Solicitation of Commodity Board Topics and Contribution of Funding Under the Agriculture and Food Research Initiative Competitive Grants Program, 31224-31226 [2016-11705]

Download as PDF 31224 Notices Federal Register Vol. 81, No. 96 Wednesday, May 18, 2016 This section of the FEDERAL REGISTER contains documents other than rules or proposed rules that are applicable to the public. Notices of hearings and investigations, committee meetings, agency decisions and rulings, delegations of authority, filing of petitions and applications and agency statements of organization and functions are examples of documents appearing in this section. DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE Office of the Secretary USDA Increases the Fiscal Year 2016 Raw Sugar Tariff-Rate Quota Office of the Secretary, USDA. Notice. AGENCY: ACTION: The Office of the Secretary of the Department of Agriculture is providing notice of an increase in the fiscal year (FY) 2016 raw cane sugar tariff-rate quota (TRQ) of 127,006 metric tons raw value (MTRV). DATES: Effective May 18, 2016. FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Souleymane Diaby, Import Policies and Export Reporting Division, Foreign Agricultural Service, Stop 1021, U.S. Department of Agriculture, Washington, DC 20250–1021; or by telephone (202) 720–2916; or by fax to (202) 720–8461; or by email to Souleymane.Diaby@ fas.usda.gov. SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: The Office of the Secretary of the Department of Agriculture is providing notice of an increase in the fiscal year (FY) 2016 (October 1, 2015-September 30, 2016) raw cane sugar tariff-rate quota (TRQ) of 127,006 metric tons raw value (MTRV). On June 15, 2015, the Office of the Secretary established the FY 2016 TRQ for raw cane sugar at 1,117,195 MTRV (1,231,497 short tons raw value, STRV *), the minimum to which the United States is committed under the World Trade Organization (WTO) Uruguay Round Agreements. (80 FR 34129). Pursuant to Additional U.S. Note 5 to Chapter 17 of the U.S. Harmonized Tariff Schedule (HTS) and Section 359k of the Agricultural Adjustment Act of 1938, as amended, the Secretary of Agriculture gives notice of an increase in the quantity of raw cane sugar eligible to enter at the lower sradovich on DSK3TPTVN1PROD with NOTICES SUMMARY: * Conversion factor: 1 metric ton = 1.10231125 short tons. VerDate Sep<11>2014 17:10 May 17, 2016 Jkt 238001 rate of duty during FY 2016 by 127,006 MTRV (140,000 STRV). With this increase, the overall FY 2016 raw sugar TRQ is now 1,244,201 MTRV (1,371,497 STRV). Raw cane sugar under this quota must be accompanied by a certificate for quota eligibility and may be entered until September 30, 2016. The Office of the U.S. Trade Representative will allocate this increase among supplying countries and customs areas. This action is being taken after a determination that additional supplies of raw cane sugar are required in the U.S. market. USDA will closely monitor stocks, consumption, imports and all sugar market and program variables on an ongoing basis, and may make further program adjustments during FY 2016 if needed. Dated: May 13, 2016. Alexis M. Taylor, Deputy Under Secretary, Farm and Foreign Agricultural Services. [FR Doc. 2016–11732 Filed 5–17–16; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 3410–10–P DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE National Institute of Food and Agriculture Solicitation of Commodity Board Topics and Contribution of Funding Under the Agriculture and Food Research Initiative Competitive Grants Program National Institute of Food and Agriculture, USDA. ACTION: Notice of opportunity for commodity boards to submit topics and contribute funding under the Agriculture and Food Research Initiative Competitive Grants Program. AGENCY: As part of the National Institute of Food and Agriculture’s (NIFA) strategy to implement section 7404 of Public Law 113–79, the Agricultural Act of 2014, NIFA is soliciting topics from eligible commodity board entities (Federal and State-level commodity boards, as defined below) which they are willing to equally co-fund with NIFA. Such topics must relate to the established priority areas of the Agriculture and Food Research Initiative Competitive Grants Program (AFRI) to be considered for inclusion in future AFRI Requests for Applications (RFAs). SUMMARY: PO 00000 Frm 00001 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 Commodity boards are those entities established under a commodity promotion law (as such term is defined under section 501(a) of the Federal Agriculture Improvement and Reform Act of 1996 (7 U.S.C. 7401(a)) or a State commodity board (or other equivalent State entity). See the ‘‘Supplementary Information’’ section of this Notice under the heading ‘‘Eligibility for Submitting Topics’’ for further information. If proposed topics are accepted for inclusion in an AFRI RFA after evaluation by NIFA, they will be incorporated into AFRI competitive grants program RFAs. As a condition of funding grants in a topic, NIFA will require an agreement with the commodity board to provide funds that are equal to the amount NIFA is contributing under the agreed upon topic. This