Mike Nowatzki reports for Forum News Service. He can be reached at (701) 255-5607.
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BISMARCK—The chairman of a group that wants to legalize medical marijuana in North Dakota said they will submit a petition Tuesday to the Secretary of State's Office for approval so they can start gathering signatures to try to put the measure to voters next year. Rilie Ray Morgan, a financial adviser from Fargo, said he's optimistic about the measure's chances, despite state lawmakers snuffing out a similar bill in February. "Even though we are a conservative state, I think most of the voters in this state would view this as an alternative to prescription drugs that we know are harm
BISMARCK — North Dakota Attorney General Wayne Stenehjem will make an official announcement before Thanksgiving about his intentions on running for governor next year, he said Monday. Stenehjem said he is putting together a campaign advisory committee, in addition to the "Stenehjem for Governor Exploratory Committee" he created last month to accept unsolicited campaign contributions from supporters. He said has received more than $40,000 in contributions so far, "a lot for not having asked one person." Republican state Rep.
BISMARCK—An abandoned pit that was used to store oil drilling mud and fluids nearly 50 years ago is eroding into the Little Missouri River in western North Dakota, threatening to contaminate drinking water downstream as state officials develop a cleanup plan. Department of Minerals Resources Director Lynn Helms told a legislative committee this week that the reserve pit south of Medora is "priority one" on a list of old abandoned sites targeted for reclamation using $1.5 million appropriated by state lawmakers last spring. The department has been aware of the pit for years but didn't
BISMARCK – Oil and gas development is displacing grassland birds from their habitat in North Dakota’s prolific Bakken shale region, including one candidate for listing as an endangered species, federal...
BISMARCK — A slew of overreaching federal regulations poses a bigger threat to oil and gas development in North Dakota than slumping crude prices, an industry group leader said Wednesday after updating state lawmakers on regulatory challenges confronting the industry. Drilling activity in North Dakota has dropped by nearly two-thirds in the past year, with 66 active rigs on Wednesday, down from 190 a year ago. But companies have adapted to the price slump and become more efficient, maintaining the state's daily oil production at near 1.2 million barrels a day, second only to Texas,
BISMARCK – North Dakota Attorney General Wayne Stenehjem said Wednesday he will likely ask the U.S. Supreme Court next week to review an anti-abortion law that’s been blocked by lower...
BISMARCK -- A North Dakota Department of Health employee who claims she was sexually harassed by a male co-worker is asking the federal government to issue a notice of her right to sue. The complaint comes as the state Department of Labor and Human Rights continues to investigate age discrimination and retaliation claims filed last year by two workers in the Health Department's microbiology lab — allegations that also trace back to a sexual harassment claim. In the most recent case, autopsy assistant Ranae Kunz of Bismarck filed a discrimination complaint July 13 with the U.S.
BISMARCK -- With the vote for a new University of North Dakota athletics nickname just days away, a Fargo lawmaker on Wednesday pressed new University System Chancellor Mark Hagerott on why he stood by when retiring UND President Robert Kelley kept "UND/North Dakota" off the list. Republican state Rep. Jim Kasper asked the question after Hagerott, who started in the job July 1, finished his presentation on future system strategies to the Legislature's interim Government Finance Committee. "There's a big brouhaha going on now about the UND name," Kasper said.
BISMARCK -- Job Service North Dakota saw a whopping 130 percent increase in the number of people claiming unemployment benefits in September compared with the same month last year, underscoring the ripple effect that depressed crude oil prices have had on the state's labor force. The agency counted 5,777 claimants last month, compared with 2,487 in September 2014, said Michael Ziesch, manager of the state Labor Market Information Center. "It's certainly led by those industries most closely associated with the Bakken, with oil and gas, but it is distributed across all industries.
UPDATED 2:25 PM BISMARCK — North Dakota's economy slowed down in the second quarter of this year, posting the first double-digit decrease in year-over-year taxable sales and purchases since 2009 as slumping oil prices hurt drilling and the businesses that support it. Taxable sales and purchases dropped 16 percent in the second quarter compared with the same period last year, led by a more than 31 percent decrease in the mining and oil extraction sector, state Tax Commissioner Ryan Rauschenberger said. The $5.9 billion total for April, May and June was down from $7 billion during