State Board of Agricultural Research and Education


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March 5, 2010, Bismarck

State Board of Agricultural Research and Education
Approved Minutes – March 5, 2010
Bismarck, North Dakota

The State Board of Agricultural Research and Education met at the Ramkota Hotel in Bismarck, ND, beginning at 8 a.m. on March 5, 2010.  Members present were John Bollingberg, Tom Borgen, D.C. Coston, Jerry Effertz, Doug Goehring, Carol Goodman, Ken Grafton, Duane Hauck, Rodney Howe, Doyle Johannes, Jim Kerzman, Paul Langseth, Larry Lee, and Doyle Lentz.

Chair Rodney Howe called the meeting to order and made introductions.  Minutes of the February 18-19, 2010 meeting were approved as distributed.

Chairman Howe talked about the relationship between SBARE and the SBHE/University System Office, indicating there is a good rapport.  He noted that SBARE is a separate entity and is not a subsidiary of NDSU, and that needs to always be considered in the budget process.  Howe added that the chancellor has been as accommodating as he can be.

Howe reported that SBARE will be making the following reports:  March 11 to the Legislative Budget Section; March 26 to the Chancellor; and April 8 to the State Board of Higher Education.

Howe indicated he has been asked by the Agricultural Research Fund administrator to review the process of funding multiple year projects, and to possibly make some changes to the current policy.

D.C. Coston told SBARE members that he had accompanied President Hanson on several statewide visits with area groups/legislators and the visits were positive.

Ken Grafton announced that David Saxowsky has stepped down as chair of Agribusiness and Applied Economics.

Duane Hauck reported that county Extension offices across the state are hosting reporting sessions with county commissioners and local legislators and the results have been good; NDSU Extension is gearing up for potential flooding; and NDSU Extension is a partner in the hunger-free garden project, which encourages donations of produce to food pantries.

In discussing the preliminary ranking of research and Extension initiatives, Howe reminded board members that the summary was prepared by Ag Administration per SBARE request and is an overview of what has been heard from stakeholders over the past months.

Howe said that the Animal Welfare/Rights initiative needs clarification and reminded the board that laws affecting animal welfare are being pushed very hard nationally and it is important to be ready to respond.

Greg Lardy, head of animal sciences, told SBARE that the title of the animal welfare initiative should be changed to “Livestock Stewardship” to more accurately describe the initiative, stressing that it is not a biosecurity effort and is driven at the producer/consumer level.

Julie Ellingson, executive director of the North Dakota Stockmen’s Association, agreed that the initiative is one that will enhance stewardship practices and provide education.

Rodney Howe questioned whether there should be a research component to the livestock stewardship initiative and Duane Hauck responded that this request is from Extension, but there could be a research piece added if needed.  Lardy suggested the position could help dispel myths and provide education about humane practices.

Jerry Effertz invited Mark Birdsall, representative of the North Dakota Crop Improvement Association, to speak to SBARE in support of updating seed cleaning facilities at the North Central Research Extension Center.  Birdsall reviewed the perceived flaws in the current facility and strongly urged consideration for an updated facility in the prioritization process.

Jim Kerzman cautioned about infringing on private sector businesses relative to seed conditioning.  Ken Grafton reminded SBARE that one of the responsibilities of the agricultural experiment station is to produce foundation seed and a statewide demand has made the Agronomy Seed Farm unable to meet the needs.

Tom Borgen talked with board members about the importance of considering funding for a canola breeder, stating it is essential to continue production of the high-value crop in North Dakota.

Sheri Coleman, associate director of the Northern Canola Growers Association, told SBARE the canola program could end July 1 without additional funding.  She indicated that there have been two canola varieties released in only five years and she encouraged board members to support the program and associated needs. 

Duane Hauck and Ken Grafton summarized the updates/changes made to the initiatives list since the last meeting and members discussed how to proceed with the initiative priority process.

Chairman Howe reminded the board that Chancellor Goetz told SBARE to submit a list of “needs” and did not provide a percentage to work with. 

Following discussions, it was agreed that the ballot would be reordered and updated with additional suggestions/changes and board members would reconvene after lunch for further review.

After the lunch break, the board reconvened, reviewed the rankings and talked about how to proceed with the information.

Duane Hauck shared one-time funding requests for the Extension Service that included:

support for a learning/conference center at the Washburn 4-H camp site, funding to update 20 video conference sites, funding to update necessary land tax modeling software, and additional funding for the Soil Conservation Service. Following discussions, board members had no objections or concerns regarding the requests.

After discussing dollars associated with the experiment station initiative rankings, Larry Lee made a motion to approve the list as presented.  Paul Langseth seconded the motion, which passed.

Ken Grafton talked about the capital improvement project list which includes funding for the greenhouse project; agronomy labs at Carrington, Hettinger, Langdon and Minot; and seed cleaning plants at Minot, Carrington, Williston and Langdon.

Board members discussed the dollar amounts associated with each of the projects and some concern was expressed about the high costs presented for the seed conditioning plants.  Following considerable discussion regarding the proposed capital projects, John Bollingberg made a motion that SBARE members review the projected costs and be presented with more specific detail about the finances at the March 26 meeting.  Paul Langseth seconded the motion, which passed. 
Jerry Effertz asked to go on record commending Dave Ruhland and Cindy Rott, from the Agriculture Budget Office, for the outstanding work they have done this day in providing budget information to board members on site.

After discussing the NDSU presidential search, Carol Goodman made a motion that SBARE send a letter to the search committee reminding them of the importance of the land grant mission to NDSU agriculture.  Jim Kerzman seconded the motion, which passed.

Rodney Howe reported that the initial format is complete for the vice president’s evaluation, adding that the intent of the process is to promote positive growth.

With plans to meet again on March 26, the meeting adjourned at 2:45 p.m.

Recorded by Margaret Olson


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