Mike Nowatzki reports for Forum News Service. He can be reached at (701) 255-5607.
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BISMARCK — The North Dakota Department of Trust Lands continues to make changes recommended in three critical audits released earlier this year, getting approval Thursday, Sept. 29, to reduce its number of deputy commissioners from two to one and having a consultant review its business processes. The state auditor's office made 59 recommendations in three separate audits released in February and April that that found bookkeeping errors, raised ethical concerns and identified shortcomings in how the agency handled the state's oil impact grant and unclaimed property programs.
BISMARCK — Despite more than $1 billion in agency budget cuts and planned fund transfers, North Dakota's general fund budget is still on track to end the biennium with a negative balance, the state's budget director said Thursday, Sept. 29.
BISMARCK — The North Dakota Department of Health's public information director has resigned over comments she inadvertently posted from the department's official Twitter account during the first U.S. presidential debate, calling it a "dreadful mistake." Colleen Reinke offered her resignation immediately after the incident Monday, Sept. 26,, and it was accepted as of 8 a.m. Wednesday, according to emails provided by Human Resources Director Dirk Wilke in response to an open records request.
BISMARCK — Attorney General Wayne Stenehjem on Tuesday gave the company building the Dakota Access Pipeline 30 days to explain how it intends to use thousands of acres of ranchland purchased last week around the pipeline route in Morton County — and how it complies with the state's anti-corporate farming law.
BISMARCK – Authorities say a Dakota Access Pipeline security guard sustained minor injuries in a confrontation Sunday, Sept. 25, with pipeline protesters at a construction site in Morton County. However, a spokesman for protesters said he heard no such reports. The Morton County Sheriff’s Department said law enforcement was notified at 9:30 a.m. Sunday of roughly 200 people at the site west of State Highway 6 near St. Anthony.
BISMARCK – The company building the Dakota Access Pipeline has purchased 20 parcels of land totaling more than 7,000 acres north of where protesters of the four-state oil pipeline are...
BISMARCK — North Dakota Democrats running for congressional, statewide and legislative office proposed Thursday a state-owned oil refinery and rerouting the Dakota Access Pipeline as potential solutions to the ongoing dispute over the four-state oil pipeline.
BISMARCK — Officials spearheading a decades-old effort to divert Missouri River water to eastern North Dakota during droughts said they've revived a cheaper water intake option as their preferred alternative and will scale back their request for state funding in light of slumping tax revenues. But they said they hope lawmakers will still provide enough money to start construction on the Red River Valley Water Supply Project during the 2017-19 biennium so it can be grandfathered in before new federal regulations that could delay the project take effect.
BISMARCK – Opponents of a North Dakota ballot measure that would expand crime victims’ rights and write them into the state constitution have formed a campaign committee chaired by former attorney general and district judge Robert Wefald of Bismarck. “This is simply bad constitutional law,” Wefald said Wednesday, Sept. 21, at a Capitol press conference announcing the “No on 3” committee. The group opposes Marsy’s Law for North Dakota, which will be listed as Measure 3 on the Nov. 8 statewide ballot.
BISMARCK — The state Emergency Commission voted Wednesday, Sept. 21, to borrow up to $6 million from the state-owned Bank of North Dakota to support law enforcement efforts related to the Dakota Access Pipeline protests, but not before members blasted the lack of federal support to deal with protesters camped out on federal land.