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By 2019, DeMers Avenue will undergo construction, and the process comes down to two choices: A quick-and-easy overlay without many modifications, or a lengthy reconstruction project that could bring great change to downtown Grand Forks, from the Sorlie Bridge to Sixth Street. In terms of plastic surgery, it's the difference between a full facelift or a quick shot of Botox.
Attendees of an informal downtown Grand Forks focus group meeting say they prefer a basic overlay project on DeMers Avenue rather than a major reconstruction project that will cost more money and cause greater disruption.
The trial of James Whalen came to a close Monday, but not before Whalen and his attorney committed one more inappropriate act. When Whalen was a Grand Forks Central teacher, he had sex multiple times with a student who was 16 and 17 at the time. The encounters allegedly occurred in both Minnesota and North Dakota and in Central High School itself. He engaged in text conversations with the girl and even was seen on video purchasing a Plan B pill — used to prevent an unwanted pregnancy — for her.
BISMARCK — Rep. Emily O'Brien is among 27 members of the North Dakota House of Representatives who haven't missed a vote through the first 43 days of the current legislative session. O'Brien, a first-year Republican, is the only member of the eight-person House delegation from Grand Forks to have put her mark down on every vote so far this year, according to Herald research through Thursday. There are 94 members in the House. The Herald will list local Senate voting numbers next week.
Scott Meyer says the best way to hasten a North Dakota winter is win a seat in the North Dakota Legislature. "For those who want to get away for the winter and be a snowbird, I say go serve in Bismarck," Meyer said Friday. "It flies by in the blink of an eye." Meyer, a Republican senator, is one of four rookie lawmakers from Grand Forks serving in the 65th assembly of the state Legislature. Other first-year legislators from Grand Forks are Reps. Jake Blum, Emily O'Brien and Steve Vetter. All are Republicans.
Richard Nixon may be the only president who despised the media as much as President Donald Trump. Nixon kept so-called "enemy lists" of reporters he disliked. He banned certain reporters from the White House. When the Washington Post pushed its investigation of Watergate, Nixon told his staff to mess with the Post's television licenses. One of his aides told the head of CBS that the Nixon administration would "bring you to your knees" and "break your network."
It's a rather depressing time for business in North Dakota. The oil, agriculture and Canadian tourism industries all tanked at once. Now, consider a government-mandated plan to add 27 percent labor costs to small businesses throughout the state. That's essentially what would happen if a plan to raise minimum wage is passed by the North Dakota Legislature.
Safety concerns are a natural reaction to speed limit increases. Common sense tells us the higher the speed limit, the more likely a fatal accident could result. Statistically speaking, that's probably true in all cases. But it isn't necessarily automatic. For instance, South Dakota in 2015 raised its interstate speed limits to 80 miles per hour and, in 2016, had 115 traffic fatalities statewide. It was the lowest tally in that state since 2011.
Not long ago, the Grand Sky aviation and technology park was more grand vision than foreseeable reality. As the Herald has reported, the idea first came five or six years ago, when local leaders sat around a boardroom table at the UND Center for Innovation. They talked about building an airport for unmanned aircraft and constructing a business park to accommodate the innovative businesses that predictably would spring up around the burgeoning unmanned aviation industry.
Voters in Devils Lake this spring will decide whether to build a new performing-arts center, and in the process may well determine the future of performing arts in the community. The question before them is whether to approve an $8.95 million facility with an auditorium that would seat 600. If approved, taxes will increase in the district; a home worth $150,000 will see an annual tax increase of $97, while cropland taxes will increase according to value.