7 USC 1736a - Administrative provisions

(a) Subchapter II programs 

(1) Acquisitions 
The importing country or private entity that enters into an agreement under subchapter II of this chapter shall acquire the agricultural commodities to be financed under subchapter II of this chapter.
(2) Invitation for bid 
No purchase of agricultural commodities from private stock or purchase of ocean transportation shall be financed under subchapter II of this chapter unless such purchases are made on the basis of an invitation for bid that is publicly advertised in the United States, and on the basis of bid offerings that shall conform to such invitation and be received and publicly opened in the United States. All awards in the purchase of commodities or ocean transportation financed under subchapter II of this chapter shall be consistent with open, competitive, and responsive bid procedures, as determined appropriate by the Secretary. Resulting contracts may contain such terms and conditions as the Secretary determines are necessary and appropriate.
(b) Agents 


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(1) Authority of Secretary or Commodity Credit Corporation 

(A) General rule 
Except as provided in subparagraph (B), if it is determined appropriate, the Secretary or the Commodity Credit Corporation may serve as the purchasing or shipping agent, or both, for the importer or importing country in arranging the purchase or shipping of commodities financed under subchapter II of this chapter.
(B) Exception 
Notwithstanding subparagraph (A), the Secretary or the Commodity Credit Corporation may award, under a competitive bidding process, contracts for establishing freight agents who shall act on behalf of the Secretary or the Corporation to handle the shipping of commodities financed under this chapter.
(C) Avoidance of conflict of interest of contractors 
Freight agents employed by the Secretary or the Commodity Credit Corporation under subchapter II of this chapter shall not represent any foreign government during the period of their contract with the United States Government.
(2) Reasonable fees and commissions 

(A) Fees 
Notwithstanding any other provision of law, the Secretary or the Commodity Credit Corporation may enter into an agreement with the importer or importing country that contains the terms and conditions that will govern the provision of purchasing or shipping agent services by the Secretary or the Corporation, including the establishment of fees for such services. Any such fees shall be fair and reasonable in relation to the services performed and shall be available as reimbursement for costs incurred in providing such services.
(B) Prohibition on commissions 
Commissions, fees, or other payments to any selling agent or to any agent of a purchaser shall be prohibited in the purchase of agricultural commodities that are financed under subchapter II of this chapter.
(3) Limitations 
No commission, fees, or other payments to an agent, broker, consultant, or other representative of the importer or importing country for ocean transportation brokerage services in connection with the carriage of commodities provided under subchapter II of this chapter may
(A) be paid in excess of an amount determined appropriate by the Secretary; and
(B) be shared by such person with the importer or importing country or any agent thereof.

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(4) Avoidance of conflict of interest 
A person may not be an agent, broker, consultant, or other representative of the United States Government, an importer, or an importing country in connection with agricultural commodities provided under this chapter during a fiscal year in which such person provides or acts as an agent, broker, consultant, or other representative of a person engaged in providing ocean transportation or transportation-related services for such commodities. For the purpose of this paragraph, the term transportation-related services means lightening, stevedoring, bagging, or inland transportation to the destination point.
(c) Subchapters III and III–A program 

(1) Acquisition 

(A) In general 
The Administrator shall transfer, arrange for the transportation, and take other steps necessary to make available agricultural commodities to be provided under subchapter III and subchapter IIIA of this chapter.
(B) Certain commodities made available for nonemergency assistance 
In the case of agricultural commodities made available for nonemergency assistance under subchapter III of this chapter for least developed countries that meet the poverty and other eligibility criteria established by the International Bank for Reconstruction and Development for financing under the International Development Association, the Administrator may pay the transportation costs incurred in moving the agricultural commodities from designated points of entry or ports of entry abroad to storage and distribution sites and associated storage and distribution costs.
(2) Freight procurement 
Notwithstanding the Federal Property and Administrative Services Act of 1949[1] or other similar provisions of law relating to the making or performance of Federal Government contracts, ocean transportation under subchapters III and IIIA of this chapter may be procured on the basis of full and open competitive procedures. Resulting contracts may contain such terms and conditions as the Administrator determines are necessary and appropriate.
(3) Avoidance of conflict of interest 
Freight agents employed by the Agency for International Development under subchapters III and IIIA of this chapter shall not represent any foreign government during the period of their contract with the United States Government.
(4) Prepositioning 

