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N.D. ROUNDUP: Motorcyclist hits mom's car ... Deere lays off 89 in VC ... more

Motorcyclist hits mom's car The Highway Patrol said a man lost control of his motorcycle on Interstate 94 in Fargo and was injured after the motorcycle ran into the back of a car driven by his mother. The patrol said Nicholas Fischer, Woodbury, Minn.

Motorcyclist hits mom's car

The Highway Patrol said a man lost control of his motorcycle on Interstate 94 in Fargo and was injured after the motorcycle ran into the back of a car driven by his mother.

The patrol said Nicholas Fischer, Woodbury, Minn., was trying to slow down in rush hour traffic when the crash happened about 7 p.m., Friday. Fischer was following a car driven by his mother, Delene Goehring, Pelican Rapids, Minn., as they left Fargo for Pelican Rapids.

Authorities said the interstate was wet from rain at the time, and the motorcycle slid into the back of the car. Fischer was taken to a Fargo hospital.

Deere lays off 89 in VC


John Deere Seeding Group has laid off 89 full-time employees in Valley City but said it plans to bring them back in the fall.

General Manager Keith Hovland said the company will continue to pay health, vision and dental benefits for the assemblers and welders until they return or their status changes.

He won't name a specific month when they will return to work but said that based on business forecasts, "we anticipate having everyone back to work in the fall."

He said some workers are being reassigned, and some will take cuts in pay.

Hovland said John Deere Seeding Group, Valley City's second-largest employer, has about 255 workers. The company makes air seeders and other equipment.

Wahpeton: End one-ways?

Wahpeton officials are considering getting rid of one-way streets.

The city's Public Works and Safety Committee heard support for the idea this week. The group plans to discuss it again next month.


The committee chairman, Meryl Hansey, said the one-way streets likely were established to handle traffic around the North Dakota State College of Science, but they may no longer be needed.

Some worry a change would mean more congestion and traffic problems for people unaccustomed to two-way streets.

Man: Withdraw pleas

A judge is considering a man's request to withdraw his guilty pleas in the 2004 death of his infant son.

Lloyd Petersen II, who's known as Junior, is serving consecutive five-year prison sentences for negligent homicide and child abuse. He was charged in the death of his 6-month-old son, Lloyd Petersen IV, in a Minot apartment.

The child's mother said she had found a piece of clothing tied around the baby's face.

Petersen, who came to North Dakota from the Virgin Islands, said his English is limited and that his statements to investigators after the baby's death were not interpreted correctly.

Under a plea agreement, a felony murder charge was reduced to negligent homicide.


Petersen's former attorney, Richard Thomas, said Petersen understood the plea agreement.

Tree plots to be surveyed

A survey of tree plots could help state and local governments prepare for the expected arrival of the tree-killing emerald ash borer and its aftermath.

A U.S. Forest Service grant and state funds are being used in the Great Plains Tree and Forest Invasives Initiative to inventory urban and rural tree stands in South Dakota, North Dakota, Nebraska and Kansas.

In South Dakota, 200 tree plots in rural areas will be checked in the final phase of a two-year project in which 200 urban and 100 rural plots were checked last year.

"Our urban data this winter showed that, combined with street tree surveys we've been doing for quite a few years, we had a pretty good handle on the urban tree population, but we were still lacking some information on the rural, so this year we put all of our efforts into rural plots," said Coe Foss, of the Resource Conservation and Forestry Division of the state Agriculture Department.

The tree plots are selected in advance by the Forest Service and may be natural groves or intentional plantings such as shelterbelts. Results from each plot documenting the species of trees, size and general condition can then be used to map a report for the state as whole, Foss said.

Of particular interest is the inventory of ash trees.


The emerald ash borer has killed tens of millions of ash trees in the 10 states and two Canadian provinces since first found in Michigan in 2002. It's spread as far west as St. Paul.

The borer spreads when infested trees, logs or firewood are moved from one area to another.

Use for former bus depot?

Use for former bus depot? A police garage, a municipal court center and a dispatch center are among the options Fargo commissioners are considering for a former bus depot.

An architect will be hired to do a feasibility study of about 17,000 square feet of space in the Ground Transportation Center.

Greyhound had used the space, but it pulled out of Fargo last month.

Officials said the bus service has been picked up by other companies but they don't need as much space.

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