College of Agriculture & Natural Resources
AGNR Research

Facility Use Manual


  1. Scope of Support
    1. Resource Request Form
    2. Agronomic Related Support
    3. Horticultural Related Support
    4. Animal Related Support
    5. Special Needs
    6. Facility Labor Requests
    7. Overtime Support
  2. Research Prioritization
    1. Approved MAES and MCE Projects
    2. Other MAES and MCE Projects
    3. USDA and MDA Research Requests
    4. Other Projects
    5. Project Duration and Termination
  3. Instructional Program Support
    1. MAES Resource Request Form
    2. Waiver for Home-Based Faculty
    3. Special Facility Support
  4. Worker Protection Standards
  5. Performance Evaluations
    1. Evaluation Schedule
    2. Evaluation Committee
    3. Evaluation Summary
  6. Equipment and Supply Storage
  7. Center Office Space for MCE Personnel
  8. University of Maryland-College Park (UMCP) Use Permit
  9. MAES Pesticide Use Policy
  10. Forms
    1. MAES Resource Request Form
    2. MAES Centers Animal Use Request
    3. UMCP Facility Use Permit

The College of Agriculture and Natural Resources at the University of Maryland-College Park maintains four regional Research and Education Centers within the state. These Centers, managed by the Maryland Agricultural Experiment Station, have a dedicated mission to provide off-campus support for the research and education programs for faculty within the College of Agriculture and Natural Resources and the College of Life Sciences.

This policy addresses issues concerning research facility utilization by the aforementioned faculty and by other public and private enterprises. Its purpose is to clarify what support is provided and to establish uniformity across all Research and Education Centers in providing that support.

  1. Scope of Support

    Prior to implementation of any research project at a field site, the investigator must obtain approval for the project with the Chair's signature on the appropriate MAES Resource Request Form. Next, the investigator must discuss the proposed project with the respective facility manager/s. This discussion will allow all parties an opportunity to understand the scope of the proposed work, identify what support will or will not be provided by the research facility, and determine any special protocols that the project may have.

    1. Resource Request Form

      All requests for field resources require the submission of an MAES Resource Request Form at least one month prior to the start of the project or shorter if agreed to by the respective investigator, facility manager, and center head. Failure to submit the request form may delay commencement of the project. The resource request form is a written record of the research protocol for the facility's reference during the study.

    2. Agronomic Related Support - Support for agronomic related research includes land; equipment and labor for tillage, planting, crop protection, and harvesting; seed; fertilizer and lime to provide basic plant nutrition; and pesticides for basic crop protection.
    3. Horticultural Related Support - Support for horticultural related research includes land; equipment and labor for tillage, planting, harvesting, in-season and off-season crop protection and maintenance; fertilizer and lime to provide basic plant nutrition; and pesticides for basic crop protection.
    4. Animal Related Support - Animal research projects are supplied animals; basic feedstuffs; animal housing and support buildings, medicines, bedding; and necessary labor to support animal research activities. In the case of poultry research, the supply and disposal of birds for each project is arranged by the scientist.
    5. Special Needs - Any special treatments (determined in discussions between the investigator, facility manager, and center head prior to the onset of the project) that require special seed or plant materials, special fertilizers, special pesticides, special feed ingredients, special animal antibiotics or other medicines, special animal handling procedures requiring additional labor inputs, specialized equipment, specialized attachments to equipment, or alterations to equipment are to be funded by the faculty member or department proposing the research.
    6. Facility Labor Requests - Labor requests for non-routine data collection, specialized treatment applications, or specialized animal operations must be addressed with the respective Facility Manager and Center Head prior to the onset of the project. Labor availability for these purposes will be assigned at the discretion of the Manager and dependent upon the abilities of the technicians. Training of the technicians to handle special aspects of the project must be completed by the principal investigator.
    7. Overtime Support - If a project requires overtime support, a discussion with the Facility-Manager about that need is necessary. Any and all overtime expenditures for support of a project will be the responsibility of the project leader.
  2. Research Prioritization

    When the resources of a facility or center are limited, the following prioritization for research projects will be in effect.

    A. Approved MAES and MCE Projects- Approved MAES and MCE projects receive first priority.

    B. Other MAES and MCE Projects - Non-approved MAES and MCE research projects will be accepted in the order they are received by the Center. A non-approved MAES project must receive departmental approval followed by approval from the respective Center Head and Facility Manager. Projects conducted by either regional extension personnel or county extension personnel must receive approval from both the appropriate Regional Extension Director and the Facility Manager and Center Head where the project will be conducted. Center and Facility approval is necessary to ensure the availability of necessary resources.

