Centers of Excellence Provision
SEC. 7214. CENTERS OF EXCELLENCE
(a) IN GENERAL.—The Food, Agriculture, Conservation, and Trade Act of 1990 is amended by inserting after section 1672D (7 U.S.C. 5925f) the following new section:
SEC. 1673. CENTERS OF EXCELLENCE
(a) FUNDING PRIORITIES.—The Secretary shall prioritize centers of excellence established for purposes of carrying out research, extension, and education activities relating to the food and agricultural sciences (as defined in section 1404 of the National Agricultural Research, Extension, and Teaching Policy Act of 1977 (7 U.S.C. 3103) for the receipt of funding for any competitive research or extension program administered by the Secretary.
(b) COMPOSITION.—A center of excellence is composed of 1 or more of the eligible entities specified in subsection (b)(7) of the Competitive, Special, and Facilities Research Grant Act (7
U.S.C. 450i(b)(7)) that provide financial or in-kind support to the center of excellence.
(c) CRITERIA FOR CENTERS OF EXCELLENCE.—
(1) REQUIRED EFFORTS.—The criteria for recognition as a center of excellence shall include efforts—
(A) to ensure coordination and cost effectiveness by reducing unnecessarily duplicative efforts regarding research, teaching, and extension;
(B) to leverage available resources by using public private partnerships among agricultural industry groups, institutions of higher education, and the Federal Government;
(C) to implement teaching initiatives to increase awareness and effectively disseminate solutions to target audiences through extension activities; and 7 USC 5926.
(D) to increase the economic returns to rural communities by identifying, attracting, and directing funds to high-priority agricultural issues.
(2) ADDITIONAL EFFORTS.—Where practicable, the criteria for recognition as a center of excellence shall include efforts to improve teaching capacity and infrastructure at colleges and universities (including land-grant colleges and universities, cooperating forestry schools, NLGCA Institutions (as those terms are defined in section 1404 of the National Agricultural
Research, Extension, and Teaching Policy Act of 1977 (7 U.S.C. 3103)), and schools of veterinary medicine).
(a) EFFECTIVE DATE.—The amendments made by subsection
(b) shall take effect on October 1, 2014.