State Board of Agricultural Research and Education


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February 17, 2016, Fargo

State Board of Agricultural Research and Education
Minutes - February 17, 2016
Fargo, ND

The State Board of Agricultural Research and Education met for a regular meeting at the NDSU Alumni Center on February 17, 2016 starting at 10:00 AM. Board members in attendance were Mike Beltz, Judge Barth, Mark Birdsall, Chris Boerboom, Dean Bresciani, Doug Goehring, Ken Grafton, Lance Gulleson, Jerry Klein, Brian Leier, JoAnn Rodenbiker, Dick Roland, Lyle Warner, and Dean Wehri. Members Absent: Tracy Boe and Keith Peltier.

Chairman Beltz called the meeting to order at 10:04 AM. He welcomed everyone and invited the board and guests to make their introductions. A motion was made by Lyle Warner and seconded by Mark Birdsall to approve the meeting minutes from the regular meeting on December 15, 2015, as well as the special meetings held on January 5, 12, 15, and February 10. Motion carried.

Chairman Beltz highlighted an item discussed at the January 15 Extension subcommittee meeting related to NDSU Extension Service verbiage in the ND Century Code 4-05.1-19. JoAnn Rodenbiker made a motion, seconded by Brian Leier, to propose edits to the verbiage specified as ‘Option 3’ in the subcommittee minutes. Discussion followed, and Chris Boerboom added that from the Extension perspective, ‘Option 3’ reflects current practice best and doesn’t change current policies. This edit reads: “Develop proactive strategies for the Extension Service to fulfill its mission to improve the lives and livelihood of North Dakotans by providing research-based education.” Motion carried.

Administrative Update from President Bresciani:

President Bresciani reported that NDSU is in a stable position to handle the cuts to the state budget; the university is well prepared and fortunate that extensive sacrifices are not necessary at this time.

Administrative Update for the ND Agricultural Experiment Station (AES):

Dr. Ken Grafton reintroduced Dr. Jane Schuh, Associate Professor in VMS, who was the Associate Director of the ND Agricultural Experiment Station and has been serving as Interim Dean of the School of Business. Dr. Schuh hopes to return to her NDAES role this summer. One of her first tasks will be to initiate the strategic planning process for NDAES.

The 4.05% allotment plan will be handled using salary savings and reducing operating allocations. The Langdon Research Extension Center land purchase is nearing completion; Dr. Grafton expressed sincere appreciation to SBARE and all those who supported bringing this to fruition. The North Central Research Extension Center interim director has been selected; a permanent director search is proceeding. The Veterinary Diagnostic Lab plan came in under bid and, if completed under budget, any remaining funds would return to the state. The search to fill the spring wheat breeder position had numerous applications; candidates were interviewed on campus recently. An offer has been made to the top candidate.

Administrative Update for the NDSU Extension Service (EXT):

Dr. Chris Boerboom briefly reiterated Extension’s plan for the allotment. The Northeast District Director search is well underway with interviews completing in February. The North Central Research Extension Center crop protection specialist position has an offer out at this time. Additional searches underway include the Plant Diagnostic Lab position, an Animal Science Sheep Specialist, a Livestock Specialist for Hettinger Research Extension Center, a joint Nutrition specialist position with the University of MN, two 4-H specialist positions, an Ag Agent for Bowman County, and a 4-H agent for Dickey County.

The primary rewrite to N.D.C.C. 4-08 will move the chapter on the Extension agent from the agriculture title to the county title. Some sections will have extensive revisions as these haven’t been reworked in over 100 years.

The North Central Region Directors recently commissioned a study on the value of Extension Food and Consumer Science programming and Dr. Deb Gebeke, Assistant Director, NDSU Extension Service Family and Consumer Sciences, was one of the co-leaders on that project. The study results were shared with Dr. Sonny Ramaswamy, director of the USDA National Institute of Food and Agriculture (NIFA). Gebeke will represent NDSU and the North Central Region directors at a briefing to Ramaswamy and NIFA on March 9, 2016 to share a summary of the findings.

The Agricultural Research Fund

Chairman Beltz shared handouts showing research fund allocations from 2014-2015 as well as 2015-2016. He asked board members if adjustments to the percentages for distribution of monies to the various commodities should be discussed at this time. No changes were proposed.

Chairman Beltz recognized guest Maynard Helgaas who offered stakeholder testimony and an update regarding an energy beet project in Central North Dakota.

Discussion of North Dakota Agricultural Experiment Station Initiatives

Dr. Grafton reviewed the list of initiatives and explained details. The Oakes project was the highest ranked item, and there are several factors wrapped into the Oakes initiative making it a stand-alone item in need of funding kept separate from other initiatives. Members discussed various ideas and aspects of the initiatives at length. The board reached agreement on identified changes.

Discussion of NDSU Extension Service Initiatives

Dr. Chris Boerboom reviewed the list of initiatives as drafted and explained the details. Discussion followed and members considered various ideas for the initiative packaging. No changes were identified for these initiatives at this time.

Capital Projects Discussion

Dr. Grafton shared the capital projects list and noted that two items on the one-time request list are present because the board previously agreed to bring them forward from prior SBARE initiatives that were not funded. Input and requests related to University buildings were discussed and careful consideration was given. Mark Birdsall made a motion and it was seconded by Judge Barth to strike any University buildings from the list due to being property of the University and not the Agricultural Experiment Station. Motion carried.

Capital requests specific to Research Extension Centers were listed by station and an overview was given by Dr. Grafton. Discussion on bundling options followed.

Board members discussed various approaches to seed cleaning capital requests. There was general agreement to move forward with seeking the remainder of the unfunded seed cleaning plant request made last time. Chairman Beltz reminded Research Extension Center directors that there is a fundraising component to complete each of these projects and the centers would be expected to follow through with this aspect as agreed upon in the last legislative session.

The Board agreed that one-time requests will be brought forward as in past, without a prioritization.

The next meeting is Friday, March 11. Members will soon receive their electronic ballot and this time initiatives will be ranked in the vote.

Chairman Beltz adjourned the meeting at 2:43 PM.

Minutes submitted by Lorie Herbel.

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