Mike Nowatzki, Forum News Service
BISMARCK—Between the $100,000 contributions from Microsoft co-founder Bill Gates and eBay director Robert Kagle, a key sector of North Dakota's economy is noticeably absent from Fargo businessman Doug Burgum's campaign finance statements. Disclosures filed last week show no discernable contributions to Burgum from the state's energy sector, led by its robust oil and coal industries, since he jumped into the governor's race in mid-January.
BISMARCK—North Dakota teachers will rewrite the state's math and English standards in the coming months to replace the politically charged Common Core standards and set "clear and high expectations for all students," Superintendent of Public Instruction Kirsten Baesler said Tuesday. Public schools have used the current standards, developed in 2008 and based on Common Core, for the past three to six years.
BISMARCK — For the first time since 2002, North Dakota's governor will ask state agencies to propose smaller budgets for the next biennium as uncertainty looms over how soon the oil and farm sectors that drive the state's economy and tax revenues will rebound. Gov. Jack Dalrymple, who is not seeking a second four-year term in office in November, will deliver the budget guidelines at 11 a.m. Wednesday in the Capitol's Brynhild Haugland Room.
BISMARCK -- North Dakota's lowered expectations for tax revenues proved to be not low enough for the third month in a row in March, leaving the state more than $20 million short of its revised forecast and boosting the likelihood of additional budget cuts or further drawing down reserves. The $98.8 million collected in March was $13.8 million, or 12 percent, less than projected in the revised revenue forecast released Feb. 1, which adjusted for a sharp decline in tax revenues blamed on the slumping oil and agriculture sectors.
BISMARCK—Abortion opponents suffered a blow Wednesday when the U.S. Food and Drug Administration approved a new label expanding the authorized use of a drug used in medication abortions, making the option cheaper and accessible to "many more women," a lawyer for North Dakota's sole abortion provider said.
BISMARCK—As Democratic state Sen. Joan Heckaman prepares to announce her run for lieutenant governor Wednesday in Grand Forks, the three Republicans seeking their party's endorsement for governor have yet to choose running mates. Attorney General Wayne Stenehjem has a "short list of attractive candidates" he's considering, campaign manager Nate Martindale said, politely declining to disclose any names. Two names that have been mentioned often as potential running mates for Stenehjem are Sen. Tom Campbell of Grafton and Sen. Nicole Poolman of Bismarck.
BISMARCK—North Dakota tax revenues fell short of lowered expectations for the second straight month in February, raising the prospect of another round of budget cuts and prompting a warning from an industry official Tuesday that the worst is yet to come as slumping crude prices continue to stall activity. "I think it's going to be more dramatic than what we've seen, and the next round's going to be rough," North Dakota Petroleum Council President Ron Ness told the Legislature's interim Government Finance Committee.
How NDGOP national delegates are selected North Dakota's 28 delegates to the Republican National Convention will be nominated by an 11-member Committee on Permanent Organization, which is co-chaired by the state's two GOP National Committee members, Curly Haugland and Sandy Boehler. The other members are state party chairman Kelly Armstrong of Dickinson and two members from each of the party's four regions selected by their region chairmen.
BISMARCK—New rules drafted the day after a 5-year-old girl was found unresponsive in a public pool in Velva last summer will soon require North Dakota child care providers to obtain written permission from parents before taking their children swimming.
BISMARCK — A group trying to raise $1 million in private donations to help pay for a new North Dakota governor's residence is pushing back its timeline by a few months, but co-chairman Jim Poolman remains confident the money will materialize despite the state's economic downturn. Commitments of more than $500,000 that were announced just before Christmas are now in the bank, meeting the requirement for construction to begin, Poolman said Tuesday before updating a panel of lawmakers about the fundraising effort.