Bill summaries are authored by CRS.

Shown Here:
Passed House amended (11/08/1997)

TABLE OF CONTENTS:

Title I: Coordination, Planning, and Definitions Regarding

Agricultural Research, Extension, and Education

Title II: Reform of Existing Research, Extension, and

Education Authorities

Subtitle A: Smith-Lever Act and Hatch Act of 1887

Subtitle B: National Agricultural Research, Extension,

and Teaching Policy Act of 1977

Subtitle C: Food, Agriculture, Conservation, and Trade

Act of 1990

Subtitle D: National Research Initiative

Subtitle E: Other Existing Laws

Title III: Extension or Repeal of Research, Extension,

and Education Initiatives

Subtitle A: Extensions

Subtitle B: Repeals

Title IV: New Research, Extension, and Education

Initiatives

Subtitle A: Partnerships for High-Value Agricultural

Product Quality Research

Subtitle B: Precision Agriculture

Subtitle C: Other Initiatives

Title V: Miscellaneous Provisions

Agricultural Research, Extension, and Education Reauthorization Act of 1997 - Title I: Coordination, Planning, and Definitions Regarding Agricultural Research, Extension, and Education - Amends the National Agricultural Research, Extension, and Teaching Policy Act of 1977 to direct the Secretary of Agriculture (Secretary) to establish priorities and specified management principles for federally supported and conducted agricultural research, extension, and education.

(Sec. 102) Revises the definition of "food and agricultural sciences."

(Sec. 103) Revises specified consultation provisions with respect to the National Agricultural Research, Extension, Education, and Economics Advisory Board.

(Sec. 104) Directs the Secretary to provide for: (1) scientific peer review of research grants and merit review of extension and education grants by the Cooperative State Research, Education, and Extension Service; and (2) scientific peer review of research activities of the Department of Agriculture (Department).

Requires pre-funding merit review of college and university research and extension activities. Makes related amendments to the Smith-Lever Act and the Hatch Act of 1887.

(Sec. 105) Makes all colleges and universities eligible for agricultural research, extension, and education cost-reimbursable agreements.

(Sec. 106) Directs the Secretary to: (1) create performance guidelines for Department research, extension, and education programs; and (2) evaluate such programs' national scope and benefits.

Title II: Reform of Existing Research, Extension, and Education Authorities - Subtitle A: Smith-Lever Act and Hatch Act of 1887 - Amends specified Acts to make their common names (Smith-Lever Act and the Hatch Act of 1887) their official titles.

(Sec. 202) Revises such Acts with respect to: (1) matching funds; and (2) plans of work for recipient institutions.

Subtitle B: National Agricultural Research, Extension and Teaching Policy Act of 1977 - Amends the National Agricultural Research, Extension, and Teaching Policy Act of 1977 with respect to 1890 land grant colleges, including Tuskegee University, to: (1) revise extension and research plans of work provisions; and (2) direct the Secretary to develop protocols to evaluate multi-State and mult-institutional programs.

(Sec. 212) Establishes a phased-in matching funds requirement for such institutions beginning with FY 2000. Requires each institution to report to the Secretary by September 30, 1999, identifying non-Federal fund sources.

Changes specified references to Tuskegee Institute to Tuskegee University.

(Sec. 213) Includes "teaching" within such Act's international research and extension activities.

(Sec. 214) Transfers authority for a specified agricultural research facilities task force from the Research Facilities Act to the National Agricultural Research, Extension, and Teaching Policy Act of 1977. Repeals the Research Facilities Act.

Subtitle C: Food, Agriculture, Conservation, and Trade Act of 1990 - Amends the Food, Agriculture, Conservation, and Trade Act of 1990 to authorize appropriations through FY 2002 for the agricultural genome initiative (currently the plant genome mapping program).

Subtitle D: National Research Initiative - Amends the Competitive, Special, and Facilities Research Grant Act to authorize the Secretary to waive the matching requirement for certain small college or university projects (based upon equipment cost and use).

Subtitle E: Other Existing Laws - Amends the Forest and Rangeland Renewable Resources Research Act of 1978 to: (1) authorize the Secretary to use specified amounts available from forestry competitive research grants for certain high priority forestry research areas; and (2) direct the Secretary to establish a program to inventory and analyze public and private U.S. forests.

Title III: Extension or Repeal of Research, Extension, and Education Initiatives - Subtitle A: Extensions - Amends the Competitive, Special, and Facilities Research Grant Act to authorize appropriations through FY 2002 for competitive, special, and facilities research grants.

(Sec. 302) Amends the Equity in Educational Land-Grant Status Act of 1994 to authorize appropriations through FY 2002 for "1994 Institutions" (Indian and tribal colleges), and institutional capacity building grants.

(Sec. 303) Amends the National Agricultural Research, Extension, and Teaching Policy Act of 1977 to authorize appropriations and programs through FY 2002 for: (1) education grants for Hispanic-serving institutions; (2) agricultural extension and research, and State experiment stations; (3) food and agricultural science education; (4) research on the production and marketing of alcohols and industrial hydrocarbons from agricultural commodities and forest products; (5) policy research centers; (6) human nutrition intervention and health promotion research; (7) pilot research program to combine medical and agricultural research; (8) food and nutrition education program; (9) animal health and disease continuing and national or regional research; (10) grants to upgrade agricultural and food sciences facilities at 1890 land-grant colleges; (11) national research and training centennial centers; (12) supplemental and alternative crops research; (13) aquaculture research and extension; and (14) rangeland research.

