John Hageman covers local business and North Dakota politics. He attended the University of Minnesota in the Twin Cities, where he studied journalism and political science, and he previously worked at the Bemidji Pioneer.
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The gubernatorial campaign for Republican Attorney General Wayne Stenehjem worked Wednesday to clarify a "semantics issue" with its candidate filings. Online records show the Stenehjem for Governor Exploratory Committee registered with the Secretary of State on Feb. 1, but ads for the candidate and his campaign website note they're paid for by Stenehjem for Governor. "They're the same entity," Stenehjem's campaign manager Nate Martindale said, adding the campaign would "probably not" update the name. "It's mostly for collecting funds."
The U.S. Supreme Court will hear arguments Wednesday on North Dakota and Minnesota drunk driving cases that could have broader implications for how states deter that crime.
A new restaurant concept will open later this year in East Grand Forks. Up North Pizza Pub will serve pizza, sandwiches, salads and soups. It will also have a bar area with craft beer, wines and cocktails. Owner Justin LaRocque said he hopes Up North will "create a nice lunch option and also be that family-friendly dinner space." "We kind of want to have a presence in all three facets of the industry, capturing the lunch, dinner and late-night crowd," he said. "But what we're kind of striving for is also that neighborhood-pub feel."
ST. PAUL—Getting involved in politics is one way to make enemies. But it would be a tall order to find anyone with anything nasty to say about LeRoy Stumpf, a Minnesota senator who will retire this year after roughly 36 years in public office. Colleagues said they'll miss his congenial demeanor and aversion to partisan politics, which seems to be an increasingly rare trait among those seeking public office. "Some say he's too nice," said U.S. Rep. Collin Peterson, a fellow Democrat whose congressional district overlaps Stumpf's.
The technical details of a large public infrastructure project can often be too much for many people to grasp. That's where AE2S Communications comes in. AE2S, which stands for Advanced Engineering and Environmental Services, is a Grand Forks-based engineering company that created a new division at the beginning of the year for its communication and marketing services. While the company has been offering those services for years, it's now making more of a push to market them externally.
Altru Health System announced Friday it will introduce a health insurance option for group purchasers in the region later this year. Altru is working with Medica, a Minneapolis-based health insurer, to create an accountable care organization for employers in northeast North Dakota and northwest Minnesota. The organizations are expecting to launch the ACO, named Altru & You with Medica, in the third quarter of 2016.
About 80 employers were looking for workers at a job fair Thursday at Grand Forks' Alerus Center. Altru Health System, Acme Tools and Cirrus Aircraft were among the companies recruiting potential employees, said Keith Reitmeier, Job Service North Dakota's eastern region director. "We're at capacity here in the building," he said. The northeast region of North Dakota had 2,078 job openings in March, up from 1,641 in February, according to Job Service data.
Republican candidates have seen success at the ballot box in areas that have experienced shale energy booms, a University of Pennsylvania professor said in a presentation on the UND campus Monday.
The Minnesota Court of Appeals has affirmed the East Grand Forks City Council's decision to conditionally renew a local restaurant's liquor license in an ongoing dispute over an unpaid economic development loan. The City Council voted in June 2015 to renew the Boardwalk Bar and Grill's liquor license for one year on the condition that a $510,000 city loan used to help construct the building where the business is located be resolved within a year. The city and business owners have met in mediation but as of March 9 had not come to an agreement on the loan.
Despite a defeat at the North Dakota Republican Convention over the weekend, Fargo businessman Doug Burgum's struck a positive tone in a meeting with the Herald editorial board Tuesday. "We feel great about it," he said. "And that's not just some kind of—What's the word they use in politics?—spin."