a bargaining agency and be represented by it in order that producers not now represented by a cooperative association may be entitled to the benefits of this act. Upon presentation of a written certification by a cooperative corporation qualified to receive cooperative payments under a state or a joint federal and state milk marketing order, or orders, or by a cooperative corporation affiliated with a federation of cooperative corporations similarly qualified, to a licensed milk dealer, setting forth a list of its members for the payment of whose milk said dealer is responsible, such dealer shall make payments to such cooperative corporation from moneys due such listed members for milk purchased by the dealer in such amounts as such cooperative shall certify is payable to it; provided that (a) at least the names of 10 members are one the list, or
(b) in the case of dealers receiving milk from 17 or less producers at a plant, the names of at least 51% of such producers are on the list. Such amounts shall be payable monthly to the treasurer of the cooperative corporation, together with a compilation of milk poundage to which such payment is related. At intervals, not more frequent than monthly, each such cooperative shall certify to the dealer involved any additions or withdrawals from its listed membership. As to such changes in memberships so certified, the dealer shall make payments on the additional producers, but shall not be required to make payments to the cooperative corporation on the withdrawn producers. In no event shall a dealer be required to make payments on a producer who is not listed as a member by the certifying cooperative corporation. The voting power of each association participating in such an agency shall be on the basis of one vote for each one hundred producers under contract with such association for the marketing of their milk within such marketing area, and in case of an association with less than one hundred producers under contract with it, a fractional vote in proportion to the number of such producers. Only active contracts shall be considered. The purpose of a producers’ bargaining agency is to negotiate agreements on the basis of orders in the respective marketing areas for presentation to the commissioner for his consideration and approval, as provided in section two hundred and fifty-eight-m herein. A producers’ bargaining agency shall be authorized to negotiate with a distributors’ bargaining agency in such marketing area in regard to arrangements or agreements to be presented to the commissioner as a basis of marketing agreements or orders pursuant to said section two hundred and fifty-eight-m. Each association upon joining or employing the producers’ bargaining agency shall file with it a certified copy of its certificate of incorporation, its by-laws, copies of form of contracts with its producers and a certified statement of the number of such contracts which are in force. A producers’ bargaining agency may appear before and negotiate with the commissioner in regard to marketing agreements or orders, as provided in section two hundred and fifty-eight-m herein. It shall be lawful for such producers’ bargaining agency to act as a common marketing agency for the various cooperative associations of producers which it represents and such cooperative associations may make contracts with each other and with such producers’ agency for such purpose and for the collective processing, preparing for market, handling and marketing of the products of such associations and for effectuating the purposes of this act. In order to carry out and effectuate such purposes, contracts and agreements may be made pursuant to section twenty-five of the co-operative corporations law and as to interstate commerce pursuant to act of congress of February eighteenth, nineteen hundred twenty-two, entitled “An act to authorize association of producers of agricultural products,” (b) A distributors’ bargaining agency may be organized by the distributors in a marketing area. The voting power of each distributor in such bargaining agency shall be in proportion to the quantity of milk distributed by him in such area. Such quantity shall be determined by that distributed during the preceding year as reported to the commissioner. In the New York metropolitan milk marketing area the voting power of each distributor shall be on the basis of one vote for each ten million pounds of milk distributed in such market during the preceding year and in case of a distributor handling a less quantity of milk, a proportionate fractional vote. In other marketing areas the voting basis shall be one vote for each one hundred thousand pounds distributed during the preceding year in such market with a proportionate fractional vote in case of distributors handling a less quantity of milk. The purpose of distributors’ bargaining agencies is to negotiate with producers’ bargaining agencies as to the agreements or the basis of orders in the respective marketing areas for presentation to the commissioner for his consideration and approval, as provided in section two hundred fifty-eight-m herein. A distributors’ bargaining agency may appear before and negotiate with the commissioner in regard to marketing agreements or orders, as provided in section two hundred fifty-eight-m herein. Producers’ bargaining agencies and distributors’ bargaining agencies may also meet and negotiate in order to carry out the purposes of this act and subject to the approval of the commissioner, as provided in section two hundred fifty-eight-m, may make marketing agreements with each other and with cooperative associations in relation to the marketing of milk which may be handled or distributed in more than one marketing area. Such agencies may also meet and negotiate and take such reasonable measures as are necessary and advisable to cooperate with the commissioner and legally constituted authorities of other states and of the United States with respect to the handling and control of milk handled in interstate commerce and carry out and effectuate the provisions of section two hundred fifty-eight-n. Except as specifically provided in section two hundred fifty-eight-m, the activities and operations of producers’ bargaining agencies and distributors’ bargaining agencies and of the constituent members thereof, and contracts, agreements or arrangements made by them, pursuant to the provisions of this subdivision, and of section two hundred fifty-eight-m hereof, shall not be deemed or construed to be conspiracies, combinations, contracts or agreements in restraint of trade or commerce or an illegal monopoly. “Milk production area” as used in this article means those dairy farms maintained primarily as a source of fluid milk for a marketing area. Such primary source of supply shall include farms from which all shipments of milk have been subject to the minimum uniform price provisions of a marketing order or agreement for such market during at least a portion of the preceding two years, together with such other farms as may hereafter be designated by the commissioner as a source of supply for the marketing area in the manner prescribed by section two hundred fifty-eight-j.