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What we think; Bravo to N.D.’s economic growth

The Jamestown Sun hands out these bravos and buffalo chips this week:

* Buffalo chip to the number of oil and brine spills that have been reported this year. Many barrels of oil and brine have been released.

* Bravo to President Barack Obama for visiting the Standing Rock Indian Reservation in Cannon Ball, N.D. Obama pledged to invest in American Indian youth during the first visit by a sitting president to a reservation in 15 years. And bravo to the bipartisan coalition that is willing to work on issues that affect Native American children. The coalition introduced its bill, the Alyce Spotted Bear and Walter Soboleff Commission on Native Children, to help address problems to make life better for Native American children.

* Bravo to North Dakota for producing 1 million barrels of oil per day, joining an elite club that includes Texas, Alberta and 19 countries. North Dakota joins Alaska, California, Louisiana and Texas as the only states to have ever produced 1 million barrels of oil per day. Today, Texas is the only other state producing more than 1 million barrels of oil per day, other than North Dakota.

* Buffalo chip to the multiple vehicles going off-road into the Little Missouri National Grasslands of western North Dakota. Jay Frederick, McKenzie district ranger, said he’s seen an increase in vehicles driving off roads and trails and damaging the land. Vehicles and garbage have also been burned and abandoned.

* Buffalo chip to the low voter turnout during the June 10 state and county primary election. Only 17.13 percent of eligible voters in the state cast their ballots — and bravo to those who showed up to the polls to vote.

* Bravo to North Dakota for topping all states in economic growth for the fourth consecutive year. North Dakota’s gross domestic product increased 9.7 percent last year, and its economy produced a record $49.8 billion. In the past four years, North Dakota’s economy has averaged an annual growth rate of about 12 percent compared to the national rate of 2 percent.

* Buffalo chip to those people who are discarding items they shouldn’t at the city’s compost site. Three tires, a plastic chair, a small tub of used oil, several 2-by-6 boards, a bundle of shingles, several oily rags and two computer screens were found amongst a pile of grass clippings. A two-wheeled garden cart was found in another pile of grass clippings.

(Editorials are the opinion of Jamestown Sun management and the newspaper’s editorial board)