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Port: The Dakota Access Pipeline company shouldn't have to pay for the #NoDAPL movement's mayhem

Police and protestors scuffle Thursday, Oct. 27, 2016, north of Cannon Ball. Michael Vosburg / Forum Photo Editor

Back in November I interviewed Kelcy Warren.

Warren is the CEO of Energy Transfer Partners, the company which has been trying to build the Dakota Access Pipeline.

During that interview Warren told me that his company would consider reimbursing North Dakota for the costs incurred by the state responding to the often unlawful and often violent #NoDAPL protests against the project, an offer he media in other discussions with the media as well.

It’s a nice gesture by the company, and today the Fargo Forum editorial board calls on the company to make good on it. They’re also calling on Governor Doug Burgum to contact the company to help make it happen.

But it shouldn’t happen, for a couple of excellent reasons.

For one thing, the pipeline company reimbursing the State of North Dakota for the law enforcement response to the protesters smacks of the state serving the company. Already the political extremists attacking the pipeline project have tried to claim that law enforcement was acting as private security for the oil industry. The last thing we need to do is put some meat on a bone they’re already gnawing.

There is an appearance of impropriety to any payment from the pipeline company to the state which should be avoided.

But there’s an even better reason why Energy Transfer Partners shouldn’t pay.