State Board of Agricultural Research and Education


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December 14-15, 1999, Hettinger

State Board of Agricultural Research and Education
Minutes - December 14-15, 1999
Hettinger Research Extension Center, Hettinger, North Dakota


The State Board of Agricultural Research and Education met December 14, 1999 beginning at 12:50 p.m. at the Hettinger Research Extension Center in Hettinger, ND. Members attending were: Sharon Anderson, Tim Bryan, Sylvia Daws, Jerry Doan, Neal Fisher, Cole Gustafson, Jody Hauge, Maynard Helgaas, George Heller, Burdell Johnson, and Roger Johnson.

Chairman Jerry Doan called the meeting to order. Minutes of the October 4 meeting were approved as corrected.

Doan distributed copies of a report from Lori Capouch, Ag Research Fund Administrator, updating SBARE on the progress of the granting committees. Her report suggests that time could be saved by allowing each committee to publish its own call for proposals. In the call, research priorities for the particular commodity could be stated and the due date could be modified to suit growing seasons. The recommended changes were taken under consideration.

Dr. John Enz, NDSU soil science professor, made a presentation to the group on the North Dakota Agricultural Weather Network, hoping to enhance the visibility of the project. Dr. Enz has proposed establishing an NDAWN Center, which he feels would improve the probability of obtaining resources to support the development of the ag weather network. Cole Gustafson moved that SBARE go on record in support of a "center." Burdell Johnson seconded the motion, which was unanimously approved.

Sharon Anderson reported to the board on the Extension Service staffing structure, explaining the number of staff, by department or unit, serving in each area. She visited with SBARE about the current budget situation, indicating the need to find ways to reduce the salary line in the budget.

Anderson introduced David Saxowsky and Kathy Tweten, committee members serving on the Extension Program Directions Committee. They shared a compilation of responses to questions posed for recommendations of future programs in extension. The group, which will continue to meet to develop a more complete document, agreed that extension needs to maintain a local presence, continue to play a role of facilitator, and continue in an educational role.

Sharon Anderson updated SBARE on a work team established to identify and define competencies needed to be effective Extension Service workers.

Anderson shared copies of three initiatives that the Extension Service is considering for the next biennium. The potential initiatives include: The 21st Century NDSU Extension Service, Agricultural Management for Changing Times, and the Changing Face of (Rural) North Dakota Communities.

Suranjan Panigrahi, associate professor in the agricultural and biosystems engineering department, presented a proposal to the board and requested their support to create a bio-imaging center at NDSU. Following the presentation Maynard Helgaas made a motion to support the concept of establishing a bio-imaging center, with the understanding that there may be requests for support of the center in the future, but for now the center would be self-sustaining. George Heller seconded the motion, which passed unanimously.

Vern Anderson, animal scientist from the Carrington Research Extension Center, presented a proposal for support of a Bison Center of the Northern Plains. Anderson indicated the establishment of a "center" would enhance the credibility of the project and increase the opportunities to acquire external funding. Maynard Helgaas suggested the board take time to gather more information relative to economics, interest and support, and to explore opportunities for collaboration.

Cole Gustafson summarized proposed major themes of the AES budget, noting priority as restoration of operating dollars. SBARE was supportive and will plan to meet in early January to prepare strategy.

The meeting adjourned at 5:00 p.m.

The group reconvened at 8:00 a.m. December 15. Sharon Anderson talked with the board about ways the Extension Service partners with others in their program efforts. Examples of those partnerships include program efforts with: West River Medical Center, North Dakota Forest Service, Association of Counties, and the USDA.

Darnell Lundstrom presented a demographic report to the board, indicating the need to focus programs based on statistical data.

Karen Zotz provided a summary of the extension nutrition and family science programs and reviewed the programs they are currently involved with.

Following the presentations, Sharon Anderson asked SBARE members for help in deciding which program areas could be trimmed to balance budget. Discussion followed, but no recommendations were made at this time.

Cole Gustafson introduced Al Schneiter, chair of the plant sciences department and Jerry Dodd, chair of the animal and range sciences department. Dr. Schneiter updated the board on two issues facing NDSU. Schneiter indicated the GMO (genetically modified organisms) topic continues to surface. At some point, Schneiter indicated NDSU will need to establish a policy relative to issue. Schneiter also noted that the main station continues to lose research plot land to other campus and city projects. There have been discussions with NDSU administrators working to develop options acceptable to NDSU researchers who will be effected.

Jerry Dodd updated SBARE on the Grasslands Management Plan, indicating he and other NDSU scientists have been working on evaluation of North Dakota grasslands at the governor's request. The project has been somewhat controversial, but the scientists are striving to provide clients with good, objective, technical information.

Tim Faller, Hettinger Research Center director; Chip Poland, extension specialist at the Dickinson Research Extension Center and Fran Dobitz, a southwest North Dakota producer, presented a proposal for a Southwest Feeders Project. They are hopeful the project would promote value-added economic development in southwestern North Dakota by involving production systems that utilize locally-produced feedstuffs, calves and lambs. Discussion followed with no action taken.

Cole Gustafson asked the board to consider going on record in support of the Bison Center concept, stating it would be important to have SBARE support as project work continues. Roger Johnson moved to endorse the concept of the center. Sylvia Daws seconded the motion, which passed unanimously.

Prior to adjournment, the board discussed meeting schedules for the next year. Jody Hauge made a motion to select the last Monday of the month as a designated meeting date beginning after SBARE presentation to the State Board of Higher Education in February. Neal Fisher seconded the motion, which passed unanimously.

The meeting was adjourned at noon.

Recorded by Margaret Olson

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