Notice invites topic submissions from commodity boards as defined above, outlines the process NIFA will use to evaluate the appropriateness of these topics for inclusion in AFRI RFAs, and describes the commitment commodity boards will be required to make in order for NIFA to jointly fund AFRI applications competitively selected for award within a topic area submitted by the commodity boards. DATES: Topics may be submitted by commodity boards at any time; however, all topics to be considered for the fiscal year 2017 AFRI RFAs must be received by 5:00 p.m., EDT on July 18, 2016. Topics submitted by eligible commodity board entities after this date will be considered for RFAs to be issued in future years. NIFA will hold a webinar and workshop to respond to questions from commodity boards interested in submitting topics. Details including the date and time, and access information will be posted on the NIFA Web site (http://nifa.usda.gov/ commodity-boards/). ADDRESSES: You may submit topics, identified by NIFA–2016–0001, by the following method: Email: commodityboards@ nifa.usda.gov. Instructions: Include NIFA–2016– 0001 in the subject line of the message. The topic submission must be attached to the email using the template located at http://nifa.usda.gov/commodityboards/. All topics received must include the agency name and reference E:\FR\FM\18MYN1.SGM 18MYN1 Federal Register / Vol. 81, No. 96 / Wednesday, May 18, 2016 / Notices to NIFA–2016–0001. Topics submitted by email will not be posted to a public site. FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Mark Mirando; Phone: (202) 401–4336, or Robert Hedberg; Phone: (202) 720– 5384, or Email: commodityboards@ nifa.usda.gov. SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: Background and Purpose This Notice begins the second topic submission cycle to implement section 7404 of the Agricultural Act of 2014, Public Law 113–79, which amends section 2(b) of the Competitive, Special, and Facilities Research Grant Act (7 U.S.C. 450i(b)) to require that NIFA ‘‘establish procedures, including timelines, under which an entity established under a commodity promotion law (as such term is defined under section 501(a) of the Federal Agriculture Improvement and Reform Act of 1996 (7 U.S.C. 7401(a)) or a State commodity board (or other equivalent State entity) may directly submit to the Secretary [(NIFA)] for consideration proposals for requests for applications . . .’’ within the AFRI Program. Stakeholder feedback gathered as a result of the September 2014 Notice and during the initial year of implementation (in fiscal year 2016) informed this Notice and the process NIFA is using to implement section 7404. This Notice invites entities established under a commodity promotion law or State commodity boards (or other equivalent State entities) to submit topics which they are proposing for inclusion in upcoming AFRI RFAs in fiscal year 2017. Topics must relate to the established AFRI priority areas, which are plant health and production and plant products; animal health and production and animal products; food safety, nutrition, and health; bioenergy, natural resources, and environment; agriculture systems and technology; and agriculture economics and rural communities. A summary statement on AFRI is included below. To learn more about AFRI programs, including program priorities, typical award budget amounts, and examples of RFAs, please visit: http:// nifa.usda.gov/commodity-boards. sradovich on DSK3TPTVN1PROD with NOTICES AFRI Program Overview The AFRI program is the largest agricultural competitive grants program in the United States and a primary funding source for research, education, and extension projects that bring practical solutions to some of today’s most critical societal challenges. AFRI programs impact all components of VerDate Sep<11>2014 17:10 May 17, 2016 Jkt 238001 agriculture, including farm and ranch efficiency and profitability, bioenergy, forestry, aquaculture, rural communities, human nutrition, food safety, biotechnology, and genetic improvement of plants and animals. In FY 2017, NIFA will issue at least seven AFRI RFAs to solicit applications in the six statutory priority areas in AFRI (Plant health and production and plant products; Animal health and production and animal products; Food safety, nutrition, and health; Bioenergy, natural resources, and environment; Agriculture systems and technology; Agriculture economics and rural communities). It is anticipated that these will include five Challenge Area RFAs, which address the following major societal challenges: Sustainable Bioenergy; Climate Variability and Change; Water for Food Production Systems; Childhood Obesity Prevention; and Food Safety. The Challenge Area RFAs solicit grant applications for focused problem-solving efforts and provide large awards (typically $1 million or more) for periods of up to 5 years to enable collaboration among multiple organizations and the integration of research with education and/or extension. The sixth RFA is the Foundational Program RFA issued annually which solicits grant applications that focus predominately, but not exclusively, on fundamental scientific research