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Georgia Cotton Commission Referendum Underway


By: GFB News
2/14/2013 1:47:38 PM


Georgia cotton growers have until March 5 to cast their ballots in the Georgia Cotton Commission (GCC) Referendum. Under state law growers must vote every three years to determine if they want to continue the commission. For the GCC to continue, 66 2/3 of the producers who cast ballots must vote in favor of the commission.

The Georgia Department of Agriculture mailed ballots to growers in early February. Cotton producers who did not receive a ballot should contact the GDA Commodities Promotion Division at (404) 656-3678.

The commission is funded through a $1 per-bale assessment paid by all Georgia cotton growers. Funds are used to promote Georgia's cotton crop through research, education and promotional activities. The commission supports research conducted by the University of Georgia Extension Cotton Team.

Promotional activities include sponsorship of 4-H, FFA and Georgia Young Farmer programs, an educational exhibit about Georgia's cotton industry displayed at consumer and agriculture industry events, such as the Georgia National Fair, and maintenance of the GCC website,

The GCC also serves as a liaison between Georgia cotton growers and the National Cotton Council and the Southern Cotton Growers Association. These organizations represent the interests of Georgia growers in Washington, D.C.

GCC activities are overseen by five grower members - Chairman Mike Lucas of Bleckley County, Vice Chairman Wavell Robinson of Brooks County, Lee Cromley of Bulloch County, Bart Davis of Colquitt County and Marvin Ruark of Morgan County. Georgia Commissioner of Agriculture Gary Black and Georgia Farm Bureau President Zippy Duvall are ex officio members.

Lucas, who is the Bleckley County Farm Bureau president, replaced Louie Perry as chairman of the GCC. Perry's term expired in 2012.

"I feel honored to be elected chairman of the Georgia Cotton Commission. I have learned a lot about the cotton industry since I've been on the board these past several years and I like being in a position to give back to an industry that has been good to me. I will do my best as chairman to help the commission continue fulfilling its programs to the benefit of all cotton growers and the industry," Lucas said.

For more information about the GCC contact GCC Executive Director Richey Seaton via email at or by calling (478) 988-4235.


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