(1) Assessments shall be collected by the department or its agent and deposited in the State Treasury to the credit of the Plant Industry Trust Fund. Except as otherwise provided herein, upon appropriation by the Legislature, all moneys received under the provisions of this section shall be remitted to the certified growers’ organization subject to such terms and conditions as the department, after consultation with the board of directors of the cotton growers’ organization, prescribes to ensure that the assessments are used in a sound program of boll weevil suppression and eradication.
(2)(a) All assessments shall be levied on a per acre basis.
(b) Upon recommendation by the board of directors of the cotton growers’ organization, the department shall establish a per acre assessment, the period for which it will be levied, and the geographical area to which it applies.
(c) The assessment shall not exceed $35 per acre per year.
(3) If any assessment made under this chapter to defray the whole or any part of the expense of any eradication or suppression program is either in whole or in part annulled, vacated, or set aside by the judgment of any court, or if the department is satisfied that any such assessment is so irregular or defective that the same cannot be enforced or collected, or if the department fails to make such assessment when it might have done so, the department shall take all necessary steps to cause a new assessment to be made for the whole or any part of the cost of any eradication or suppression program, following as nearly as possible the provisions of this chapter, and, in case such second assessment is annulled, the department may obtain and make other assessments until a valid assessment is made.
(4) A commercial cotton grower who fails to pay any assessment levied under this chapter by the applicable due date shall be subject to interest on the unpaid assessment at the rate set forth in chapter 55. Such interest shall accrue from the date the assessment was due until payment.