that addresses statutory priorities. The final RFA is the AFRI Food, Agriculture, Natural Resources, and Human Sciences Education and Literacy Initiative (ELI) RFA which solicits grant applications for undergraduate research and extension experiential learning fellowships, and pre- and post-doctoral fellowships. Eligibility for Submitting Topics Eligible commodity board entities are those established under a commodity promotion law (as such term is defined under section 501(a) of the Federal Agriculture Improvement and Reform Act of 1996 (7 U.S.C. 7401(a))) or a State commodity board (or other equivalent State entity). Language in 7 U.S.C. 7401(a) defines a ‘‘commodity promotion law’’ as ‘‘a Federal law that provides for the establishment and operation of a promotion program regarding an agricultural commodity that includes a combination of promotion, research, industry information, or consumer information activities, is funded by mandatory assessments on producers or processors, and is designed to maintain or expand markets and uses for the commodity (as determined by the Secretary).’’ Section PO 00000 Frm 00002 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 31225 7401(a) includes a list of such Federal laws. A current list of approved entities is maintained at (http://nifa.usda.gov/ commodity-boards). Additionally, entities eligible to submit topics include a State commodity board (or other equivalent State entity). This includes commodity boards authorized by State law; commodity boards that are not authorized by State law but are organized and operate within a State and meet the requirements of their authorizing statute; and commodity boards that are authorized by a State and operate within the State for commodities that have no Federal program or oversight. Topic Submission Guidance and Procedures Topics may be submitted at any time and will be evaluated by NIFA on an annual basis. However, to be considered for the proposed fiscal year 2017 AFRI RFAs, topics must be received by COB (5 p.m. Eastern Daylight Time) on July 18, 2016. Each topic proposed must be submitted using the template provided at: http://nifa.usda.gov/commodityboards. Commodity boards may propose support for multiple awards for each topic proposed. For each topic the commodity board proposes to support, the minimum amount contributed by the commodity board must align with budget guidance for each AFRI area (http://nifa.usda.gov/commodityboards) and comply with the maximum amount of $2.5 million allowed per topic. NIFA does not intend to match funding from a single commodity board in excess of $10 million in any year. Commodity boards should only submit topics that have a strong economic impact on their industry and U.S. agriculture as a whole. Examples of topics typically supported by AFRI can be found at http://nifa.usda.gov/ commodity-boards. If topics are accepted for funding, they will be incorporated into AFRI RFAs, and grants supporting the topic area may be awarded to AFRI eligible entities based on a competitive peer review process. As a condition of funding grants in a topic, NIFA will require an agreement to provide funds by the commodity board that is equal to the amount NIFA is contributing under the agreed upon topic. If a topic is selected for inclusion in an RFA, the commodity board submitting the topic will be required to maintain the confidentiality of the topic until the RFA is issued by NIFA. Commodity board funds must be made available to NIFA no later than the time awards are E:\FR\FM\18MYN1.SGM 18MYN1 31226 Federal Register / Vol. 81, No. 96 / Wednesday, May 18, 2016 / Notices sradovich on DSK3TPTVN1PROD with NOTICES selected for funding. The grants will be fully funded at the beginning of the award, thus requiring that all commodity board funds and NIFA funds be available at the time of the award. Applications submitted under topics provided by commodity boards will be required to include a letter of support from the commodity board that proposed the topic. Evaluation and Notification Process NIFA will screen proposed research topics to ensure they were submitted by eligible commodity boards and consult with USDA’s Agricultural Marketing Service (AMS) to determine that submissions and proposed financial contributions are consistent with commodity promotion laws and commodity boards’ charters as applicable. Commodity board topics will be reviewed by an internal panel based on evaluation criteria that were developed using stakeholder input from commodity boards and other stakeholders from government, industry, and academe. Each topic will be evaluated based on: Alignment with one or more of the statutory AFRI priority areas (six AFRI priority areas authorized in the Farm Bill and described in 7 CFR 3430.309); alignment with the President’s budget proposal for NIFA, as identified in the Department of Agriculture’s annual budget submission; and alignment with the priority areas in the AFRI RFAs to be released by NIFA during the fiscal year for which the commodity board is proposing a topic for funding (for example, within the AFRI Foundational Program RFA, the AFRI Animal Health and Production and Animal Product’s ‘‘Animal Reproduction’’ priority area). From those topics received by COB (5 p.m. Eastern Daylight Time) on July 18, 2016, NIFA will select the topic(s) that were evaluated favorably for inclusion in the appropriate FY 2017 AFRI RFA. NIFA will notify commodity boards whether their topics will be included by August 16, 2016. Based on the evaluation, NIFA reserves the right to negotiate with commodity boards should changes be required for topics and funding amounts to be accepted. Any changes to topics and funding amounts will be reviewed by USDA’s AMS to determine if such changes are consistent with applicable commodity promotion laws. NIFA will evaluate topics submitted after the July 18, 2016 deadline on an annual basis and notify commodity boards whether their topics will be included in subsequent RFAs within two weeks following the meeting of the VerDate Sep<11>2014 17:10 May 17, 2016 Jkt 238001 internal evaluation panel, the date of which will be published on NIFA’s Commodity Boards Web page at (http:// nifa.usda.gov/commodity-boards/). Done at Washington, DC this 12th day of May, 2016. Sonny Ramaswamy, Director, National Institute of Food and Agriculture. [FR Doc. 2016–11705 Filed 5–17–16; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 3410–22–P DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE Foreign-Trade Zones Board [B–35–2016] Foreign-Trade Zone 244—Riverside, California; Application for Reorganization; (Expansion of Service Area); Under Alternative Site Framework An application has been submitted to the Foreign-Trade Zones (FTZ) Board by the March Joint Powers Authority, grantee of Foreign-Trade Zone 244, requesting authority to reorganize the zone to expand its service area under the alternative site framework (ASF) adopted by the FTZ Board (15 CFR Sec. 400.2(c)). The ASF is an option for grantees for the establishment or reorganization of zones and can permit significantly greater flexibility in the designation of new subzones or ‘‘usagedriven’’ FTZ sites for operators/users located within a grantee’s ‘‘service area’’ in the context of the FTZ Board’s standard 2,000-acre activation limit for a zone. The application was submitted pursuant to the Foreign-Trade Zones Act, as amended (19 U.S.C. 81a–81u), and the regulations of the FTZ Board (15 CFR part 400). It was formally docketed on May 12, 2016. FTZ 244 was approved by the FTZ Board on August 21, 2000 (Board Order 1104, 65 FR 54196, September 7, 2000) and reorganized under the ASF on May 13, 2011 (Board Order 1761, 76 FR 29725, May 23, 2011). The zone currently has a service area that includes western Riverside County, California. The applicant is now requesting authority to expand the service area of the zone to include the City of Lake Elsinore, as described in the application. If approved, the grantee would be able to serve sites throughout the expanded service area based on companies’ needs for FTZ designation. The application indicates that the proposed expanded service area is adjacent to the Los Angeles/Long Beach PO 00000 Frm 00003 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 U.S. Customs and Border Protection Port of Entry. In accordance with the FTZ Board’s regulations, Christopher Kemp of the FTZ Staff is designated examiner to evaluate and analyze the facts and information presented in the application and case record and to report findings and recommendations to the FTZ Board. Public comment is invited from interested parties. Submissions shall be addressed to the FTZ Board’s Executive Secretary at the address below. The closing period for their receipt is July 18, 2016. Rebuttal comments in response to material submitted during the foregoing period may be submitted during the subsequent 15-day period to August 1, 2016. A copy of the application will be available for public inspection at the Office of the Executive Secretary, Foreign-Trade Zones Board, Room 21013, U.S. Department of Commerce, 1401 Constitution Avenue NW., Washington, DC 20230–0002, and in the ‘‘Reading Room’’ section of the FTZ Board’s Web site, which is accessible via www.trade.gov/ftz. For further information, contact Christopher Kemp at Christopher.Kemp@trade.gov or (202) 482–0862. Dated: May 12, 2016. Andrew McGilvray, Executive Secretary. [FR Doc. 2016–11739 Filed 5–17–16; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 3510–DS–P DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE International Trade Administration [A–351–838] Certain Frozen Warmwater Shrimp From Brazil: Rescission of Antidumping Duty Administrative Review; 2015–2016 Enforcement and Compliance, International Trade Administration, Department of Commerce. SUMMARY: The Department of Commerce (the Department) is rescinding the administrative review of the antidumping duty order on certain frozen warmwater shrimp from Brazil for the period February 1, 2015, through January 31, 2016. DATES: Effective May 18, 2016. FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Kate Johnson or Terre Keaton Stefanova, Enforcement and Compliance, International Trade Administration, U.S. Department of Commerce, 14th Street and Constitution Avenue NW., Washington, DC 20230; telephone: (202) AGENCY: E:\FR\FM\18MYN1.SGM 18MYN1

