State Board of Agricultural Research and Education


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December 13-14, 2004, Fargo

State Board of Agricultural Research and Education
Minutes – December 13-14, 2004
NDSU Memorial Union  – Fargo, ND

The State Board of Agricultural Research and Education met at NDSU in the Memorial Union beginning at 1:00 p.m. on December 13, 2004.  Members present: Ole Aarsvold, Tom Archbold, Keith Bjerke (for Joseph Chapman), John Bollingberg, Jerry Doan, Jerry Effertz, Ed Goerger, Carol Goodman, Ken Grafton, Duane Hauck, Rodney Howe, Patricia Jensen, Burdell Johnson and Roger Johnson.

Minutes of the November 30, 2004 meeting were approved as distributed.

Ken Grafton and Duane Hauck distributed handouts and talked about budget impacts and progress since last legislative session.

Chair Tom Archbold handed out copies of the Governor’s 2005-07 budget guidelines and summarized effects on agriculture before he invited discussion on legislative budget strategies.

Patricia Jensen joined the meeting and talked about potential cuts in federal funding for NDSU agriculture and the impact of the cuts.

Archbold thanked Jensen for her dedication and service to SBARE, noting this would be her last meeting before her retirement December 31.

Archbold stated that the Governor’s budget recommendation included 2.2% for costs to continue, which is a much better starting point than in past years.  He added that it is anticipated there will be many funding requests from various agencies and agriculture must work hard to get a fair share.

Ken Grafton indicated that the budget recommendation included support for the NDSU greenhouse project, adding that he has talked with Larry Chandler and Will Blackburn from the Agricultural Research Service, and they have expressed interest in partnering on the project.  Grafton also told SBARE members that he has visited with the NDSU Vice President for Research about a federal earmark request.

Board members discussed SBARE’s priorities and some expressed concern with a recommendation for increased funding authority for the North Central Research Extension Center and the fact that no support was included for the Central Grasslands Research Extension Center at Streeter.  Jerry Doan suggested asking for at least $100,000 in bonding for Streeter to get started.  Paul Nyren stated he would be happy to try to raise some funds locally, but he wasn’t sure how successful he could be.  He added that to increase staff and funding, there is a real need to support the infrastructure at Streeter.

Roger Johnson reminded SBARE members that it is dangerous to make changes after going through the priority setting process.  Rodney Howe agreed that for SBARE to maintain credibility, board members need to continue to support priorities as submitted.  Jerry Doan reminded board members that the Legislature has given SBARE flexibility in the past and it has worked well.

At this time, board members were invited to tour the new Biosecurity Program Mobile Unit, a collaborative project between NDSU and Dickinson, supported with federal funds.  A press conference followed.

SBARE members reconvened and continued budget/priority discussions.  They agreed to support the bonding authority recommendation for the NDSU greenhouse project and new headquarters building at the Central Grasslands Research Extension Center, as included in the Governor’s recommendation, and also to cautiously support the North Central Research Extension Center Agronomy Lab and Greenhouse project.

Kris Ringwall updated the board on progress of the building project at Dickinson, noting that the county will not provide any funding support, plans have not changed, and they may need to request an authorization extension from the Legislature.

The meeting adjourned for the day at 4:30 p.m. and reconvened at 8:00 a.m. on Tuesday, December 14 in the Memorial Union.

Chair Tom Archbold welcomed President Joseph Chapman.  Chapman gave an overview of the past year, telling SBARE that NDSU has truly become a university of choice.  He added there has been tremendous growth in the past five years and administrators are working to manage it.

Chapman talked specifically about NDSU agriculture and Vice President Jensen’s December 31 retirement.  He told board members that he has visited with many people across the state about the best organizational structure for agriculture and wants to create the best possible model to empower leaders.

President Chapman told SBARE members that a big issue with the Legislature this session will be equity among state institutions.  He added that NDSU plans to work actively on the issue.

Chapman stated that the title for the new vice president for agriculture will include “and university extension.”  The individual will be expected to work with all college deans to bring a more institutional portfolio outstate.

Tom Archbold talked about a perception of expansion of extension at the expense of agriculture and stressed to board members that the concern is not valid.  Rodney Howe added that there is a real need to enhance extension.

President Chapman told the board that he has no examples of negative impacts, stating that a great land-grant university or a great state can’t be great without a great agriculture.  He said agriculture is fundamentally a part of who we are and we need to serve all people.

Carol Goodman stated that this is a unique opportunity for community engagement across the state.  She added that there is a need to move forward with a mission of agricultural presence in the state and the economic development piece continues to get stronger.

Chairman Archbold returned to conversation about the upcoming legislative session and SBARE priorities, suggesting support for the listing of priorities as presented.  Ed Goerger agreed and said the same process should be followed with capital improvement projects, noting strong support for the North Central Research Extension Center efforts, but sticking with greenhouses and the Central Grasslands project as highest priorities.

Tom Archbold requested a summary of “talking points” from NDSU ag administrators to be used by SBARE to promote priorities during the legislative session.

SBARE members talked about ongoing budgets and the need for increased funding for research to maintain a balance between state contributions and private funds.  Duane Hauck noted that it is imperative that the state provide support for research and extension and added that you can’t run agencies on grant funds.

Roger Johnson suggested that program priorities in the budget that are restorations be annotated as such.

Ole Aarsvold told SBARE that a legislative subcommittee will be created to work on state efficiency and the committee may review budgets, challenging all state agencies.

Burdell Johnson asked how much involvement will be expected from SBARE members at the Legislature and Tom Archbold responded that it would depend on how things go and what the legislative committees want.  He added that updates will be provided to board members regarding session business.

Carol Goodman reminded the board that it is going to be important during the transition of SBARE membership for members to maintain the strength of the initial group.  She added that it is also important to bring research and extension forward on an equal playing field.  Goodman said she did not mean to diminish the importance of research, but noted that if there are not outstate communities to take advantage of it, research won’t be needed, adding SBARE needs to explore ways to become strong and cohesive, and responsive to needs.

Tom Archbold stated that SBARE needs to defend needs/top priorities and research and extension really can’t be equal.  Duane Hauck suggested that when the broader extension is added to vice president’s responsibilities, it may be appropriate for SBARE to revisit its purpose statement to include a clearer role and function for extension.

Jerry Effertz agreed with Goodman, stating the ability to have the commitment and dedication of the original SBARE will be an enormous challenge.  He recommended getting all board members more directly involved.

Goodman said it is important to speak in one voice and that credibility comes with sticking with the process and emphasizing top priorities, but she added that SBARE should talk about the impact of the entire list of needs.

Tom Archbold mentioned that SBARE may need to return to a better ranking process for setting priorities.

Board members discussed the SBARE voting process and Burdell Johnson mentioned that he felt the Vice President for Agriculture should have voting rights on SBARE.  Relative to the discussion, Burdell Johnson made a motion that Tom Archbold visit with President Chapman to suggest that his SBARE designee be the Vice President for Agriculture and that individual would carry his voting right.  John Bollingberg seconded the motion.   Roger Johnson suggested that it would be inappropriate to make such a request and following more discussion, Burdell Johnson withdrew his motion.

Jerry Effertz stated that he did not support two “NDSU administrative “ votes on the board.  Other board members disagreed and following discussion John Bollingberg made a motion that a request for voting rights for the new vice president be requested.  Ed Goerger seconded the motion which was defeated.

The meeting adjourned at 11:05 a.m.

Recorded by Margaret Olson

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