United States Code

USC most recently checked for updates: Dec 09, 2019

§ 2279b.
Department of Agriculture educational, training, and professional development activities
(a)
Definitions
In this section:
(1)
Graduate School

The term “Graduate School” means the Graduate School of the Department of Agriculture.

(2)
Board

The term “Board” means the General Administration Board of the Graduate School.

(3)
Director

The term “Director” means the Director of the Graduate School.

(4)
Secretary

The term “Secretary” means the Secretary of Agriculture.

(b)
Operation as nonappropriated fund instrumentality
(1)
Cease operations

Not later than October 1, 2009, the Secretary of Agriculture shall cease to maintain or operate a nonappropriated fund instrumentality of the United States to develop, administer, or provide educational training and professional development activities, including educational activities for Federal agencies, Federal employees, non-profit organizations, other entities, and members of the general public.

(2)
Transition
(A)
In general

The Secretary of Agriculture is authorized to use funds available to the Department of Agriculture and such resources of the Department as the Secretary considers appropriate (including the assignment of such employees of the Department as the Secretary considers appropriate) to assist the General Administrative Board of the Graduate School in the conversion of the Graduate School to an entity that is non-governmental and not a nonappropriated fund instrumentality of the United States, including such privatization activities not otherwise inconsistent with law or regulation.

(B)
Termination of authority
The authority under paragraph (1) shall terminate on the earlier of—
(i)
the completion of the transition of the Graduate School to an entity that is non-governmental and not a nonappropriated fund instrumentality of the United States, as determined by the Secretary; or
(ii)
September 30, 2009.
(c)
Activities of Graduate School

Under the general supervision of the Secretary, the Graduate School shall develop, administer, and provide educational, training, and professional development activities, including educational activities for Federal agencies, Federal employees, nonprofit organizations, other entities, and members of the general public.

(d)
Fees and donations
(1)
Collection of fees

The Graduate School may charge and retain fair and reasonable fees for the activities provided by the Graduate School. The amount of the fees shall be based on the cost of the activities to the Graduate School.

(2)
Acceptance of donations
(A)
Acceptance and use authorized

The Graduate School may accept, use, hold, dispose, and administer gifts, bequests, and devises of money, securities, and other real or personal property made for the benefit of, or in connection with, the Graduate School.

(B)
Exception

The Graduate School shall not accept a donation from a person that is actively engaged in a procurement activity with the Graduate School or has an interest that may be substantially affected by the performance or nonperformance of an official duty of a member of the Board or an employee of the Graduate School.

(3)
Not Federal funds

Fees collected under paragraph (1) and amounts received under paragraph (2) shall not be considered to be Federal funds and shall not be required to be deposited in the Treasury of the United States.

(e)
General Administration Board and Director
(1)
Appointment as governing board

The Secretary shall appoint a General Administration Board to serve as a governing board for the Graduate School and to supervise and direct the activities of the Graduate School. The Board shall be subject to regulation by the Secretary.

(2)
Duties of Board
The Board shall—
(A)
formulate broad policies in accordance with which the Graduate School shall be administered;
(B)
take all steps necessary to ensure that the highest possible educational standards are maintained by the Graduate School;
(C)
exercise general supervision over the administration of the Graduate School; and
(D)
establish such bylaws, rules, and procedures as may be necessary for the fulfillment of the duties described in subparagraphs (A), (B), and (C).
(3)
Appointment of Director and other officers

The Board shall select a Director and such other officers as the Board considers necessary to administer the Graduate School. The Director and other officers shall serve on such terms and perform such duties as the Board may prescribe.

(4)
Duties of Director

The Director shall be responsible, subject to the supervision and direction of the Board, for carrying out the functions of the Graduate School.

(5)
Borrowing and investment authority
The Board may authorize the Director—
(A)
to borrow money on the credit of the Graduate School; and
(B)
to invest funds held in excess of the current operating requirements of the Graduate School for purposes of maintaining a reasonable reserve.
(6)
Liability

The Director and the members of the Board shall not be held personally liable for any loss or damage that may accrue to the funds of the Graduate School as the result of any act or exercise of discretion performed in carrying out their duties under this section.

(f)
Employees

Employees of the Graduate School are employees of a nonappropriated fund instrumentality and shall not be considered to be Federal employees.

(g)
Not a Federal agency
The Graduate School shall not be considered to be a Federal agency for purposes of—
(1)
the Federal Advisory Committee Act (5 U.S.C. App.);
(2)
section 552 or 552a of title 5; or
(3)
chapter 171 of title 28.
(h)
Acquisition and disposal of property
In order to carry out the activities of the Graduate School, the Graduate School may—
(1)
acquire real property in the District of Columbia and in other places by lease, purchase, or otherwise;
(2)
maintain, enlarge, or remodel any such property;
(3)
have sole control of any such property; and
(4)
dispose of real and personal property without regard to chapters 1 to 11 of title 40 and division C (except sections 3302, 3307(e), 3501(b), 3509, 3906, 4710, and 4711) of subtitle I of title 41.
(i)
Contract authority

The Graduate School may enter into contracts without regard to chapters 1 to 11 of title 40 and division C (except sections 3302, 3307(e), 3501(b), 3509, 3906, 4710, and 4711) of subtitle I of title 41 or any other law that prescribes procedures for the procurement of property or services by an executive agency.

(j)
Use of Department facilities and resources

The Graduate School may use the facilities and resources of the Department of Agriculture, on the condition that any costs incurred by the Department that are attributable solely to Graduate School operations and all costs incurred by the Graduate School arising out of such operations shall be paid using funds of the Graduate School. Federal funds may not be used to pay the costs.

(k)
Audits of records

The financial records of the Graduate School (including records relating to contracts or agreements entered into under subsection (c)) shall be made available to the Comptroller General for purposes of conducting an audit.

(Pub. L. 104–127, title IX, § 921, Apr. 4, 1996, 110 Stat. 1191; Pub. L. 107–171, title X, § 10705(a), May 13, 2002, 116 Stat. 518; Pub. L. 110–234, title XIV, § 14213(a), May 22, 2008, 122 Stat. 1465; Pub. L. 110–246, § 4(a), title XIV, § 14213(a), June 18, 2008, 122 Stat. 1664, 2227.)
cite as: 7 USC 2279b