Agencies

[Federal Register Volume 81, Number 96 (Wednesday, May 18, 2016)]
[Notices]
[Pages 31224-31226]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Publishing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 2016-11705]


-----------------------------------------------------------------------

DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE

National Institute of Food and Agriculture


Solicitation of Commodity Board Topics and Contribution of 
Funding Under the Agriculture and Food Research Initiative Competitive 
Grants Program

AGENCY: National Institute of Food and Agriculture, USDA.

ACTION: Notice of opportunity for commodity boards to submit topics and 
contribute funding under the Agriculture and Food Research Initiative 
Competitive Grants Program.

-----------------------------------------------------------------------

SUMMARY: As part of the National Institute of Food and Agriculture's 
(NIFA) strategy to implement section 7404 of Public Law 113-79, the 
Agricultural Act of 2014, NIFA is soliciting topics from eligible 
commodity board entities (Federal and State-level commodity boards, as 
defined below) which they are willing to equally co-fund with NIFA. 
Such topics must relate to the established priority areas of the 
Agriculture and Food Research Initiative Competitive Grants Program 
(AFRI) to be considered for inclusion in future AFRI Requests for 
Applications (RFAs).
    Commodity boards are those entities established under a commodity 
promotion law (as such term is defined under section 501(a) of the 
Federal Agriculture Improvement and Reform Act of 1996 (7 U.S.C. 
7401(a)) or a State commodity board (or other equivalent State entity). 
See the ``Supplementary Information'' section of this Notice under the 
heading ``Eligibility for Submitting Topics'' for further information.
    If proposed topics are accepted for inclusion in an AFRI RFA after 
evaluation by NIFA, they will be incorporated into AFRI competitive 
grants program RFAs. As a condition of funding grants in a topic, NIFA 
will require an agreement with the commodity board to provide funds 
that are equal to the amount NIFA is contributing under the agreed upon 
topic.
    This Notice invites topic submissions from commodity boards as 
defined above, outlines the process NIFA will use to evaluate the 
appropriateness of these topics for inclusion in AFRI RFAs, and 
describes the commitment commodity boards will be required to make in 
order for NIFA to jointly fund AFRI applications competitively selected 
for award within a topic area submitted by the commodity boards.

DATES: Topics may be submitted by commodity boards at any time; 
however, all topics to be considered for the fiscal year 2017 AFRI RFAs 
must be received by 5:00 p.m., EDT on July 18, 2016. Topics submitted 
by eligible commodity board entities after this date will be considered 
for RFAs to be issued in future years. NIFA will hold a webinar and 
workshop to respond to questions from commodity boards interested in 
submitting topics. Details including the date and time, and access 
information will be posted on the NIFA Web site (http://nifa.usda.gov/commodity-boards/).

ADDRESSES: You may submit topics, identified by NIFA-2016-0001, by the 
following method:
    Email: commodityboards@nifa.usda.gov.
    Instructions: Include NIFA-2016-0001 in the subject line of the 
message. The topic submission must be attached to the email using the 
template located at http://nifa.usda.gov/commodity-boards/. All topics 
received must include the agency name and reference

[[Page 31225]]

to NIFA-2016-0001. Topics submitted by email will not be posted to a 
public site.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Mark Mirando; Phone: (202) 401-4336, 
or Robert Hedberg; Phone: (202) 720-5384, or Email: 
commodityboards@nifa.usda.gov.

