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Senate rejects plan to remove State Hospital from Constitution


BISMARCK — The North Dakota Senate overwhelmingly rejected a resolution that would have, if approved by voters, removed the State Hospital from the state Constitution Tuesday, Jan. 10.

The change would have struck language from a section of the North Dakota Constitution that lists the State Hospital in Jamestown as one of the public institutions “permanently located” across the state. The resolution would have put the change to voters in 2018.

Sen. Tim Mathern, D-Fargo, was one of only three senators to support the legislation. He said behavioral health services are needed throughout the state.

Mathern emphasized the resolution would not close the State Hospital, which he said was “needed.”

But Sen. Brad Bekkedahl, R-Williston, said legislators who heard the proposal in a committee meeting didn’t want to put the hospital at risk for closure.