John Hageman covers North Dakota politics from the Forum News Service bureau in Bismarck. He attended the University of Minnesota in the Twin Cities, where he studied journalism and political science, and he previously worked at the Grand Forks Herald and Bemidji Pioneer.
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BISMARCK — As the North Dakota House prepares to consider a bill to ban discrimination based on sexual orientation, some business owners are using a workforce development argument to push for its passage. Several businesspeople in Grand Forks and Fargo have argued that Senate Bill 2279 can be a marketing tool to help a state with more than 20,000 job openings. “I feel that we should be doing everything that we can to let people know that when they move to North Dakota, whether it’s to work in existing industries or to work for companies that are growing or to start their own business, that w
BISMARCK — North Dakota Democratic lawmakers have requested an opinion from the North Dakota attorney general on whether federal laws and regulations prohibiting foreign campaign contributions apply to statewide, legislative and local candidates. The request, which was delivered to the attorney general's office Tuesday, comes after it was revealed that state Sen. Lonnie Laffen, R-Grand Forks, reported a nearly $2,000 campaign contribution from a Canadian businessman last year.
By John Hageman Forum News Service GRAND FORKS — A federal tax incentive that some see as critical to supporting the wind energy industry expired at the end of last year, but some congressional lawmakers and advocates are pushing for its extension. The production tax credit for wind provides 2.3 cents for every kilowatt-hour of energy produced.
FARGO — A new survey from North Dakota State University found that about 3 percent of North Dakota college students who tried to vote in November’s election “were unable to participate due to confusion over residency requirements.” The survey, conducted by the Upper Midwest Regional Center on Public Policy at NDSU and released Tuesday, comes after the North Dakota Legislature eliminated the voter affidavit option in 2013, which allowed someone to cast a ballot without proper identification.
BISMARCK — The derailment and subsequent explosion of rail cars carrying North Dakota crude oil last week has again sparked debate over oil train safety. The wreck, in which 26 tankers carried by a CSX Corp. train derailed and resulted in a fireball in West Virginia, prompted some to argue that North Dakota regulators and elected officials need to do more to make sure oil is transported safely.
BISMARCK —The North Dakota Senate overwhelmingly approved a bill Tuesday to provide enhanced driver's licenses, a move that proponents said could make it more convenient for citizens to cross the Canadian border. The bill, Senate Bill 2148, was passed 45-2 Tuesday. Only Sen. Connie Triplett, D-Grand Forks, and Sen. Oley Larsen, R-Minot, voted against it. Sen.
BISMARCK — The North Dakota House voted Tuesday to allow voters to use a bill or bank statement to verify their residency at the polls. House Bill 1333, sponsored by Rep. Randy Boehning, R-Fargo, would allow those without an updated identification to use a bill, bank statement or U.S. Postal Service change of address form dated 30 days before the election to vote.
BISMARCK — A proposal from North Dakota legislative leadership would require state lawmakers to live in the district they represent. The proposal, Senate Concurrent Resolution 4010, will go before the Senate Judiciary Committee Wednesday morning.
BISMARCK — A bill that would have allowed underage active military members to drink alcohol was voted down in the House Friday. The bill as introduced would have allowed 18-, 19- and 20-year-old members of the military to consume alcohol on a military base if the commanding officer allowed it. The bill, introduced by Rep. Andrew Maragos, R-Minot, was amended to allow active military members to drink on "any premises licensed to sell alcoholic beverages."
BISMARCK — North Dakota Democratic lawmakers have introduced a bill to separate the state’s oil and gas promotional and regulatory duties. The bill states that the North Dakota Industrial Commission, which oversees the Department of Mineral Resources, “may not foster, encourage, and promote the development, production and utilization of natural resources of oil and gas in this state,” and instead must focus on regulating those industries.