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

Background and Purpose

    This Notice begins the second topic submission cycle to implement 
section 7404 of the Agricultural Act of 2014, Public Law 113-79, which 
amends section 2(b) of the Competitive, Special, and Facilities 
Research Grant Act (7 U.S.C. 450i(b)) to require that NIFA ``establish 
procedures, including timelines, under which an entity established 
under a commodity promotion law (as such term is defined under section 
501(a) of the Federal Agriculture Improvement and Reform Act of 1996 (7 
U.S.C. 7401(a)) or a State commodity board (or other equivalent State 
entity) may directly submit to the Secretary [(NIFA)] for consideration 
proposals for requests for applications . . .'' within the AFRI 
Program.
    Stakeholder feedback gathered as a result of the September 2014 
Notice and during the initial year of implementation (in fiscal year 
2016) informed this Notice and the process NIFA is using to implement 
section 7404. This Notice invites entities established under a 
commodity promotion law or State commodity boards (or other equivalent 
State entities) to submit topics which they are proposing for inclusion 
in upcoming AFRI RFAs in fiscal year 2017. Topics must relate to the 
established AFRI priority areas, which are plant health and production 
and plant products; animal health and production and animal products; 
food safety, nutrition, and health; bioenergy, natural resources, and 
environment; agriculture systems and technology; and agriculture 
economics and rural communities. A summary statement on AFRI is 
included below. To learn more about AFRI programs, including program 
priorities, typical award budget amounts, and examples of RFAs, please 
visit: http://nifa.usda.gov/commodity-boards.

AFRI Program Overview

    The AFRI program is the largest agricultural competitive grants 
program in the United States and a primary funding source for research, 
education, and extension projects that bring practical solutions to 
some of today's most critical societal challenges. AFRI programs impact 
all components of agriculture, including farm and ranch efficiency and 
profitability, bioenergy, forestry, aquaculture, rural communities, 
human nutrition, food safety, biotechnology, and genetic improvement of 
plants and animals.
    In FY 2017, NIFA will issue at least seven AFRI RFAs to solicit 
applications in the six statutory priority areas in AFRI (Plant health 
and production and plant products; Animal health and production and 
animal products; Food safety, nutrition, and health; Bioenergy, natural 
resources, and environment; Agriculture systems and technology; 
Agriculture economics and rural communities). It is anticipated that 
these will include five Challenge Area RFAs, which address the 
following major societal challenges: Sustainable Bioenergy; Climate 
Variability and Change; Water for Food Production Systems; Childhood 
Obesity Prevention; and Food Safety. The Challenge Area RFAs solicit 
grant applications for focused problem-solving efforts and provide 
large awards (typically $1 million or more) for periods of up to 5 
years to enable collaboration among multiple organizations and the 
integration of research with education and/or extension. The sixth RFA 
is the Foundational Program RFA issued annually which solicits grant 
applications that focus predominately, but not exclusively, on 
fundamental scientific research that addresses statutory priorities. 
The final RFA is the AFRI Food, Agriculture, Natural Resources, and 
Human Sciences Education and Literacy Initiative (ELI) RFA which 
solicits grant applications for undergraduate research and extension 
experiential learning fellowships, and pre- and post-doctoral 
fellowships.

Eligibility for Submitting Topics

    Eligible commodity board entities are those established under a 
commodity promotion law (as such term is defined under section 501(a) 
of the Federal Agriculture Improvement and Reform Act of 1996 (7 U.S.C. 
7401(a))) or a State commodity board (or other equivalent State 
entity). Language in 7 U.S.C. 7401(a) defines a ``commodity promotion 
law'' as ``a Federal law that provides for the establishment and 
operation of a promotion program regarding an agricultural commodity 
that includes a combination of promotion, research, industry 
information, or consumer information activities, is funded by mandatory 
assessments on producers or processors, and is designed to maintain or 
expand markets and uses for the commodity (as determined by the 
Secretary).'' Section 7401(a) includes a list of such Federal laws.
    A current list of approved entities is maintained at (http://nifa.usda.gov/commodity-boards). Additionally, entities eligible to 
submit topics include a State commodity board (or other equivalent 
State entity). This includes commodity boards authorized by State law; 
commodity boards that are not authorized by State law but are organized 
and operate within a State and meet the requirements of their 
authorizing statute; and commodity boards that are authorized by a 
State and operate within the State for commodities that have no Federal 
program or oversight.

