Patrick Springer first joined the reporting staff of The Forum in 1985. He can be reached by calling 701-241-5522. Have a comment to share about a story? Letters to the editor should include author’s name, address and phone number. Generally, letters should be no longer than 250 words. All letters are subject to editing. Send to email@example.com
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FARGO — T. Denny Sanford has repeatedly said that he wants to "die broke" and has given away more than $1 billion of his fortune, most notably contributing to namesake Sanford Health. But he's still wealthy enough to land on Forbes' list of billionaires. Forbes estimates Sanford's net worth at $2.6 billion, up from $2.2 billion in March. He owns Premier Bank, based in Sioux Falls, S.D., which specializes in offering credit cards to high-risk borrowers, and is one of the biggest issuers of Visa and Mastercards.
FARGO — Cash Hatlen was a normal, bouncy baby for the first six weeks of his life. There was no hint that anything could go wrong. Except, in hindsight, there was one telltale sign. He spit up a lot. But all babies spit up, after all, and his mother saw nothing unusual about her fifth child. Nothing unusual until her cousin, who was visiting, abruptly noticed that something had gone very wrong. "Cash doesn't look right," the cousin said, with evident alarm in her voice. His mother, Kelly Hatlen, rushed to his crib and it was immediately clear that he was in danger.
FARGO—North Dakota insurance officials outlined a plan intended to allow consumers more options for health coverage they said would reduce premiums between 10 percent and 20 percent and would give insurers greater flexibility. Insurance Commissioner Jon Godfread presented the proposal, which aims to increase health insurance affordability and competition, Wednesday, Sept. 26, to an interim legislative committee.
FARGO—Former U.S. Sen. Byron Dorgan, D-N.D., said Attorney General Wayne Stenehjem "outsourced" health decisions for North Dakota residents by joining a Texas lawsuit seeking to overturn the Affordable Care Act. Stenehjem joined a legal challenge in federal court in Texas that seeks to declare the health care law unconstitutional. If the law is struck down, thousands of North Dakotans who get their health insurance through the marketplace or from expanded Medicaid will lose their coverage, Dorgan said on Tuesday, Sept. 25.
FARGO — Oil production in North Dakota's Bakken Formation is increasing steadily as technology advances, and a 2-million-barrel-per-day goal set a year ago no longer seems out of reach. That was the view of industry officials, gathered here for the annual conference of the North Dakota Petroleum Council, who stressed the importance of technological innovation in increasing efficiency and productivity in the Oil Patch.
FARGO — In the beginning, Aldevron was two guys with a lot of time on their hands and an idea that was both simple and bold: They would do a lot of the tedious preparation work that would service biotechnology labs. The year was 1998 when Michael Chambers and John Ballantyne met at North Dakota State University, where Chambers was graduating with degrees in microbiology, biotechnology and chemistry; Ballantyne was finishing his graduate work in pharmacy.
FARGO—Kerry Wahl sometimes gives people the impression that she's rude. In fact, because she's deaf, she isn't always aware when someone is talking to her. Christopher Peterson, who also is deaf, can encounter communication challenges at work. In certain situations, he has to arrange for an interpreter who knows sign language. "If I need an interpreter tomorrow, it's not going to happen," he said. "So I don't feel equal."
MOORHEAD — Amy Wieser Willson has suffered for years from chronic pain so severe that some days she couldn't get out of bed. On those days, even contact with her bed sheets was painful. Wieser Willson, whose ailments include fibromyalgia and osteoarthritis, now can take a capsule of medical marijuana before bed and, most mornings, wakes up pain free. Occasionally, when she has a flare-up, she uses a vaporized form of the medication, which relieves her pain.
BISMARCK — North Dakota's rebounding sales tax collections continued in the second quarter with receipts that were almost 10 percent higher than the second quarter last year. Taxable sales and purchases for April, May and June reached almost $5.15 billion, almost 9.5 percent above last year's second quarter, according to figures from the Office of State Tax Commissioner released Monday, Sept. 17.
FARGO — The presidents of North Dakota's two flagship universities said the state's long history of economic peaks and valleys underscores the need for strategic investments in university research to help diversify an economy dependent on agriculture and oil. Dean Bresciani, president of North Dakota State University, and Mark Kennedy, president of the University of North Dakota, outlined their proposal for the state to invest $100 million in research at the two campuses over a four-year period.