Amy Dalrymple / Bismarck Tribune
BISMARCK — The co-owner of a Mandan bar says the business is prepared to take legal action to keep a mural that city officials ordered removed. The Mandan City Commission voted a month ago to require Lonesome Dove to remove artwork from the bar’s front wind block that is an unpermitted mural under the city’s ordinance. Now the business is working with the Institute for Justice, which describes itself as a national law firm for liberty that litigates to limit the size and scope of government power.
BISMARCK -- Human trafficking victim advocates are pushing for increased funding as North Dakota lawmakers work to finalize state budgets. The Senate voted to spend about $1.63 million on human trafficking victim services, but House members reduced the funding to $1 million. A House-Senate conference committee will meet on Monday, April 22, to work on a compromise for the spending level, which is part of the budget for the Attorney General’s Office.
BISMARCK — North Dakota residents concerned about nuclear waste storage say they’re “gratified” that state legislators included their suggestions in a bill approved this week. House members voted 85-5 on Wednesday in favor of Senate Bill 2037, a bill that sets up a framework for permitting and regulating the storage and disposal of spent nuclear fuel and other high-level radioactive waste.
BISMARCK — North Dakota lawmakers have approved a complex energy bill related to “pore space,” but some who opposed the property rights legislation say it will end up in court or referred to voters. House members voted 66-24 Wednesday, April 17, to approve Senate Bill 2344, which seeks to clear up issues related to pore space, which describes the cavity or void in underground rock formations. “We think that with this bill, we have the opportunity to protect surface owners as well as the operators,” said Rep. George Keiser, R-Bismarck.
BISMARCK -- A project to capture carbon dioxide from a western North Dakota ethanol plant continues to advance as researchers work to better understand the geology below the facility. Red Trail Energy in Richardton proposes to capture carbon dioxide rather than emit it into the atmosphere and inject it deep underground, reducing the carbon footprint of the ethanol plant to meet West Coast fuel standards. The company recently completed a geophysical survey of eight square miles around the plant.
BISMARCK -- A joint House-Senate conference committee made changes to a controversial energy bill on Friday, April 12, removing language related to the temporary storage of natural gas. The conference committee met three times this week to find a compromise on Senate Bill 2344, a complex bill that aims to clear up issues involving pore space, or the cavity or void in underground rock formations.
A U.S. House subcommittee will hold a field hearing on the Standing Rock Sioux Reservation next week to gather input on barriers that prevent Native Americans from voting. The Committee on House Administration Elections Subcommittee plans to collect testimony and evidence about challenges tribal members in North Dakota and South Dakota face when attempting to vote. The hearing is at 10 a.m. Tuesday, April 16, in the Standing Rock Sioux Tribal Council chambers in Fort Yates. It is open to the public.
BISMARCK — Gov. Doug Burgum has signed a bill that supporters say will deter tampering with or damaging pipelines and other critical infrastructure. Burgum signed Senate Bill 2044 on Wednesday evening, April 10, after the legislation received support from a majority of Senate and House members. The bill was introduced in response to activists who turned an emergency valve of an oil pipeline in northeast North Dakota in 2016.
MANDAN, N.D. — A pastor delivered a message of hope on Tuesday, April 9, to friends and family of the four people killed last week at a Mandan business. The Rev. Jared Lee spoke to about 600 people gathered at Bismarck Community Church to celebrate the lives of Robert Fakler, Bill and Lois Cobb and Adam Fuehrer, friends and co-workers at RJR Maintenance and Management. Lee acknowledged the tragedy of the April 1 deaths, calling the homicides “a horrible injustice, an unfair and completely wicked act.”
WASHBURN, N.D. − The arrest of a Washburn man in connection with the killings of four people at a Mandan business left residents of the small central North Dakota town stunned. “You get a big lump in your throat because that was a little too close to home,” said Kim Ogden, who works on Washburn’s Main Avenue next door to the suspect’s chiropractor business. “You can just feel the weight in the whole town.”