(Sec. 319) Amends the National Agricultural Research, Extension, and Teaching Policy Act Amendments of 1985 to authorize appropriations through FY 2002 for Federal agricultural research facilities.

(Sec. 320) Amends the Food, Agriculture, Conservation, and Trade Act of 1990 to authorize appropriations through FY 2002 for: (1) national genetics resources program; (2) agricultural telecommunications program; (3) assistive technology program for farmers with disabilities; (4) national rural information center clearinghouse; and (5) water quality research.

(Sec. 325) Amends the Critical Agricultural Materials Act to authorize appropriations through FY 2002 for the critical agricultural materials program.

Subtitle B: Repeals - Amends the National Agricultural Research, Extension, and Teaching Policy Act of 1977 to repeal grant authority for aquaculture research facilities at Illinois State University and Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University.

(Sec. 342) Amends the National Agricultural Research, Extension, and Teaching Policy Act Amendments of 1981 to repeal the dairy goat research program.

(Sec. 343) Amends the Food, Agriculture, Conservation, and Trade Act of 1990 to repeal the livestock product safety and inspection program.

(Sec. 344) Amends the Federal Agriculture Improvement and Reform Act of 1996 to repeal FY 1998 through 2002 authorization of appropriations for agricultural research, extension, and education.

Title IV: New Research, Extension, and Education Initiatives - Subtitle A: Partnerships for High-Value Agricultural Product Quality Research - Authorizes the Secretary to make grants to an eligible partnership (a land-grant college acting in partnership with other colleges, Federal laboratories, and nonprofit research entities) to coordinate research and extension activities to enhance the quality of high-value agricultural products. Authorizes FY 1998 through 2002 appropriations.

Subtitle B: Precision Agriculture - Authorizes the Secretary to make grants to promote precision agriculture (as defined by this Act), including the encouragement of national and multi-State precision agriculture partnerships. Authorizes FY 1998 through 2002 appropriations, with funds reserved for education and information dissemination projects.

Subtitle C: Other Initiatives - Amends the Food, Agriculture, Conservation, and Trade Act to authorize the Secretary to: (1) make grants for high-priority research and extension activities (in lieu of existing specialized research programs); and (2) appoint a related task force. Authorizes FY 1998 through 2002 appropriations.

(Sec. 422) Authorizes the Secretary to make grants for an organic agriculture research and extension initiative. Authorizes FY 1998 through 2002 appropriations.

(Sec. 423) Amends the National Agricultural Research, Extension, and Teaching Policy Act of 1977 to authorize the Secretary to: (1) provide for a joint United States-Mexico agricultural research program; and (2) make grants to colleges and universities for international agricultural science and education programs (authorizes appropriations).

(Sec. 425) Directs the Secretary to continue operation of the Food Animal Residue Avoidance Database program. Authorizes program grants for colleges and universities.

(Sec. 426) Authorizes the Secretary to enter into cooperative agreements with private entities to use the facilities and expertise of the Agricultural Research Service (ARS) to develop and commercialize new biobased products. Authorizes appropriations.

(Sec. 427) Directs the Secretary to establish the Thomas Jefferson Initiative for Crop Diversification for the production and marketing of new and nontraditional crops. Authorizes appropriations.

(Sec. 428) Authorizes the Secretary to establish an integrated research, education, and extension grant program. Authorizes appropriations.

(Sec. 429) Amends the Equity in Educational Land-Grant Status Act of 1994 to authorize the Secretary to make grants to 1994 Institutions to conduct agricultural research that addresses high priority tribal, national, and multi-State concerns. Authorizes FY 1998 through 2002 appropriations.

Title V: Miscellaneous Provisions - States that the Secretary shall be the principal executive branch official with respect to agricultural and food sciences research and extension.

(Sec. 502) Directs the Secretary to: (1) establish a Food Safety Research Information Office in the National Agricultural Library; and (2) periodically update nutrient composition data.

(Sec. 505) Amends Federal law to make fees collected at the National Arboretum available to the Secretary without further appropriations.

(Sec. 506) Provides that fees collected by ARS from the Patent Culture Collection shall be retained for Collection maintenance and operation.

(Sec. 507) Authorizes the Agricultural Marketing Service to reimburse the American Sheep Industry Association for certain marketing order expenses incurred under the Sheep Promotion, Research, and Information Act of 1994.

(Sec. 508) Designates the Subtropical Agricultural Research Center in Weslaco, Texas, as the Kika de la Garza Subtropical Agricultural Research Center.

(Sec. 509) Expresses the sense of the Congress that: (1) a substantial amount of ARS funds regarding methyl bromide alternatives should be used for research in real conditions, such as pre-planting and post-harvest conditions; (2) the Secretary and the Secretary of Education should cooperate in providing school-based agricultural education; and (3) the Secretary should designate a department crisis management team.