State Board of Agricultural Research and Education


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February 3, 2012, Mandan

State Board of Agricultural Research and Education
Approved Minutes – February 3, 2012
Seven Seas - Mandan, ND

The State Board of Agricultural Research and Education met at the Seven Seas in Mandan, ND beginning at 9 a.m. on February 3.  Members present were Robert Bahm, Mike Beltz, Chris Boerboom, John Bollingberg, Tom Borgen, President Bresciani (conference phone), Doug Goehring, Ken Grafton, Rodney Howe, Jerry Klein, Paul Langseth, Doyle Lentz, and JoAnn Rodenbiker.

Chairman Howe called the meeting to order, made introductions, and asked for changes/additions to the agenda.  Minutes of the January 6, 2012, SBARE meeting were approved as distributed.

Mike Hanson, Extension district director, reported on progress with the search for a new Extension director, noting that two candidates will be interviewed during February.

Howe reported that SBARE is scheduled to present their initiative rankings to the State Board of Higher Education on April 12.

Ken Grafton reported that Dr. Sreekala Bajwa, new chair in agricultural and biosystems engineering, will be joining NDSU the end of February; a search for director of the School of Natural Resource Sciences is in progress; and the search for a director of the Central Grasslands Research Extension Center will commence in February.  Searches for a part-time assistant dean and an associate dean for academic programs are also ongoing.

Dan Wogsland, executive director for the North Dakota Grain Growers, reminded SBARE to thoughtfully consider support for the Center for Ag Policy and Trade Studies as they deliberate their initiative rankings.  He added that the Center is critically important to North Dakota agriculture.

Chairman Howe reported that Jerry Doan, Central Grasslands Research Extension Center Advisory Board chair, asked that he remind SBARE to carefully consider needs requested by the Central Grasslands REC, particularly the need for an agronomy lab and a forage agronomist.

Howe distributed the preliminary initiative rankings as tabulated by Ag Budget Office and told SBARE that he feels the list needs to be cut down to be more palatable.  John Bollingberg reminded his colleagues that the budget process for SBARE is different than the planning process for higher education and said that their responsibility is to present a needs list and board members should keep this in mind as they prepare their initiative proposals.

Howe told SBARE members that he wants input from each and every member so the board moves forward very unified.  He added that it is imperative that SBARE present an efficient model and it is the board’s responsibility to prepare and present a justifiable set of needs.

Doug Goehring and Jerry Klein both stressed that SBARE is well respected and understood by the Legislature and that the SBARE process works very well for the number one industry in the state.

Paul Langseth suggested trimming FTE’s to fulfill real needs.  He also suggested listing items not ranked highest on the ranking as “future needs.”

Chris Boerboom reviewed the list of Extension initiatives and told SBARE that in checking with several other state agencies about some potentially similar programs, the Extension Service is confident that efforts would not be duplicated.

Boerboom reported that the soil health searches are all progressing well; three interviews are set for livestock stewardship position; the Extension director search is in interview stage; a committee is screening for bioenergy economist; and a search for the state specialist working with potatoes is in process.

Boerboom told SBARE that he recently attended a press conference regarding “Measure 2” and there was a large group of participants.  He noted that the Extension Service has an interest in the outcome of the June 12 vote because of all of the joint funded work with counties.  He encouraged board members to be informed.

Rodney Howe indicated that the House Appropriations Committee asked SBARE to recommend a funding mechanism for the issue related to Dickinson oil revenues.  Dave Ruhland, Ag Budget Director, and staff from the Office of Management and Budget are working with Dickinson to project the amount needed.

Board members discussed the Extension initiatives presented by Boerboom with considerable time spent talking about the challenges with housing and living costs in western North Dakota.  Rather than include an initiative to address the challenges, board members agreed to recognize the importance and express extreme concern to State Board of Higher Education and state legislators.

Paul Langseth provided additional information collected in an effort to clarify costs and options for seed cleaning facilities at Williston, Minot, Carrington, and Langdon Research Extension Centers.  Howe acknowledged Langseth’s efforts and noted that with the information received, SBARE has done due diligence.  Board members applauded Langseth’s work studying, gathering and sharing the information.

Following a break for lunch, SBARE listened as Ken Grafton reviewed the AES initiatives and more discussion took place about the best way to package and present the initiatives.

Board members discussed how to proceed with the ranking process agreeing to prepare and submit another ranking during the day’s meeting.

While ballots were being prepared, Chris Boerboom and Ken Grafton reviewed their capital project requests.  Grafton reported that the research Extension center directors voted unanimously to support the top three capital projects as ranked: agronomy labs, seed cleaning facilities, and livestock facilities.

Chris Schauer and Jay Fisher talked with SBARE about the lack of housing available for graduate students at the REC’s and implications of the shortages.  The directors suggested that because of the ownership of the land, there may be opportunity for some unique solutions.

SBARE rankings were tabulated and results were discussed as plans for the next step in the process were discussed.  Board members agreed that the items that were rated 15 and above would be appropriately packaged by Ken Grafton and Chris Boerboom.  Once the packages were prepared, ballots and accompanying narratives will be distributed by mail and board members will be asked to return so results will be available for discussion at a March 2 meeting in Fargo.  Items that ranked lower than 15 would be listed as “future needs.”

The meeting adjourned at 3:45 p.m.

Recorded by Margaret Olson


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