State Board of Agricultural Research and Education


| Share

July 28-29, 2015, Minot and Williston

The State Board of Agricultural Research and Education met in Minot at the North Central Research Extension Center (NCREC), and in Williston at the Williston Research Extension Center (WREC). Board members participating were Mike Beltz, Mark Birdsall, Tracy Boe, Ken Grafton, Lance Gulleson, Jerry Klein, Brian Leier, Keith Peltier, JoAnn Rodenbiker, Dick Roland, and Lyle Warner. Ms. Jessie Pfaff, Commissioner Doug Goehring’s representative for the meeting, is a Livestock Development Specialist from the ND Department of Agriculture. Absent: Leland (Judge) Barth, Chris Boerboom, and Dean Bresciani.

July 28, 2015

Chairman Beltz called meeting to order at 1:00 pm. He welcomed members and guests and invited everyone to make introductions. He extended a special welcome to SBARE’s newest member, Mr. Dean Wehri, of Mott, ND.

Administrative Update from Mike Beltz

Chairman Beltz expressed gratitude for the efforts and support given by the board last legislative session. Senator Klein and Representative Boe were both reappointed to SBARE. On August 13 the 4-H camp at Washburn will have a grand opening and ribbon cutting ceremony for the new facilities. Chairman Beltz along with Drs. Grafton and Boerboom hope to meet with the new NDUS Chancellor Mark Hagerott in the near future.

Motion to approve the May 5, 2015 minutes was made by Keith Peltier and seconded by Jerry Klein. Motion passed.

Oakes Update from Kelly Klosterman

Mr. Kelly Klosterman of the Garrison Diversion Conservancy District shared that a fundraising committee in the Oakes area has raised around $60,000-$70,000 to date, and that a part-time site manager has been hired at the Oakes Irrigation Site. The ND Corn Council and the ND Soybean Council have both committed significant funds to the project. A combine was procured and delivered; work is being done on the rinse pad. In land negotiations, an area landowner announced intentions to donate 34 acres for NDSU irrigation research in the area. Current dollars will support Oakes’ linear needs out of Carrington; future funds could go toward infrastructure to house equipment.

Extension Update from the Northwest District

Mike Hansen, Northwest District Extension Director, shared regional programming highlights. Lori Scharmer, Family Economic Specialist, noted that farm succession planning programs are being offered. Ward County Extension Agents Paige Brummond, Agriculture, and Micky Zurcher, 4-H Youth Development, discussed one of Extension’s successful Signature programs with youth called ‘Prairie Days.’ Jared Nelson, Bottineau County Extension Agent, assisted regional producers in understanding the Farm Bill. He coached area producers by offering several program presentations as well as conducting over 100 individual one-on-one appointments to examine various scenarios related to their operations.

State Specialists Andrew Swenson and Dwight Aakre crafted a spreadsheet guide producers could use when making key decisions.

Presentation by the North Central Research Extension Center (NCREC)

Jay Fisher, Director, gave an overview of the NCREC including mission and advisory board structure. Focus is on agronomic research and production of pure foundation seed stock. Center staff gave Board members a tour of the agronomy labs, greenhouse, the seed cleaning and seed storage facilities, center grounds, machinery and equipment. Fisher discussed equipment expense changes this year particularly as it relates to state fleet/motor pool.

Fisher noted the legislature appropriated $750,000 to this Center and the Carrington REC for seed cleaning equipment. The Centers receiving the equipment were also authorized to raise up to $3M in special funds to build facilities to house the equipment as necessary. The intent was to allow room for the Centers to decide if they wish to do the additional fundraising based on needs related to new equipment. Discussion followed.

NCREC staff provided presentations on promising pulse crop varieties, wild oat control, fava bean crops, herbicide tolerant lentils, soil health initiative efforts, salinity issues, and more cross-departmental projects and trials. Presenters included Thomas Stefaniak, Assistant Pulse Crop Breeder; Erik Eriksmoen, Research Agronomist; Chris Augustin, Area Extension Specialist in Soil Health; and Shana Forster, Area Extension Specialist in Cropping Systems.

