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Dickinson Dinosaur Museum will serve as host to a national paleontology conference this September. The Society for Vertebrate Paleontology, attended by Dickinson museum paleontologists, is holding its annual conference in Australia this year. The Dickinson conference will be an alternative to the one being held in Australia, Dr. Liz Freedman-Fowler, museum paleontologist, explained at Wednesday's meeting of the museum board.
Dickinson Signarama is moving from its Villard Street location this February. The local business has purchased the former Dickinson Charities building at 67 21st St. E. "It's a bigger location and a little more traffic driving by," Jared Meduna, co-owner, said. Signarama makes, among other items, custom decals, awning graphics, flags, banners and illuminated pole signs for businesses. "With a bigger location," Meduna said, "we have more room to produce more signs in-house and accommodate more vehicle wraps and decal installs."
North Dakota's 2019 legislative session is in full swing, and Rep. Luke Simons, R-District 36, says everything is "going real well." There are many exciting new bills being proposed, Simons said. "There's so many of them I can't even explain them all," he said. Among the efforts being tackled by the Legislature is asset forfeiture, Simons said, and other land rights bills.
The City of Dickinson installed 3,488 linear feet of sidewalk in 2018. Craig Kubas, city engineer, called the 2018 program "very successful." "They were a long time coming to get these sidewalks installed, because they were difficult," he said. "The landowners invested some of their private money and the city invested some of our budget in these sidewalks." The program had a budget of $215,000, and concluded with a balance of $15,331. The new sidewalk, installed by Dickinson-based Winn Construction Inc., cost $146,669.
Property owners responded poorly to a proposed zoning change that would allow five blocks immediately south of Dickinson State University to be used for retail space. A public forum on the proposal, held Thursday at DSU's Beck Auditorium, attracted more than 25 people from the nearby neighborhood. The City of Dickinson is considering an overlay zoning district that would allow limited retail and office uses across a five block area, from 12th Avenue to Seventh Avenue, between First Street and Second Street.
Ken Zander was elected board chair of the Stark County Commissioners Tuesday. Commissioner Jay Elkin was nominated, but asked to not be re-elected to the chair, citing his election in December as a District 36 Senator. "With my involvement in the legislature, I'm obviously going to be missing a couple of meetings here," he said. "That's where I have an issue." Elkin suggested he would not be able to give the county role his full attention if re-elected.
Three new Dickinson Police Department officers were sworn in at Tuesday's meeting of the City Commissioners. Aaron Bates, from Oregon, served in the U.S. Air Force for six years, with a top rank of flight sergeant. While serving, Bates helped conduct four separate presidential security missions. "Before the Air Force I was in school for criminal justice and found out real quick that school wasn't a huge favorite of mine, so I went to find something different and there was a lot of schooling involved in that, as well," he said.
The North Dakota Legislature has begun its 2019 session. Rep. Vicky Steiner, District 37, joined her fellow legislators Monday in submitting several bills for consideration. "We have a limit on how many bills we can put in starting tomorrow," she said, "so I'm getting signatures on some of my bills." Steiner said this legislative session promises to be "fascinating." Among her efforts, Steiner is proposing a robotic automated tax credit. The cost would be $2 million and would go to assist automation statewide.
Theodore Roosevelt Regional Airport begins construction of its new temporary runway this spring. The parallel taxiway will be used as a temporary runway while the main runway is being reconstructed. The project is being done in multiple phases. Phase 2 is the start of construction. "We'll start on that as soon as weather permits," Kelly Braun, airport manager, said. "We're hoping March if we're lucky, April for sure." Construction requires a great deal of coordination between the airport and Federal Aviation Administration.
A zoning change could allow property directly south of Dickinson State University to be used for retail space. The City of Dickinson is considering an overlay zoning district that would allow limited retail and office uses across a five block area, from 12th Avenue to Seventh Avenue, between First Street and Second Street. "Back in 2017, when the city was looking at expanding its Renaissance Zone, one of the things that came up in the discussion was adding this area," Steve Josephson, Stark County planner, said. A similar district exists in downtown Dickinson.