Topic Submission Guidance and Procedures

    Topics may be submitted at any time and will be evaluated by NIFA 
on an annual basis. However, to be considered for the proposed fiscal 
year 2017 AFRI RFAs, topics must be received by COB (5 p.m. Eastern 
Daylight Time) on July 18, 2016.
    Each topic proposed must be submitted using the template provided 
at: http://nifa.usda.gov/commodity-boards. Commodity boards may propose 
support for multiple awards for each topic proposed. For each topic the 
commodity board proposes to support, the minimum amount contributed by 
the commodity board must align with budget guidance for each AFRI area 
(http://nifa.usda.gov/commodity-boards) and comply with the maximum 
amount of $2.5 million allowed per topic. NIFA does not intend to match 
funding from a single commodity board in excess of $10 million in any 
year. Commodity boards should only submit topics that have a strong 
economic impact on their industry and U.S. agriculture as a whole. 
Examples of topics typically supported by AFRI can be found at http://nifa.usda.gov/commodity-boards.
    If topics are accepted for funding, they will be incorporated into 
AFRI RFAs, and grants supporting the topic area may be awarded to AFRI 
eligible entities based on a competitive peer review process. As a 
condition of funding grants in a topic, NIFA will require an agreement 
to provide funds by the commodity board that is equal to the amount 
NIFA is contributing under the agreed upon topic. If a topic is 
selected for inclusion in an RFA, the commodity board submitting the 
topic will be required to maintain the confidentiality of the topic 
until the RFA is issued by NIFA. Commodity board funds must be made 
available to NIFA no later than the time awards are

[[Page 31226]]

selected for funding. The grants will be fully funded at the beginning 
of the award, thus requiring that all commodity board funds and NIFA 
funds be available at the time of the award. Applications submitted 
under topics provided by commodity boards will be required to include a 
letter of support from the commodity board that proposed the topic.

Evaluation and Notification Process

    NIFA will screen proposed research topics to ensure they were 
submitted by eligible commodity boards and consult with USDA's 
Agricultural Marketing Service (AMS) to determine that submissions and 
proposed financial contributions are consistent with commodity 
promotion laws and commodity boards' charters as applicable.
    Commodity board topics will be reviewed by an internal panel based 
on evaluation criteria that were developed using stakeholder input from 
commodity boards and other stakeholders from government, industry, and 
academe. Each topic will be evaluated based on: Alignment with one or 
more of the statutory AFRI priority areas (six AFRI priority areas 
authorized in the Farm Bill and described in 7 CFR 3430.309); alignment 
with the President's budget proposal for NIFA, as identified in the 
Department of Agriculture's annual budget submission; and alignment 
with the priority areas in the AFRI RFAs to be released by NIFA during 
the fiscal year for which the commodity board is proposing a topic for 
funding (for example, within the AFRI Foundational Program RFA, the 
AFRI Animal Health and Production and Animal Product's ``Animal 
Reproduction'' priority area).
    From those topics received by COB (5 p.m. Eastern Daylight Time) on 
July 18, 2016, NIFA will select the topic(s) that were evaluated 
favorably for inclusion in the appropriate FY 2017 AFRI RFA. NIFA will 
notify commodity boards whether their topics will be included by August 
16, 2016. Based on the evaluation, NIFA reserves the right to negotiate 
with commodity boards should changes be required for topics and funding 
amounts to be accepted. Any changes to topics and funding amounts will 
be reviewed by USDA's AMS to determine if such changes are consistent 
with applicable commodity promotion laws.
    NIFA will evaluate topics submitted after the July 18, 2016 
deadline on an annual basis and notify commodity boards whether their 
topics will be included in subsequent RFAs within two weeks following 
the meeting of the internal evaluation panel, the date of which will be 
published on NIFA's Commodity Boards Web page at (http://nifa.usda.gov/commodity-boards/).

    Done at Washington, DC this 12th day of May, 2016.
Sonny Ramaswamy,
Director, National Institute of Food and Agriculture.
[FR Doc. 2016-11705 Filed 5-17-16; 8:45 am]
 BILLING CODE 3410-22-P