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4Levy for Commission's expenses.N.I.

(1 )F1For the purpose of defraying the expenses of the Commission, the Ministry may, on the recommendation of the Commission, make regulations providing for the imposition of a levy, to be collected by or on behalf of the Commission, in respect of all livestock slaughtered in or sent out of Northern Ireland, but so that the levy shall not exceed[F2 £1.00] for each sheep, …F3 and[F2 £6.00] for each bovine animal.

(2)A levy under this section shall be imposed only on—

(a)the owners of any livestock slaughtered or the owners of any livestock immediately before they are sent out of Northern Ireland; or

(b)other persons engaged in the production, marketing or distribution of livestock or livestock products.

(3)Regulations made under subsection (1) may include—

(a)provisions as to the persons by whom any levy under subsection (1) is to be paid or collected;

(b)provisions requiring persons slaughtering livestock or carrying or sending out of Northern Ireland any livestock to keep such records and to make such returns as may be specified in the regulations.

(4)Regulations made under subsection (1) may include provisions making persons guilty of an offence where there is a contravention of the regulations, and for the imposition of penalties on summary conviction of any such offence, but so that a maximum fine and a maximum term of imprisonment specified in the regulations shall not exceed[F4 level 3 on the standard scale] and three months, respectively.

(5)Returns or other information furnished or obtained by any person in pursuance of regulations made under subsection (1) shall not be disclosed except—

(a)with the consent of the person by whom the information was furnished;

(b)to a member, officer or servant of the Commission;

(c)to an officer of the Ministry;

(d)in the form of a summary of similar information, so framed that particulars relating to any one person cannot be obtained from it;

(e)for the purpose of any criminal proceedings or report of such proceedings;

and any person who contravenes this subsection shall be guilty of an offence and liable on summary conviction to a fine not exceeding[F4 level 3 on the standard scale] or to imprisonment for a term not exceeding six months.

(6)No levy shall be imposed under this section in respect of any livestock slaughtered under the[F5 Diseases of Animals (Northern Ireland) Order 1981] or any order made thereunder.

(7)The Ministry may by regulations made subject to affirmative resolution vary the sums specified in subsection (1).

(8)Regulations made under subsection (1) shall be subject to negative resolution.