Regents Approve Simplot Proposal, Hear Plan to Maintain Tetonia,
The board approved the proposed agreement during the meeting of the Idaho State Board of Education. The university regents also heard a report that operations will continue through
"We thank the regents for their favorable reaction to this public-private collaboration," said university President Duane Nellis. "We also extend our thanks to the J.R. Simplot Company for joining the
The agreement and report are the latest steps in a long-term consolidation and restructuring plan begun early this year for the state-funded Agricultural Research and Extension Service in response to legislative budget cuts and gubernatorial holdback directives that already total $4.7 million or 17 percent.
The Simplot agreement and financial support from other agricultural interests are examples of alternative ways to meet
The agreement is critical to maintaining operations at the
"Simplot has, through this agreement, acquired rights to access research land and also upkeep and maintenance, which is a separate and compact agreement," Hammel said.
"We anticipate that the Simplot Company will still fund nonproprietary research ventures with the other faculty at the
"The advantage to this agreement is that Simplot Company has research partners that the company will bring to the table, which will only enhance the industrial partnership as our relationships grow," Hammel said.
In broad terms, the agreement submitted to the board of regents outlines a commitment from Simplot to contribute $300,000 each year for five years to the Parma Research and
The funds would be used to pay the university's labor, materials and other operating costs directly applicable to management and operation of the land and facilities provided by the university under this agreement and to contribute to costs associated with the university's overall maintenance of the
The university will continue to conduct its separately funded field crop research at the
The agreement addresses
Hammel said encouraging conversations continue to maintain the orchard and vineyard with the
At the Tetonia Research and Extension Center, contributions of $120,000 from the Idaho Potato Commission, $15,000 from the Idaho Barley Commission and $20,000 from licensed potato variety royalties will fund operations there through the 2010 harvest in late fall. A special gift fund will go to support operations at Sandpoint at 60 percent of normal through June 30.
The three research and extension centers were proposed for closure by year's end after a statewide panel of agricultural interests met in April and reviewed the statewide system. In July, Gov. C.L. "Butch" Otter and