North Dakota House revives, kills resolution on UND medical school property tax levy

Rep. Donald Longmuir, R-Stanley, said the property tax also gives stable funding to the school, even when a state budget may be in flux.

The North Dakota State Capitol stands over the mall July 14, 2016, in Bismarck.
The North Dakota State Capitol in Bismarck.
Forum file photo

BISMARCK — The day after the North Dakota House voted in favor of a resolution that would amend the state’s Constitution to remove a statewide property tax levy for the UND medical school, legislators reversed the decision.

On Friday, March 24, lawmakers in Bismarck reconsidered and voted 47-40 against Senate Concurrent Resolution 4019, which would have – with voter approval – eliminated a one-mill levy that supports the medical school with about $11 million each biennium. The mill levy was created in 1949.

Opponents of the resolution believe the tax levy, the only statewide property tax, is important to the health care industry, as the medical school produces many doctors and others in the profession who practice in North Dakota.

Rep. Donald Longmuir, R-Stanley, added the property tax also gives stable funding to the school, even when a state budget may be in flux.

“The medical school needs … at least one form of a steady income to make sure they can continue these good programs,” he said.


Supporters say the resolution is a matter of tax policy and there was no intention to defund the medical school, but rather to shift the source of funding from property taxes to the general fund.

“I think today's economy, where we're at, this is as good a time as any to take and put this measure on the ballot,” Rep. Jared Hagert, R-Emerado, said Friday.

During Friday’s debate, Hagert said he was wrong on Thursday to indicate that the medical school was supportive of the resolution. Friday, he said the school was against the measure.

There were seven members who did not vote.

Sydney Mook has been the news editor at the Post Bulletin since June 2023. In her role she edits and assigns stories and helps reporters develop their work for readers.

Mook was previously with the Grand Forks Herald from May 2018 to June 2023. She served as the Herald's managing editor, as well as the higher education reporter.

For story pitches contact her at or call her at 507-285-7771.
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