Tart Cherry Growers, Cast Your Vote

Wisconsin tart cherry growers have until Jan. 24, 2015, to vote whether to decrease the size of their industry’s marketing order board. Cherry growers eligible to vote will get ballots from the Wisconsin Department of Agriculture, Trade and Consumer Protection in the mail on or after Dec. 29. Voters will determine by referendum whether to reduce the size of the Wisconsin Cherry Board from seven members to five.

The proposed rule also would eliminate voting districts for the cherry board. On the current seven-member board structure, three members represent each of the state’s two cherry-growing districts. The seventh board member represents the industry at-large. The proposed rule would change the structure to five members elected at-large.

Each voter must complete a ballot and sign it before returning it to DATCP. Completed ballots must be postmarked by Jan. 24, 2015. Unmarked or unsigned ballots will not be counted. At least half of eligible cherry growers must vote for the referendum to be valid; of those who vote, at least half must vote “yes” for the referendum to pass. If you are an eligible cherry grower and do not receive a ballot by Jan. 2, 2015, or if you have questions about the referendum contact DATCP’s Stacie Ashby at 608.224.5116 or [email protected].