H.R. 5883, the Clarification of Treatment of Electronic Sales of Livestock Act of 2016

H.R. 5883

the Clarification of Treatment of Electronic Sales of Livestock Act of 2016

Committee
Agriculture

Date
September 26, 2016 (114th Congress, 2nd Session)

Staff Contact
Communications

Floor Situation

On­­­­ Monday, September 26, 2016, the House will consider H.R. 5883, the Clarification of Treatment of Electronic Sales of Livestock Act of 2016, under suspension of the rules. H.R. 5883 was introduced on July 14, 2016, by Rep. David Rouzer (R-NC) and was referred to the Committee on Agriculture, which ordered the bill reported, as amended, by voice vote, on September 14, 2016.

Bill Summary

H.R. 5883 amends the Packets and Stockyards Act of 1921 as it relates to the buying and selling of livestock through online, video, and other electronic methods. Specifically, the legislation expands the definition of “marketing agency” to include any person who buys or sells livestock through online, video, or electronic means on a commission or other fee basis. In addition, H.R. 5882 updates the acceptable payment methods to include the electronic transfer of funds and provides the Secretary of Agriculture the flexibility to approve other new methods of payment as deemed appropriate.

Background

The Packers and Stockyards Act provides oversight and encourages fair business practices and competitive environments for the livestock, meat, and poultry markets. The Department of Agriculture’s Packers and Stockyards Program monitors programs, fosters fair competition, and provides payment protection for the livestock, meat, and poultry industries, while also protecting against deceptive and fraudulent trade practices that affect the movement and price of meat and animal products.[1]

According to the bill’s sponsor, “The Packers and Stockyards Act was written almost 100 years ago and is in need of modernization. This clarification is a reflection of changes in the marketplace as a result of modern technologies. This legislation will help ensure that our producers receive the law’s financial protections regardless of whether they sell products at a fixed-facility market or through an online or video auction.”[2]

[1] See Packers and Stockyards Program
[2] See Rep. Rouzer’s Press Release, September 14, 2016.

Cost

The Congressional Budget Office (CBO) estimates that the cost to implement H.R. 5883 would be insignificant, and any spending would be subject to the availability of appropriated funds. Enacting the legislation would not affect direct spending or revenues, therefore pay-as-you-go procedures do not apply.

Additional Information

For questions or further information please contact Jake Vreeburg with the House Republican Policy Committee by email or at 5-0190.