(A) In general 
Funds made available for fiscal years 2001 through 2012 to carry out subchapters III and III-A of this chapter may be used by the Administrator to procure, transport, and store agricultural commodities for prepositioning within the United States and in foreign countries, except that for each such fiscal year not more than $10,000,000 of such funds may be used to store agricultural commodities for prepositioning in foreign countries.
(B) Additional prepositioning sites 

(i) Feasibility assessments The Administrator may carry out assessments for the establishment of not less than 2 sites to determine the feasibility of, and costs associated with, using the sites to store and handle agricultural commodities for prepositioning in foreign countries.
(ii) Establishment of sites Based on the results of each assessment carried out under clause (i), the Administrator may establish additional sites for prepositioning in foreign countries.
(5) Nonemergency or multiyear agreements 
Annual resource requests for ongoing nonemergency or ongoing multiyear agreements under subchapter III shall be finalized not later than October 1 of the fiscal year in which the agricultural commodities will be shipped under the agreement.
(d) Timing of shipments 
In determining the timing of the shipment of agricultural commodities to be provided under this chapter, the Secretary or the Administrator, as appropriate, shall consider
(1) the time of harvest of any competing commodities in the recipient country; and
(2) such other concerns determined to be appropriate.
(e) Deadline for agreements under subchapters II and III–A of this chapter 
An agreement under subchapters II and IIIA of this chapter shall, to the extent practicable, be entered into not later than
(1) November 30 of the first fiscal year in which agricultural commodities are to be shipped under the agreement; or
(2) 60 days after the date of enactment of the annual Rural Development, Agriculture, and Related Agencies Appropriations Act for the first fiscal year in which agricultural commodities are to be shipped under the agreement,

whichever is later.

(f) Annual reports 

(1) Annual report regarding agricultural trade programs and activities 

(A) Annual report 
Not later than April 1 of each fiscal year, the Administrator and the Secretary shall jointly prepare and submit to the appropriate committees of Congress a report regarding each program and activity carried out under this chapter during the prior fiscal year.
(B) Contents 
An annual report described in subparagraph (A) shall include, with respect to the prior fiscal year
(i) a list that contains a description of each country and organization that receives food and other assistance under this chapter (including the quantity of food and assistance provided to each country and organization);
(ii) a general description of each project and activity implemented under this chapter (including each activity funded through the use of local currencies);
(iii) a statement describing the quantity of agricultural commodities made available to each country pursuant to
(I) section 1431 (b) of this title; and
(II) the Food for Progress Act of 1985 (7 U.S.C. 1736o);
(iv) an assessment of the progress made through programs under this chapter towards reducing food insecurity in the populations receiving food assistance from the United States;
(v) a description of efforts undertaken by the Food Aid Consultative Group under section 1725 of this title to achieve an integrated and effective food assistance program;
(vi) an assessment of
(I) each program oversight, monitoring, and evaluation system implemented under section 1726a (f) of this title; and
(II) the impact of each program oversight, monitoring, and evaluation system on the effectiveness and efficiency of assistance provided under this subchapter; and
(vii) an assessment of the progress made by the Administrator in addressing issues relating to quality with respect to the provision of food assistance.
(2) Annual report regarding the provision of agricultural commodities to foreign countries 

(A) Annual report 
Not later than February 1 of each fiscal year, the Administrator shall prepare and submit to the appropriate committees of Congress a report regarding the administration of food assistance programs under subchapter III to benefit foreign countries during the prior fiscal year.
(B) Contents 
An annual report described in subparagraph (A) shall include, with respect to the prior fiscal year
(i) a list that contains a description of each program, country, and commodity approved for assistance under section 1726a of this title; and
(ii) a statement that contains a description of the total amount of funds approved for transportation and administrative costs under section 1726a of this title.
[1] See References in Text note below.