Meeting recessed at 4:00 PM for travel to Williston, ND.

July 29, 2015

Chairman Beltz called meeting to order at 8:42 AM. He welcomed members and guests, and invited everyone to make introductions.

Administrative Report from Dr. Grafton

Dr. Grafton said that following Tom Teigen’s retirement, the search for a new Agronomy Seed Farm director brought in three applicants. Brian Otteson was hired and brings a great deal of experience to the position. The Dickinson Research Extension Center’s recent land auction of 100 acres was unsuccessful and will be re-attempted in the future. The Langdon Research Extension Center has an option to purchase acres near the center.  Funds are partially available; however, additional fundraising is taking place. NDSU’s HRSW breeder resigned and a plan for this position is being discussed. An architect for the new Veterinary Diagnostic Lab was selected, as well as an experienced lab designer to oversee the lab design process.

Committee Elections

Chairman Beltz called on Vice Chair Keith Peltier to take the floor. Rodney Howe was invited to give the nomination committee report pertaining to the Chair position. Howe put forward the name of Mike Beltz for Chair. Jerry Klein moved to cast a unanimous ballot for Mike Beltz as Chair, and Dick Roland seconded. Hearing no other nominations, Peltier asked for unanimous ballot; Tracy Boe moved that nominations cease and the Board cast a unanimous ballot for Mike Beltz as Chair, and Jerry Klein seconded. Motion passed. Peltier transferred the floor back to Chairman Beltz.

Beltz continued by thanking the board for opportunity to serve. Howe reported that the nominating committee brings forward the name of Keith Peltier for Vice Chair. Tracy Boe moved to cast a unanimous ballot for Keith Peltier as Vice Chair, and Jerry Klein seconded.  Hearing no other nominations, Beltz asked for a unanimous ballot; Joann Rodenbiker moved that nominations cease and the Board cast a unanimous ballot for Keith Peltier as Vice Chair, and Lance Gulleson seconded. Motion passed.

Recognition of Rodney Howe

Chairman Beltz recognized Rodney Howe’s contribution as Chair of SBARE, noting that he is owed a debt of gratitude for his integrity and commitment to the causes of the board. Howe reflected on SBARE’s history and its purpose of having grassroots input in the North Dakota legislative process on behalf of agriculture.

Discussion of future activities

Chairman Beltz noted that listening sessions will begin in October in Bismarck. SBARE begins the process of receiving input from stakeholders at this time, and sessions will continue in November (Fargo), December and onwards.

Extension Update

Lynette Flage, Director of the Extension Service Center for Community Vitality, gave an overview of a program developed for assisting the community members of the Bakken region. It seeks to meet the needs of newcomers while also engaging them and encourages long-term residence well beyond the ‘boom.’ More youth in the region are joining 4-H. Workshops assisting McKenzie County residents have been coordinated by Karla Ryan, McKenzie County Extension agent, and Danielle Steinhoff, Williams County Extension agent, informing locals on various aspects of reclamation. This includes environmental impacts, financial aspects, successful communication, and other key facets. Sponsors included business and community leaders, farmers, reclamation experts, and soil conservationists. The program was a great success and the programming will be repeated this fall.

Presentation by WREC Staff, tour

Jerry Bergman, Director, introduced his team of specialists and staff, and welcomed the SBARE members on a tour of facilities and field plots. Several specialists shared their expertise while discussing lab research, field trials and research updates.


Chairman Beltz reminded Board members that they had the opportunity to visit the Nesson Valley irrigation site before departing region; this is optional for anyone interested.

Motion to adjourn the meeting made by Lyle Warner, seconded by Brian Leier. Motion passed and meeting was adjourned at 1:00 p.m.

Creative Commons License
Feel free to use and share this content, but please do so under the conditions of our Creative Commons license and our Rules for Use. Thanks.