    C. USDA and MDA Research Requests- Research requests made by either USDA or MDA (or similar agency) funded scientists will be given consideration. It is recommended that those requests be made as part of a collaborative research effort with MAES or MCE investigators. Where true MAES/MCE and USDA or MDA cooperation is noted, the project will be treated as per 2A. Requests that are made by USDA or MDA scientists, without an affiliation, will be required to reimburse all costs incurred by the facility. These costs will be determined via uniform research cost accounting procedures maintained by the Facility Manager.

    D. Other Projects - Requests from other University, non-University, public or private organizations will be accepted only if there are adequate resources available at the facility to support the project. Approval for these projects must be given by the respective Center Head in consultation with the respective Facility Manager. Support of such a project must not interfere with either College of Agriculture and Natural Resources or Departments of Plant Biology and Entomology based projects. Reimbursement of costs to MAES will be required and will be determined by the cost accounting maintained by the Facility Manager. Acceptance of a non-University affiliated project does not construe endorsement of the product or technique by the University.

    E. Project Duration and Termination- Each research request form requires identification of the project length so that resources can be assigned for the duration of the study. These request forms are to be completed each year of a project regardless of expected duration. In addition, investigators are required to notify the respective Facility Manager/s within one month after the completion of a project.

  3. Instructional Program Support

    The Research and Education Centers are also dedicated to supporting any instructional activities and outreach educational programs conducted by either the Academic Programs or the Extension faculty. In doing so, the following protocols are to be followed:

    A. MAES Resource Request Form - A MAES Resource Request Form is to be provided to the respective Facility Manager at least one month prior to the scheduled activity.

    B. Waiver for Home-Based Faculty - Item A can be waived if a different policy arrangement is in place for home-based faculty at a Center. This refers in particular to the use of Center conference rooms for which scheduling is generally handled by a secretary.

    C. Special Facility Support - If the class or event requires support that results in expenditure of facility funds to accommodate,
    reimbursement to the facility will be required. The amount of the reimbursement will be determined by the Facility Manager and the coordinator of the instructional and/or outreach activity prior to the activity.

  4. Worker Protection Standards (WPS)

    All faculty members, technicians, graduate and undergraduate students must abide by the Worker Protection Standards for pesticide safety and must not enter areas that are posted as pesticide treated unless wearing the appropriate protective clothing as outlined in the WPS. A central posting area for areas treated is available at each facility and should be consulted prior to entry of posted field research sites. A description of the WPS protocols at a facility can be obtained from the respective Facility Manager.

  5. Performance Evaluations

    It is a goal of the Research and Education Centers to provide quality support. In order to measure the attainment of this goal both positive and negative feedback is needed from the clientele served.

    A. Evaluation Schedule - Performance evaluations for each of the four Research and Education Centers will be done every two years, with two Centers evaluated each year.

    B. Evaluation Committee - A committee to review the performance of each Center will be appointed by the Associate Director of the Agricultural Experiment Station. Each committee shall consist of faculty representatives from the various user groups (i.e. Departments, MCE, etc.) that have activities at the respective Center.

    C. Evaluation Summary - A summary report of the evaluation shall be provided to the respective Center Heads and Facility Managers by February 1 of the year following the evaluation.

  6. Equipment and Supply Storage at Facilities

    At times there are requests by faculty members to store equipment and supplies at a facility. The following guidelines should be followed when storing property.

    A. Storage - Storage of these items must receive the approval of the respective Facility Manager.

    B. Pesticides - Pesticides stored at a facility are to comply with the MAES Policy for Pesticide Use.

    C. Storage Space - Storage space at all facilities is limited. Faculty members are requested to use discretion when requesting storage space. Supplies and equipment no longer used cannot be given storage space.

  7. Center Office Space for MCE Personnel

    A. Office Space - If office space is available, MCE personnel can be located at Research and Education Centers if they have obtained permission from their respective Department Chair or Regional Extension Director.

    B. Working Agreement - An agreement concerning maintenance and operational costs of the occupied buildings must be reached between the Center Head and the interested party with final approval by the Associate Directors of MAES and MCE.

