Upon the request of the certified cotton growers’ organization, the department shall conduct a referendum among all cotton growers in an eradication zone to determine whether an assessment shall be levied upon them to cover, in whole or in part, the cost of boll weevil suppression and eradication programs authorized by ss. 593.101-593.117. Subsequent referenda to determine changes in assessments or program activities shall be conducted by the department upon the request of the certified cotton growers’ organization. All referenda are subject to the following conditions:
(1) All affected commercial cotton growers must be entitled to vote, and any question of eligibility must be determined by the department.
(2) At least 51 percent of the commercial cotton growers in the eradication zone must be required to vote, and passage of the referendum must require a two-thirds majority of those growers voting.