John Hageman covers local business and Grand Forks' legislative delegation. Get more business news at aroundtown.areavoices.com.
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Heather Nelson is well-versed in the arguments over electronic cigarettes. Armed with a stack of printed news clippings behind the glass counter at her Grand Forks shop, SnG Vapor, she's adamant that the products her business sells helps smokers quit traditional cigarettes. But Nelson worries that a proposed tax in North Dakota will harm her business and present an obstacle for those looking to stop smoking. "I don't think it's fair to boost the tax on something that's actually helping them," she said.
The demolition of a former Perkins restaurant in northwest Grand Forks is making way for a new Hardee's. The old Perkins building at 1213 N. 47th St., which was near the intersection of U.S. Highway 2 and Interstate 29, was torn down in preparation for construction of a new Hardee's. Sam Munger, director of business development for Eau Claire, Wis-based Northland Restaurant Group, which also owns the South Columbia Road Hardee's, hopes the restaurant can open at the end of July or in August. Munger said Grand Forks has a "blue collar" community that fits their target market.
The Grand Forks Regional Airport Authority formed a new committee Thursday to focus on FedEx's planned departure from the Grand Forks International Airport. The committee will work "on items relative to the financial, legal, tenant-recruitment and planning efforts for this transition," Airport Authority Executive Director Ryan Riesinger said during a board meeting Thursday morning. The Airport Authority members agreed to appoint commissioners Steve Kuhlman and Tim Mutchler to the transition committee and Chairman Karl Bollingberg as an ex-officio member.
The Democratic candidates for the top jobs in North Dakota government criticized Republican leadership and argued for more balanced representation Wednesday during a Grand Forks campaign stop. The event marked the launch of state Sen. Joan Heckaman's bid for lieutenant governor, which comes a week after Rep. Marvin Nelson, D-Rolla, announced he would run for governor.
The city doesn’t own stock in any other company, and Richards is not aware of any profit it has realized from the Aatrix stock, she said. She added that she's not sure what form the "restructuring" may take until the company submits a specific proposal.
North Dakota Sen. Joan Heckaman, D-New Rockford, will announce her run for lieutenant governor Wednesday in Grand Forks. The North Dakota Democratic-NPL Party sent an advisory this afternoon stating Heckaman would hold a news conference at the Grand Forks Public Library to "make an announcement regarding her intentions for the 2016 election cycle." The party's executive director, Robert Haider, confirmed to the Herald that Heckaman would run for lieutenant governor.
The Grand Forks Growth Fund Committee agreed Monday to help finance projects for two local businesses. Countrywide Sanitation, a refuse and recycling business, is planning to build a 12,000-square-foot building at 2500 N. 69th St., which will be used mainly for sorting and baling recycled material, according to meeting documents. JR Investments, the real estate holding company for Countrywide, came to the committee Monday requesting a $52,173 Flex Pace loan to buy down the interest on a $510,000 Choice Financial loan.
A city with a professional hockey team, cultural sites and major concerts, Winnipeg now may be more attractive to American travelers because of the persistent gap in the value of U.S. and Canadian dollars.
After three years of ownership, Quinn Olson has found that running a small-town bakery is too much for one person to handle. That's why he decided to put the McIntosh Bakery up for sale last week. "I thought I could do it, but it just takes more people," Olson said. "I love to bake; that's the reason I bought it. If a couple or a family were to buy it, they could totally make it." The bakery, located in McIntosh, Minn., has been around for decades before Olson owned it, he said. McIntosh is a town of 625 people located about 60 miles southeast of Grand Forks.
North Dakota business and labor groups are mirroring their national counterparts' stances on a major multinational trade agreement. Like the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, the Greater North Dakota Chamber supports the Trans-Pacific Partnership. And like the national AFL-CIO, the North Dakota chapter opposes it. That's perhaps unsurprising, but what remains unclear is how congressional delegations from North Dakota and Minnesota will vote on the deal.