Mike Nowatzki reports for Forum News Service. He can be reached at (701) 255-5607.
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BISMARCK — After being criticized for a series of power outages last spring in Fargo, Xcel Energy has unveiled a $5.3 million plan for improving reliability to its North Dakota customers, but is still debating how to recover the cost from customers. Xcel presented the plan Wednesday to the state Public Service Commission, which called an informal hearing last month after the Minneapolis-based utility experienced eight outages in Fargo between April 22 and May 13 affecting more than 24,000 customers. The company hasn't had a feeder outage in Fargo since then.
BISMARCK — A top official with the North Dakota Republican Party said Friday the state needs a higher threshold for legislative and statewide candidates to advance from the June primary election, after a number of Democrats narrowly made the cut last week. To advance to the November ballot, primary candidates must receive at least as many votes as the number of petition signatures required to get on the primary ballot, which is based on 1 percent of the total population of the legislative district.
BISMARCK — A North Dakota Department of Health employee who was fired after complaining about sexual harassment in the workplace is suing the agency in federal court for retaliation, and a $40,000 settlement was reached with another employee who claimed age discrimination and retaliation. The lawsuit brought by former autopsy assistant Ranae Kunz claims she suffered loss of income, mental anguish, emotional distress and other damages in excess of $75,000. She's also seeking unspecified punitive damages and attorneys' fees.
BISMARCK — Concerns about a possible repeat of a 2011 landslide in western North Dakota led state utility regulators to approve a route change Wednesday for the $3.7 billion Dakota Access pipeline project. Construction is underway in North Dakota, South Dakota, Iowa and Illinois on the 1,168-mile pipeline, which will move Bakken crude to a hub in Patoka, Ill., with a capacity of up to 570,000 barrels per day. North Dakota's portion of the pipeline will snake about 350 miles across seven counties and account for $1.4 billion of the cost.
BISMARCK -- Gov. Jack Dalrymple on Tuesday reappointed Microsoft executive Don Morton of Fargo to a second four-year term on the state Board of Higher Education. The governor also picked North Dakota State University senior Nick Evans for a one-year term as the board's student member. Evans will replace University of North Dakota student Brett Johnson, whose term on the eight-member board expires June 30. Both appointments are effective July 1. Morton, the site leader at Microsoft's Fargo campus, has done "an outstanding job," Dalrymple said in a statement.
BISMARCK -- The Ward County Commission on Tuesday appointed a temporary replacement for Sheriff Steven Kukowski, whose suspension by Gov. Jack Dalrymple last week was delayed after county officials raised questions about the process. "The things that were in question were taken of, we believe," chairman John Fjeldahl said by phone after the meeting in Minot. Kukowski will serve his suspension with pay until misdemeanor charges against him related to the death of an inmate and management of the Ward County Jail are resolved, commissioners decided Tuesday.
BISMARCK – North Dakota Democrats have selected 13 delegates for Bernie Sanders and five delegates for Hillary Clinton to attend the party’s presidential nominating convention next month. The 18 pledged...
BISMARCK -- Gov. Jack Dalrymple has suspended Ward County Sheriff Steven Kukowski until a criminal case against him involving the death of an inmate is resolved, but Kukowski is exploring his options, his attorney said Thursday. Special Prosecutor Seymour Jordan charged Kukowski in February with two misdemeanor counts of reckless endangerment and one misdemeanor count of refusing to perform his public duty related to management of the Ward County Jail.
WASHBURN, N.D. -- Organizers secured land Friday for the proposed Theodore Roosevelt Presidential Library and Museum at Dickinson State University. Now they just need the money. The state Board of Higher Education unanimously approved a 99-year lease in which the library's foundation agrees to pay the state $1 a year for 27.6 acres now occupied by the DSU rodeo grounds, which are being relocated to south of Dickinson.
WASHBURN, N.D. -- State Board of Higher Education members postponed action Friday on contracts and raises for campus presidents to give themselves more time to digest a dismal report on the state's tax revenues and budget situation and to work on a new policy for evaluating presidents.