Bill summaries are authored by CRS.

Shown Here:
Public Law (12/21/2004)

(This measure has not been amended since it was reported to the House on October 7, 2004. The summary of that version is repeated here.)

Specialty Crops Competitiveness Act of 2004 - (Sec. 3) Defines "specialty crop" as fruits, vegetables, tree nuts, dried fruits, and nursery crops (including floriculture).

Title I: State Assistance for Specialty Crops - (Sec. 101) Directs the Secretary of Agriculture to make FY 2005 through 2009 State grants to enhance specialty crop competitiveness. Bases grant amounts on specialty crop production value. Sets minimum State grants at $100,000 per fiscal year. Authorizes FY 2005 through 2009 appropriations.

Title II: Specialty Crop Advancement - (Sec. 201) Authorizes FY 2005 through 2009 appropriations for specialty crop technical assistance under the Farm Security and Rural Investment Act of 2002.

(Sec. 202) Directs the Secretary to: (1) reduce the number of backlog permit applications for the export of agricultural commodities without diluting or diminishing existing personnel resources that are currently managing sanitary and phytosanitary issues; and (2) report annually respecting such backlog, including the number of applications and backlog applications processed to completion.

(Sec. 203) Directs the Secretary to report on the significant sanitary and phytosanitary issues affecting specialty crop exports.

Title III: Specialty Crop Research - (Sec. 301) Directs the Secretary to elevate the priority of methyl bromide alternative research and extension activities and reexamine the risks and benefits of extending the phase-out deadline. Authorizes FY 2005 through 2009 appropriations.

(Sec. 302) Amends the Food, Agriculture, Conservation, and Trade Act of 1990 to include specialty crop research among high priority research and extension activities.

(Sec. 303) Amends the National Agricultural Research, Extension, and Teaching Policy Act of 1977 to direct the National Agricultural Research, Extension, Education and Economics Advisory Board to establish a permanent specialty crops committee to study the scope of research, extension, and economics programs affecting the specialty crop industry.

Title IV: Pest and Disease Response Fund - (Sec. 401) Establishes in the Treasury the Pest and Disease Response Fund. Authorizes FY 2005 through 2009 appropriations.

(Sec. 402) Directs the Secretary to enter into an agreement with the National Plant Board for peer review of the procedures and standards of import and export requests under the Plant Protection Act, which shall address: (1) the preparation of risk assessments; and (2) the sufficiency, type, and quality of data that should be submitted to the Secretary.

(Sec. 403) Authorizes FY 2005 through 2009 appropriations for maintenance of the Agricultural Marketing Service inspection training center in Fredericksburg, Virginia.