State Board of Agricultural Research and Education

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December 16, 2002, Fargo

State Board of Agricultural Research and Education
Minutes - December 16, 2002
NDSU Alumni Center - Fargo, ND

The State Board of Agricultural Research and Education met in Fargo, North Dakota at the NDSU Alumni Center on December 16, 2002 beginning at 10:00 a.m. Members present were: Sharon Anderson, Tom Archbold, Keith Bjerke (for Joseph Chapman), Tim Bryan, Jerry Doan, Neal Fisher, Ed Goerger, Carol Goodman, Ken Grafton, Jody Hauge, Patricia Jensen, Burdell Johnson, Vern Mayer and Phil Mueller.

Chairman Doan called the meeting to order. Following introductions, the minutes of the September 30, 2002 meeting were approved as distributed.

Lori Capouch, administrator for the Agricultural Research Fund, asked the board to clarify allowable use of research funds designated for hay research. She said the animal agriculture granting committee has allocated "hay" dollars for "livestock" research when appropriate hay proposals were not received. After discussion, Jody Hauge made a motion to support the granting committee's recommendations and include a hay grower/producer on the committee. Neal Fisher seconded the motion, which passed unanimously.

jerry Doan stated that several members of the Ag Coalition were asked if they would be in favor of additional fuel tax to increase funding in the Agricultural Research Fund, but there was not much support.

Don Hanson gave an agriculture facilities report stating:

  • The Carrington Feedmill is under construction and plans are to have it enclosed by the end of the year. The Barley Council has donated three bins on site.
  • The Langdon Learning Facility bids came in November within the authorization. Contracts are being prepared, will be forwarded to NDSU for approval, and construction should begin in the spring.
  • A greenhouse users group was established on campus to determine research needs into the future. The committee prepared a plan that was given to a local architectural firm and they prepared a proposal. Hanson shared a copy with SBARE members.

Hanson asked SBARE to provide a resolution in support of the proposed greenhouse project. He said he would like to ask the State Board Higher Education for approval to begin talks with potential funding sources. Following considerable discussion about greenhouse proposal, Neal Fisher made a motion to ask the SBARE Crops Subcommittee to look at the proposal to see how it fits in the overall plan for agricultural research at NDSU. Ed Goerger seconded the motion.

Some board members disagreed with deferring to the subcommittee, stating they did not believe there was anything more to offer and it would only delay progress. Some members said the most important issue was to get a good solid plan in place and to provide information supporting the effort. Fisher withdrew his motion.

Tim Bryan made a motion to encourage NDSU agriculture to ask the State Board of Higher Education for approval to have discussions about funding the greenhouse project from various sources. Neal Fisher seconded the motion, which passed.

The board talked about special projects at research extension centers and how center directors should proceed with their plans. Jay Fisher and Paul Nyren both indicated they would like to have discussions with advisory boards and others about plans for their centers, but do not have a clear idea of how the projects fit in the priorities and when to explore funding opportunities. Tim Bryan suggested a planning session with SBARE subcommittee chairs noting all areas should be involved in the process.

Jerry Doan distributed copies of the agriculture executive budget and stressed the importance of OMB allowing flexibility in managing the budget. He suggested the budget subcommittee meet over lunch and discuss strategy to have a strong plan in place for the legislative session.

The following comments were made with regard to the budget:

  • Doan stated if SBARE is going to support funding for western malting barley and the Carrington feedlot, everyone needs to updated, informed and headed in the same direction.
  • Sharon Anderson stressed the seriousness of a 95% budget noting that positions will be off the books.
  • Jody Hauge stressed the importance of filling critical positions when vacancies occur.
  • Jerry Bergman expressed concern with the assessment for internet access currently charged to each research extension center, stating he felt the amount was too high.

Following a lunch break, Marie Hvidsten, rural leadership specialist, talked with the group about her plan for the North Dakota Rural Leadership program and asked for their suggestions and advice.

Al Schneiter stated that the NDSU GMO protocol document has been distributed and discussed at many events and meetings these past months. He said it has helped to calm a lot of issues. Lynn Wolff, Dakota Resource Council, stated the council is pleased with the efforts so far, but continues to be concerned with problems relating to segregation and marketing.

Neal Fisher made a motion that SBARE approve the GMO protocol document as presented. Vern Mayer seconded the motion which passed.

Patricia Jensen provided the following information to board members:

  • The State Board of Higher Education audit committee has scheduled a conference call December 17 to discuss the sheep audit. The operations manual is in final form and will provide written protocol for the main station.
  • David Olson has accepted the position as equine director and will start at NDSU in January.
  • The position of chair in animal and range sciences has been offered to Kenneth Odde and positive discussions are taking place.
  • Although reports for external funding (prepared by NDSU Sponsored Programs Administration) show a decrease in awards in agriculture, those resources have actually remained steady. Timing issues in Congress prevented some federal earmark dollars from being included in the report.

Sharon Anderson indicated this is a busy time for the Extension Service, noting activity in the Beef Quality Assurance program, thriving marketing clubs, revival of the communication arts, and lots of work in the areas of biotechnology, pesticide certification and drought issues. She stated that the chief of NRCS met with the North Dakota conservation group and cited North Dakota as an example of how partnerships can work. Anderson also told board members that there is a meeting scheduled soon to discuss long- term plans to capitalize on the Western 4-H Camp located near Washburn, North Dakota.

Ken Grafton talked with board members about the need to work out a plan for the Nestle durum mill and how it fits in the overall research plan. He stated he has asked college department chairs and research extension center directors to provide impact statements for use during the upcoming legislative session. Grafton also noted that the Dickinson Research Extension Center is evaluating the possibility of becoming a sustainable ag research center in the state.

Patricia Berglund, NCI director, told board members she is pleased overall with the governor's budget recommendation; however, the utility budget for the NCI feedmill was not included and she plans to meet with Ken Grafton to discuss possible solutions.

Keith Bjerke reported that NDSU will develop a web page where he plans to provide current information relating to NDSU's 2003 legislative affairs.

Don Kirby reported to SBARE that NDSU is involved in a collaborative grant with Washington as a result of the scrapie outbreak. The research is being done with hopes of developing a quick, live animal test at a reasonable cost. Burdell Johnson added that the research being conducted will be used not only nationally, but internationally.

Blaine Schatz reminded board members about the importance of developing a risk management program for the research extension centers. Vice President Jensen indicated she would put an evaluation working group together to address those needs.

The meeting adjourned at 3:50 p.m.

Recorded by Margaret Olson

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