Mike Nowatzki reports for Forum News Service. He can be reached at (701) 255-5607.
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BISMARCK – North Dakota regulators unanimously granted a route permit Wednesday for what will be the largest crude oil pipeline out of the state’s fruitful Bakken oil field, leaving Iowa as the only state left to approve the 1,168-mile Dakota Access Pipeline.
BISMARCK — As battles loom within the Republican Party over endorsements for a number of statewide and legislative contests, including a three-way race for governor, the state GOP chairman is urging unity when the dust settles. "We're going to fight. We're going to debate. We're going to have vigorous conversations, and there's going to be people competing against other Republicans for slots," chairman Kelly Armstrong said Tuesday during a party luncheon in Bismarck, hours before GOP district conventions began in Fargo.
BISMARCK, N.D. – The U.S. Supreme Court on Tuesday refused to review Arkansas’ ban on abortion at 12 weeks of pregnancy, setting the stage for a decision as early as next week on North Dakota’s petition for review of its six-week abortion ban that would be the strictest in the nation.
BISMARCK — In a political climate where so-called “anti-establishment” candidates such as Donald Trump and Ben Carson have enjoyed time as the Republican Party’s presidential frontrunners, some political observers in North Dakota say sentiment against the status quo may not necessarily translate to the governor’s race. Fargo entrepreneur Doug Burgum made it a three-way contest for the GOP nomination when he declared his candidacy Thursday, saying he can “change the trajectory of this state” and wants to be an elected leader and not a politician.
BISMARCK — After a steep rise that forced North Dakota to provide more help to the state medical examiner, the number of autopsies performed in North Dakota fell last year for the first time since 2007, a trend expected to continue because of the slowdown in oil activity. Department of Health officials also say they’re making progress on ways to improve the state’s system of death investigations and autopsies.
BISMARCK — With falling oil prices dimming the state's budget outlook, North Dakota lawmakers are taking their first in-depth look at whether the state should change or eliminate some tax incentives that have saved millions of dollars for businesses and investors. Industry representatives and lobbyists lined up Wednesday at the Capitol to justify to the Legislature's interim Political Subdivision Taxation Committee why the incentives should continue and how they have benefited the state through increased economic activity, jobs and lower utility rates.
BISMARCK — Legislation that shifted the cost of some social services in North Dakota from counties to the state has lowered property taxes as intended, but some lawmakers expressed reluctance Tuesday about a complete takeover and questioned whether the $150 million price tag is affordable given tumbling state revenues. "I don't know where the money's going to come from, quite honestly," said Rep. Mark Dosch, R-Bismarck. "I think Christmas is over, and I'm not sure if we're realizing that yet or not."
BISMARCK — State Superintendent of Public Instruction Kirsten Baesler announced Tuesday she will seek a second four-year term. Baesler will vie for the Republican Party's nomination at the GOP state convention April 1-3 in Fargo. Her announcement comes as no surprise, as Baesler said last April that she fully intended to run.
BISMARCK — The North Dakota Industrial Commission voted Monday to seize 800 barrels of illegally produced oil in what Department of Mineral Resources Director Lynn Helms said is believed to be a first for the regulatory panel. The commission denied an application by Denver-based Gadeco LLC to authorize the sale of the oil produced in Williams County. Helms said the oil came from a neighboring spacing unit on which Gadeco didn’t have a lease.
BISMARCK — Facing mounting criticism over the lowering of fines for oil and saltwater spills, North Dakota regulators were directed Monday to start providing written explanations of what oil companies must do in exchange for reduced fines. The state Industrial Commission met for more than an hour and a half behind closed doors with Department of Mineral Resources Director Lynn Helms and legal counsel to review six outstanding spill cases with proposed fines totaling more than $600,000.