Charly Haley covers city government for the Grand Forks Herald. As night reporter, she also has many general assignments. Before working at the Herald, she was a reporter at the Jamestown Sun and interned at The Forum of Fargo-Moorhead, Detroit Lakes Newspapers and the St. Cloud Times. Haley is a graduate of Minnesota State University Moorhead, and her hometown is Sartell, Minn.
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GRAND FORKS, N.D. -- The North Valley Arts Council board of directors had questioned former executive director Marie Strinden about the nonprofit's finances the day before she submitted her resignation Aug. 28. Also, the Grand Forks Herald discovered errors in NoVAC financial statements obtained through an open records request. Minutes from an Aug.
MINOT — Carrie Welnel has a “zombie list.” It’s a list of houses in Minot that were damaged by the 2011 Souris River flood and then left abandoned and unrepaired, earning them the name “zombie homes” among Minot residents. As director of the Minot Area Community Land Trust, Welnel has her eye on those houses, looking to rebuild them into affordable homes. Community land trusts are organizations that develop houses and then sell them for the cost of the house, but the land trust retains ownership of the land.
MINOT — Dennis Roerick remembers it as the worst Father’s Day of his life. It was June 19, 2011, when he and his wife, JoAnn, heard warnings on the 10 p.m. news about the rising Souris River. The river, expected to crest higher than the city’s levees could handle, put the Roericks’ home, nestled in Minot’s Souris River Valley, in jeopardy. Days later, the Roericks, like thousands of other Minot residents, rushed to evacuate their homes in the wake of a record-breaking flood.
GRAND FORKS — After a day-long union meeting, employees of J.R. Simplot went on strike, picketing outside the potato processing plant in Grand Forks about 6 p.m. Monday. The strike came shortly after an employee vote to reject the company’s contract offer, which included longer shifts and altered benefits, union officials said. The vote was 108 to 37. The proposed 12-hour shifts — 7 a.m. to 7 p.m.
GRAND FORKS — Since federal regulations prevent University of North Dakota students from flying unmanned aircraft systems outdoors, the university has had to find creative ways for students studying UAS to practice. The Federal Aviation Administration bans commercial use of UAS, commonly known as drones.
FINLEY, N.D. — One of Sherry Midstokke’s two court-ordered mental evaluations states that she was competent when she allegedly murdered her husband at their Finley home in February, according to her lawyer. Attorney Blake Hankey said he and his colleagues still believe the 61-year-old was mentally ill at the time of the alleged murder.
Officers responded to a house fire caused by lightning strike in Northwood, N.D., about 3:30 p.m. Sunday. A lightning strike near the home at 216 North Adam Street traveled through the ground and hit the house’s circuit breaker or furnace, causing a fire to start, said Police Chief Stan Baker, of the Northwood Police Department. No one was home at the time of the fire, which was called in by someone attending a graduation party at the home next door, Baker said. The party was evacuated but then was able to return inside almost immediately, he said.
GRAND FORKS — President Barack Obama is planning to visit a North Dakota Indian reservation next month, The Washington Post is reporting. Officials from Turtle Mountain and Spirit Lake Indian reservations said they haven’t heard anything from the White House but would welcome Obama if he were visiting. U.S. Sens.
GRAND FORKS — While the city regularly maintains its flood protection system, eventually the need for more significant fixes will arise. The English Coulee Diversion Channel is already starting to erode, and Assistant City Engineer Mark Walker said the city expects in the coming years to do several preventive maintenance projects. “We’ve got pumps and gates and all these things that are eventually going to need upgrades,” Walker said.
GRAND FORKS — Blizzard Gigi may have made for an unusually wintery March 31, but the storm was just what last month needed for “normal” precipitation, if not temperatures. Like the rest of this winter, last month was much colder than normal, and Blizzard Gigi didn’t help with that, said Bill Barrett, meteorologist with the National Weather Service office in Grand Forks. March was, on average, “about 7 to 8 degrees colder than normal,” he said.