State Board of Agricultural Research and Education


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January 15, 2016, Bismarck (subcommittee meeting)

State Board of Agricultural Research and Education
Minutes - January 15, 2016
Subcommittee meeting - Bismarck, ND

A committee of the State Board of Agricultural Research and Education met for a special meeting at the Burleigh County Extension Office in Bismarck, ND on January 15, 2016 at 10:00 AM. Board members in attendance were Mike Beltz, Chris Boerboom, Jessie Pfaff representing Doug Goehring, Lance Gulleson (by phone), Brian Leier, JoAnn Rodenbiker, Richard Roland, Lyle Warner and Dean Wehri. Also attending were Brad Cogdill, Lynette Flage, Deb Gebeke, and Charlie Stoltenow.

Committee Chair Rodenbiker call the meeting to order to discuss the Extension needs that were ranked as priorities by SBARE. Lyle Warner noted that the full SBARE board was not present to participate in this discussion and that it was inappropriate for this committee to make decisions for the Board. JoAnn Rodenbiker noted that this committee would not make decisions but report back to the full Board. Chris Boerboom presented the list of Extension’s 13 needs that received the highest rankings, which had scores of 17 to 40 and were approved by SBARE during the January 12 conference call. The committee discussed if the water quality specialist line should have an FTE added or if the line should be changed to be solely for operating for water quality education. By consensus, it was determined to keep the water quality specialist as an FTE. The two FTEs for the value added cropping specialists were discussed and by consensus, it was determined that two FTEs should be maintained instead of recommending removal one FTE at this time.

Three main options for bundling the Extension initiatives were discussed. By consensus, the committee supported the following approach where the operational support for other highly ranked needs could be supported through the I3 Initiative. The I3 Initiative should keep a portion of funds (perhaps 25%) to support cross-program efforts like improvements in web-based delivery. Other I3 funds would be used to support Extension programs on a competitive basis. Examples of programs that have been identified as needing support and were ranked as priorities are listed within the I3 Initiative. The two community leadership/RLND and two family/nutrition needs were consolidated because of similarities. Bulleted items within the other initiatives are also in rank-based order.

Extension Initiatives

1) I3 Initiative: Operating support, which could provide support for enhancements in:

  • Web-based information delivery
  • Soil health initiative programming
  • Weed resistance education
  • Leadership and community development programming
  • Family and nutrition educational support

2) Farm Safety Initiative

  • Farm safety education specialist and operating (1 FTE)

3) Enhancing the Agricultural Economy

  • Farm financial management specialist and operating (1 FTE)
  • Extension pollinator specialist and operating (1 FTE)
  • Water quality specialist and operating (1 FTE)
  • Value added cropping specialists and operating (2 FTE)

Committee Chair Rodenbiker had Chris Boerboom make comments on the potential process to administer the I3 Initiative if funded. Chris re-distributed copies of the Extension community forum report and I3 Initiative handout. He suggested that it may be appropriate to address the complex issues identified by the forums with issue-based teams within the three main critical needs of economic prosperity, community engagement, and healthy citizens rather than allocating funds to the four Extension program areas. Examples of the AES Precision Agriculture and the SBARE Ag Research Fund applications and guidelines were shared as examples that may be used as models for allocation of the competitive I3 funds. It was noted that Extension needs flexibility in timing to support projects vs the one year cycle of SBARE grants. Some funds should also be reserved for organizational needs like web delivery upgrades. External stakeholder involvement was discussed and consensus suggested that Extension administration should select the best projects to fund if the right scorecard was developed. It may be appropriate to get stakeholder input on the scorecard. Leveraging of funds should get bonus points.

Committee Chair Rodenbiker introduced the discussion topic of the Interim Ag and Natural Resources Committee re-writes to ag chapters in the ND Century Code. The re-writes are to address language that is irrelevant, inconsistent, or unclear, but not to change policy. Chris Boerboom noted that he was contacted about revisions on Chapter 4-08 County Agent. He distributed the first three duties of SBARE from 4-05.1-19 and asked if the SBARE’s duty relative to Extension should be re-phrased to better reflect the scope of Extension. Brian Leier recommended the edit to include “proactive”. The current text and an option for consideration are listed below. Mike Beltz stated that this would need consideration of the full board.

Current: 3. Develop ongoing strategies for the dissemination of research information through the extension service;

Option: 3. 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.

Meeting was adjourned.


Minutes submitted by Chris Boerboom.

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