As the local school district has scrambled to cover a driver shortage, the city of Grand Forks has stepped in to offer help. That means shifting standard routes to help ferry kids to school and, in a few cases, drivers hopping behind the wheel of a school bus to pitch in. That includes Dale Bergman, the top official with Cities Area Transit, who on Thursday was driving Dietrich Bus Service’s bus No. 1421, stopping at Viking Elementary and South Middle School, Herald correspondent Sam Easter reports. Scott Berge, the business manager for Grand Forks Public Schools, said he can’t be sure how much longer the district will need it.

Survey shows worker shortage and a 'skills gap' are stifling business growth in Grand Forks

A shortage of workers is stifling growth in the public and private sectors, Grand Forks-area employers say, but the problem is further compounded by a “skills gap,” according to a survey commissioned by the Grand Forks Region Economic Development Corp. The Herald's Pamela Knudson reports that to address this problem – and build a case for a proposed career and technical education center in Grand Forks – the EDC received a grant from the North Dakota Department of Commerce to hire Mark Schill, vice president for research, Praxis Research Group, to analyze available labor market data and conduct student and industry surveys.

Tailgating tradition offers exciting lead-up to clash of UND and NDSU football teams

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A current of excitement and anticipation rippled row upon row of tailgating revelers hours before the long-awaited matchup between the UND and NDSU football teams Saturday afternoon, Oct. 2, at the Alerus Center. The Herald's Pamela Knudson reports that in one row, a UND band marched and played the school’s fight song -- engaging onlookers who sang and clapped -- as they led Fighting Hawk football players to the Alerus Center at noon, about two hours before kickoff. UND and NDSU fans relished the pregame festivities before the match which pitted fifth-ranked NDSU against 10th-ranked UND. Saturday’s contest marked the first time in 18 years the teams have played in Grand Forks.

With Grand Forks in 'high risk' COVID status, flu season looms

It’s almost time for the strangest flu season Grand Forks — and the rest of the country — has ever seen. The COVID pandemic has stolen the last 18 months of headlines, but influenza hasn’t gone away. And though public health experts say distancing and masking kept infections remarkably low last winter, those safeguards are fading out of public practice just in time for this flu season’s arrival. Herald correspondent Sam Easter reports that alongside COVID, that could be disastrous.

Gov. Doug Burgum appoints Grand Forks EDC's Becca Cruger to the North Dakota Workforce Development Council

The council is the state’s workforce innovation and opportunity board, and Cruger will join it in an effort to advise the governor and the public on workforce development and North Dakota’s economic development needs, the Herald's Jacob Holley reports.

Audit finds UND out of compliance with some state regulations

An audit from the state Auditor’s Office recommends UND take steps to better keep track of employee information, among other issues. The Herald's Adam Kurtz reports that the audit, a standard procedure carried out at regular intervals, found some departments did not complete annual inventories of fixed assets. The audit also found the school did not follow some state regulations surrounding building projects. The issue surrounding employee information was discovered in an audit in 2018.

Lumber prices, supply shortages and more have turned the local lumber industry on its head

According to the National Association of Home Builders, the price of lumber tripled between April 2020 and May 2021. The Herald's Jacob Holley reports that it has devalued since last summer, but now it is beginning to rise again. The president of Lumber Mart Inc. estimates the normal cost per thousand used to be around $300 to $325 per thousand units, whereas during the pandemic, it hit a high of around $1,500 per thousand units.

Roseau Electric Cooperative brings electric vehicle experience to northern Minnesota

A free event hosted by the Roseau Electric Cooperative aimed to educate people in the area about the benefits and possibilities of electric vehicles. Roseau Electric partnered with Northern Municipal Power Agency, the city of Roseau Municipal Utility, Minnkota Power Cooperative, Roseau County Ford, C & M Dealership, and Clean Energy Resource Teams to bring information and an electric experience to Roseau. The Herald's Ingrid Harbo reports that a few vehicle owners, dealers and electric cooperatives brought their own electric vehicles to the event so attendees could learn about the vehicles and experience what it's like to ride and drive in an electric vehicle. Among the vehicles were two Teslas, a Chevrolet Volt and a Ford Mustang Mach-E.

Thompson football player defies norms on the field, makes an impact off it

Ali Moses is a senior in high school in Thompson, N.D., and has been playing football since seventh grade. But Moses stands out in Thompson for more than just defying gender norms in sports. The Herald's Ingrid Harbo reports that as a 4.0 student and involved community member, Moses makes an impact on and off the field.

Forbes Magazine names Sanford Health as 'Best Employer' in North Dakota and South Dakota

Forbes determined its rankings by partnering with market research company Statista to anonymously survey 80,000 Americans working at businesses with more than 500 employees. The Herald's Jacob Holley reports that participants rated their employers on criteria that included safety of work environment, compensation competitiveness, advancement opportunities and more.