  8. University of Maryland-College Park (UMCP) Use Permit

    Facility Use - Outside organizations occasionally request the use of a facility for activities that are not research or education oriented.Examples of these include picnics, meetings, etc. The organization requesting use must obtain a UMCP Facility Use Permit and provide its own liability coverage for its participants. The organization must be aware of and maintain strict adherence to the University's Alcohol Use Policy.
  9. MAES Pesticide Use Policy

    Each Principal Investigator (PI) must submit a hazardous/toxic substance form (MSDS) for each pesticide used or stored at a Maryland Agricultural Experiment Station (MAES) location before the substance is brought to the site. A current listing of all pesticide MSDS sheets should be maintained at each MAES site so duplication of efforts between PI's and farm managers does not occur.

    Each Principal Investigator is responsible for keeping records of their pesticide use in accordance with state and federal regulations. Under the current Worker Protection Standards (WPS), records need to be kept regarding compound(s) and quantities used, location, date and time of applications(s), environmental conditions at time of application(s), EPA registration number(s) of compound(s) used, applicator(s) name and certification number. These data should be provided to each farm manager as soon as possible after application for posting purposes.

    After application, the PI is responsible for posting requirements in accordance with Worker Protection Standards. Farm managers will supply signs.

    Each Principal Investigator will be required to supply an updated inventory of pesticides stored at each NLKES site. This inventory needs to be updated yearly with a due date of December 15.

    Pesticides should be purchased or obtained in smallest units available to reduce leftover quantities.
    Each container should be labeled with the PI's name and dated as to when it was obtained.
    Each Principal Investigator will be required to inventory their storage area yearly as discussed above and maintain a neat and orderly site. Failure to follow this may result in expulsion from the site.

    Following each yearly inventory, each PI is responsible for disposing of unwanted and/or leftover materials including rinsates. This will be done at the PI's expense.

    If materials were applied under an EUP (Experimental Use Permit), the PI is responsible for disposing of excess product, rinsate and crop residue as specified under the EUP process.

    OPERATION Each Principal Investigator is required to review the rules for use of pesticide storage, application,and posting requirements with the farm manager for every site they utilize on a yearly basis. This should be performed prior to the use season, generally by April 15.

    If the PI is planning to use MAES equipment to apply pesticides, it is their responsibility to clean and dispose of excess spray material.

    Rinsate, leftover tank-mix products and cleanup materials, made up of labeled materials are to be treated as pesticides as much as possible instead of hazardous waste. Rinsate and leftover tank-mix products should be applied to other areas with labeled crops or segregated into tanks for short term storage until it may be utilized on a labeled crop by other spraying activities. This requires that the identity, concentration and amount of material in rinsate tanks shall be maintained at all times. Material that has an unknown component, concentration or quantity cannot be utilized as a pesticide and must be handled as a hazardous waste.
    Rinsate of unlabeled or numbered compound pesticides must be segregated for spraying on labeled crop or noncrop land and/or disposed of as hazardous waste. It is the responsibility of the PI to budget an appropriate amount of money for the disposal of this material if it cannot be legally sprayed on a labeled crop or noncrop land. Temporary storage containers will be provided at each farm, but they must be emptied by December 15 of each year at the PI's expense.

    Each Principal Investigator must be certified to use pesticides and submit a copy of their Applicator's Certificate to the Associate Director of the MAES before storage or application of pesticide(s) at any MAES farm.

    Each Principal Investigator is responsible for training their own students and/or technicians as outlined under the Worker Protection Standards. All of the PI's students and/or technicians are required to work under the PI's certifcation if they are not certified to apply pesticides.

    Each Principal Investigator is responsible for supplying their own and their students and/or technicians safety equipment unless prior
    arrangements have been made with each site's Farm Manager.

    Remember, each Principal Investigator is responsible for posting their own farmland. Signs will be provided by each Farm Manager.


    A committee consisting of the Facility Managers and Faculty Representatives doing research at the MAES farms should address the development and testing of new methods and equipment to handle the operation and cleaning of application equipment and to address ways to minimize the quantity and increase the utilization of rinsate. The committee will identify specific problems and questions that require attention on N4A.F-S farms and private agricultural operations as well. The committee will assist the MAES Associate Director in developing initiatives to address any identified issues.

  10. Forms

    1. MAES Resource Request Form
    2. MAES Centers Animal Use Request
    3. UMCP Facility Use Permit
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