John Hageman, Forum News Service
GRAND FORKS -- When Mark Rustad heard Monday morning that the roof of an apartment building he helps oversee may have blown off during an overnight storm, he thought it was an exaggeration. "There was not a leaf on the ground in my neighborhood," said Rustad, who lives near Ralph Engelstad Arena on the other side of town from Cambridge Property Management's apartments in the 2300 block of South 12th Street.
BISMARCK—The battle for one of North Dakota's U.S. Senate seats didn't end when former Gov. William Langer was elected in 1940. When Langer, a Republican, showed up in the Washington, D.C., to be sworn in early 1941, he was informed that a group of North Dakotan citizens had petitioned for him to be denied the seat. They cited his "financial misconduct" as governor for grounds for denial, and a majority of committee members reviewing Langer's actions later agreed.
FARGO—Political campaigns can often be described as a war of words. In the race for the North Dakota governor's office, it seems one word has already received some debate: deficit. An ad for Fargo businessman and Republican candidate Doug Burgum, who is running in the June primary against Attorney General Wayne Stenehjem, describes North Dakota's budget woes as a $1.1 billion "deficit." Stenehjem pushed back against that term, and a February Office of Management and Budget report referred to the fiscal situation as a "revenue shortfall."
GRAND FORKS—A recent Moody's Analytics report warns North Dakota could be headed for "full-blown recession," but a University of North Dakota economics professor dampened any dire predictions about the state's economy. The report cites drops in oil prices and employment reductions outside of the state's metro areas as reasons it lists the state's business cycle as "at risk." The current estimated oil price in North Dakota is $27, the lowest since late 2008. "The weight of the historic drop in oil prices has finally become too much for the North Dakota economy to bear," the Moody's repo
GRAND FORKS—A month after it was reached, some members of the North Dakota and Minnesota congressional delegations are still mulling whether to support the deal to curb Iran's nuclear program in exchange for lifting international sanctions. But some, such as U.S. Sen. John Hoeven, R-N.D., have already made a decision.
GRAND FORKS—A northeast North Dakota landowner is one step closer to appealing his case to the state Supreme Court after a hearing over a crude oil pipeline that's slated to run through his property. James Botsford appeared Tuesday in Grand Forks County District Court with his wife, Krista. The Wisconsin couple was sued last year by North Dakota Pipeline Co.
GRAND FORKS—Kylie Oversen was a University of North Dakota student senator who proposed spending up to $2,800 to study cleaning up the "infamous" and occasionally foul-smelling coulee on campus in one of the first times she was mentioned in the Grand Forks newspaper. That was 2010.
BISMARCK—Some North Dakota lawmakers and regulators say they have mixed feelings about how legislators addressed rail safety over the past four months. This past session is the first time the Legislature convened since the derailment and explosion of tank cars carrying crude oil outside of Casselton, N.D., which put the issue on the minds of those living along the tracks. The Legislature included more than $500,000 for a state rail safety program to supplement the federal government's inspection duties.
GRAND FORKS -- The Grand Forks County Sheriff said Wednesday a bill that would require law enforcement in North Dakota to obtain a warrant before using unmanned aircraft for surveillance appears to be a "solution in search of a problem." Sheriff Bob Rost said no action was taken on the bill by the House Judiciary Committee because testimony didn't conclude Wednesday. An audio tape of the hearing wasn't available Wednesday evening. The bill, as introduced by state Rep.
GRAND FORKS -- A bill introduced in the North Dakota Legislature that would require police to get a warrant before using an unmanned aircraft for surveillance is facing opposition from a local law enforcement official. The proposal, House Bill 1328, would prohibit law enforcement agencies from using an unmanned aircraft to surveil people, as well as business or personal property, without first obtaining a warrant in order to gather evidence of criminal activity. Warrants to conduct surveillance with unmanned aerial systems could only be issued in the investigation of a felony, and not "misde