7 U.S. Code § 3121 - Responsibilities of Secretary and Department of Agriculture

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The Department of Agriculture is designated as the lead agency of the Federal Government for agricultural research (except with respect to the biomedical aspects of human nutrition concerned with diagnosis or treatment of disease), extension, and teaching in the food and agricultural sciences, and the Secretary, in carrying out the Secretary’s responsibilities, shall—
(1) establish jointly with the Secretary of Health and Human Services procedures for coordination with respect to nutrition research in areas of mutual interest;
(2) keep informed of developments in, and the Nation’s need for, research, extension, teaching, and manpower development in the food and agricultural sciences and represent such need in deliberations within the Department of Agriculture, elsewhere within the executive branch of the United States Government, and with the several States and their designated land-grant colleges and universities, other colleges and universities, agricultural and related industries, and other interested institutions and groups;
(3) coordinate all agricultural research, extension, and teaching activity conducted or financed by the Department of Agriculture and, to the maximum extent practicable, by other agencies of the executive branch of the United States Government;
(4) take the initiative in establishing coordination of State-Federal cooperative agricultural research, extension, and teaching programs, funded in whole or in part by the Department of Agriculture in each State, through the administrative heads of land-grant colleges and universities and the State directors of agricultural experiment stations and cooperative extension services, and other appropriate program administrators;
(5) consult the Advisory Board and appropriate advisory committees of the Department of Agriculture in the formulation of basic policies, goals, strategies, and priorities for programs of agricultural research, extension, and teaching;
(6) report (as a part of the Department of Agriculture’s annual budget submissions) to the House Committee on Agriculture, the House Committee on Appropriations, the Senate Committee on Agriculture, Nutrition, and Forestry, and the Senate Committee on Appropriations actions taken or proposed to support the recommendations of the Advisory Board;
(7) establish appropriate review procedures to assure that agricultural research projects are timely and properly reported and published and that there is no unnecessary duplication of effort or overlapping between agricultural research units;
(8) establish Federal or cooperative multidisciplinary research teams on major agricultural research problems with clearly defined leadership, budget responsibility, and research programs;
(9) in order to promote the coordination of agricultural research of the Department of Agriculture, conduct a continuing inventory of ongoing and completed research projects being conducted within or funded by the Department;
(10) coordinate all agricultural research, extension, and teaching activities conducted or financed by the Department of Agriculture with the periodic renewable resource assessment and program provided for in sections 1601 and 1602 of title 16 and the appraisal and program provided for in sections 2004 and 2005 of title 16;
(11) coordinate the efforts of States, State cooperative institutions, State extension services, the Advisory Board, and other appropriate institutions in assessing the current status of, and developing a plan for, the effective transfer of new technologies, including biotechnology, to the farming community, with particular emphasis on addressing the unique problems of small- and medium-sized farms in gaining information about those technologies; and
(12) establish appropriate controls with respect to the development and use of the application of biotechnology to agriculture.


(Pub. L. 95–113, title XIV, § 1405,Sept. 29, 1977, 91 Stat. 985; Pub. L. 97–98, title XIV, § 1405,Dec. 22, 1981, 95 Stat. 1298; Pub. L. 99–198, title XIV, § 1404,Dec. 23, 1985, 99 Stat. 1544; Pub. L. 101–624, title XVI, § 1605(b)(3),Nov. 28, 1990, 104 Stat. 3714; Pub. L. 104–127, title VIII, §§ 852(b)(1), 853 (b)(2),Apr. 4, 1996, 110 Stat. 1171, 1172.)

1996—Par. (5). Pub. L. 104–127, § 852(b)(1)(A), substituted “Advisory Board” for “Joint Council, Advisory Board,”.
Par. (11). Pub. L. 104–127, § 852(b)(1)(B), struck out “the Joint Council,” before “the Advisory Board”.
Par. (12). Pub. L. 104–127, § 853(b)(2), struck out “, after coordination with the Technology Board,” after “establish”.
1990—Par. (12). Pub. L. 101–624inserted “, after coordination with the Technology Board,” after “establish”.
1985—Pars. (11), (12). Pub. L. 99–198added pars. (11) and (12) and struck out former par. (11) which required the Secretary to “take the initiative in overcoming barriers to long-range planning by developing, in conjunction with the States, State cooperative institutions, the Joint Council, the Advisory Board, and other appropriate institutions, a long-term needs assessment for food, fiber, and forest products, and by determining the research requirements necessary to meet the identified needs.”
1981—Par. (1). Pub. L. 97–98, § 1405(1), substituted “Secretary of Health and Human Services” for “Secretary of Health, Education, and Welfare”.
Par. (5). Pub. L. 97–98, § 1405(2), substituted “and appropriate advisory” for “and other appropriate advisory”.
Par. (6). Pub. L. 97–98, § 1405(3), inserted “or proposed”.
Pars. (10), (11). Pub. L. 97–98, § 1405(4)–(6), added pars. (10) and (11).
Effective Date of 1981 Amendment

Amendment by Pub. L. 97–98effective Dec. 22, 1981, see section 1801 ofPub. L. 97–98, set out as an Effective Date note under section 4301 of this title.
Effective Date

Subchapter effective Oct. 1, 1977, see section 1901 ofPub. L. 95–113, set out as an Effective Date of 1977 Amendment note under section 1307 of this title.

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7 USCDescription of ChangeSession YearPublic LawStatutes at Large


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