Horizontal Line Assessment of the National Agricultural Library and Recommendations for Revitalization
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Assessment

A task force was appointed in September 2000 to assess the National Agricultural Library (NAL) in pursuit of its legislated mandate to serve as the chief agricultural information resource of the United States1. The task force conducted an extensive study of the mission, management, programs and operations of the NAL. Study methods included stakeholder surveys, comparisons with other national library operations, and internal reviews. Task Force findings were issued in the "Report on the National Agricultural Library 2001." Through this report the task force laid a foundation for substantive recommendations to the Department for the revitalization of NAL, an important information resource for the food, fiber, and agriculture enterprise.
 
The task force report is available at: www.nal.usda.gov/assessment/

Public Comment

The National Agricultural Research, Extension, Education, and Economics Advisory Board (The Board) advises the Department of Agriculture and its land-grant university partners on relevant policies and priorities and their effectiveness. The Board also provides customer input in strategic planning for the USDA Research, Education, and Economics mission area.
 
The Board operates under the authority of the Federal Advisory Committee Act2 (FACA) which requires broad public input in the development of consensus recommendations. To this end, the report was made available for 30-days of public comment. One hundred and nine comments were received from a wide range of customers and stakeholders. The comments were summarized, analyzed and submitted to the Advisory Board for their consideration.
 
The report on public comments is available at: www.nal.usda.gov/assessment/comments/title_page.html

Recommendations

At the request of USDA's Under Secretary for Research, Education, and Economics, the National Agricultural Research, Extension, Education, and Economics Advisory Board reviewed the "Report on the National Agricultural Library 2001." The Board issued recommendations based on collective review of the Report together with the results of thirty days of public comment, which concluded on September 16, 2002, and information gathered from other sources.
 
The Board issued recommendations which were sent to the Secretary of Agriculture and to Congressional Agriculture committee chairs.
 
The recommendations are available at: www.nal.usda.gov/assessment/comments/advisory.html
 
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1"Food, Agriculture, Conservation and Trade Act of 1990" codified at 7 USCS 3125a (Back1)
241 CFR Parts 101-6 and 102-3 Federal Advisory Committee Management; Final Rule(Back2)
 
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Last Updated February 7, 2003