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Hoeven asks ag secretary to visit ND

WASHINGTON — The Republican senator from North Dakota has asked U.S. Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack to come to the Peace Garden State.

Sen. John Hoeven and Vilsack met Wednesday, when Hoeven asked the secretary to gather input from farmers and ranchers on the implementation of a new farm bill and other agricultural issues important to North Dakota producers. Hoeven said in an email it is important for Vilsack to be informed on concerns during the bill’s application.

“He also needs to hear their concerns about conservation compliance and the (Environmental Protection Agency’s) Waters of the United States rule, which could impose burdensome requirements on producers,” Hoeven wrote in the email.

The rule would place all waters currently used, were used in the past or may be susceptible to use in interstate or foreign commerce under regulation by the EPA. Hoeven strongly opposed the rule, saying producers could be at risk of liability because of it. Hoeven has asked the agency to withdraw the rule, calling on Vilsack for help.

April Baumgarten
April Baumgarten joined the Grand Forks Herald May 19, 2015, as the news editor. She works with a team of talented journalists and editors, who strive to give the Grand Forks area the quality news readers deserve to know. Baumgarten grew up on a ranch 10 miles southeast of Belfield, where her family continues to raise registered Hereford cattle. She double majored in communications and history/political science at Jamestown (N.D.) College, now known as University of Jamestown. During her time at the college,  she worked as a reporter and editor-in-chief for the university's newspaper, The Collegian. Baumgarten previously worked for The Dickinson Press as the Dickinson city government and energy reporter in 2011 before becoming the editor of the Hazen Star and Center Republican. She then returned to The Press as a news editor, where she helped lead an award-winning newsroom in recording the historical oil boom.