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Plain Talk: Lawmaker talks property tax proposal, attorney general office space scandal

State Rep. Mike Nathe joined this episode of Plain Talk to discuss a proposal he's backing to reduce North Dakota's property taxes with Legacy Fund revenues. Also, co-host Chad Oban and I discuss the latest news from the congressional races, including all the new polling.

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North Dakota Sen. Donald Schaible, R-Mott, right, speaks next to Rep. Mike Nathe, R-Bismarck, at a press conference about a proposed property tax cut on Monday, Sept. 26, 2022.
Jeremy Turley / Forum News Service
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MINOT, N.D. — We're all in campaign mode right now, but just a couple of months after Election Day North Dakota will have a new legislative session. Lawmakers at that session will be hearing about two competing tax cut plans.

One would flatten the state's income tax brackets, and eliminate the tax for most of the state's filers. The other would leverage interest revenues from the state's Legacy Fund to buy down the portion of your property taxes that goes for schools.

Rep. Craig Headland, and Tax Commissioner Brian Kroshus, appeared on a previous episode of Plain Talk to make the case for the income tax proposal. On this episode, Rep. Mike Nathe joined to make the case for the property tax plan.

Nathe, who serves on the Legislature's audit committee, also responded to questions about the scandal over a lease for office space for departments within the Attorney General's Office that went to a building owned by a state lawmaker. Nathe said he wants to hear the lawmaker's side of the story — that's Rep. Jason Dockter, a Republican from the Bismarck area — but his view of how that deal went down is far from positive.

Asked if he could describe what benefit accrued to the taxpayers from moving parts of the AG's office to that office space, he said he couldn't.

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Also on this episode, Wednesday co-host Chad Oban and I discuss the congressional races. We talked about the four polls that have been released in the House race between incumbent Republican Kelly Armstrong and independent challenger Cara Mund, as well as the dynamics in the U.S. Senate race between Republican incumbent John Hoeven, Democratic challenger Katrina Christiansen, and independent Rick Becker.

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Opinion by Rob Port
Rob Port is a news reporter, columnist, and podcast host for the Forum News Service. He has an extensive background in investigations and public records. He has covered political events in North Dakota and the upper Midwest for two decades. Reach him at rport@forumcomm.com. Click here to subscribe to his Plain Talk podcast.
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