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Oil Patch leaders seek to give legislators a dose of reality

Oil Patch leaders seek to give legislators a dose of reality

Division of oil tax revenue an issue leading up to the session
WATFORD CITY, N.D. -- When legislators and local government leaders in the Oil Patch make their case for more funding in the next legislative session, they want those from outside the region to have seen the situation firsthand. “We want them to have visual images in their minds of seeing RV parks and these roads — not perceptions — of what it’s like out here,” Watford City Mayor Brent Sanford said Wednesday. “... I think it hit home, they were all looking and watching, very quiet and reflective.”

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Dickinson leaders get facetime with legislators on oil country tour

DICKINSON, N.D. -- To start a two-day tour of western North Dakota oil country, more than 30 legislators stopped at Marathon Oil's Dickinson office to hear from city officials. Terry Kovacevich, head of Marathon's Bakken operations, opened the visit with an update on the company's drilling activity. He said drilling is getting faster, and production is increasing with constantly evolving technology. "We're getting better all the time," he said.

Parties fined $25K for unpermitted work on saltwater disposal well site

BISMARCK, N.D. – The North Dakota Industrial Commission voted Tuesday to impose a $25,000 civil penalty on four parties with ties to construction work done on a saltwater disposal well site in McKenzie County without a state permit. The complaint filed by Department of Mineral Resources Director Lynn Helms alleged that the work was performed on two days in May 2013 at a site about 10 miles northwest of Watford City.

STATE NEWS BRIEFS: Watford City's school enrollment up 19 percent

The following North Dakota news briefs were compiled by Forum Communication Co. newspapers:
Red River Zoo pursues world’s most endangered species FARGO, N.D. -- The Red River Zoo has plans to bring the most endangered species in the world to Fargo. The zoo is working on a project to obtain Amur leopards and Amur tigers. Only about 30 Amur leopards are left in the wild. A conservation organization asked the Red River Zoo to take on these endangered species because of the zoo’s breeding success with other cold-climate species.

North Dakota PSC candidates introduce plan to improve broadband access

FARGO, N.D. – Two Democratic candidates for the state Public Service Commission say they would make improving the state’s technology and Internet infrastructure a priority if elected. Tyler Axness and Todd Reisenauer, at a news conference Tuesday, announced a proposal called “Broadband North Dakota” that they say would ensure access to 6-megabytes-per-second Internet speeds for all residents and 1-gigabyte speeds for businesses.

Contractor threatens lien against stalled Griggs County Courthouse project

COOPERSTOWN, N.D. -- The general contractor on the stalled Griggs County Courthouse and Emergency Operations Center construction project has terminated its contract and is threatening to file a lien against the $3.5 million building. The contract with Construction Engineers of Grand Forks was scheduled to end at midnight Wednesday, according to Griggs County State’s Attorney Jayme Tenneson.

Woman charged with killing a great-grandmother in Facebooking, texting crash

HILLSBORO, N.D. – A Hatton woman faces criminal charges in the death of a great-grandmother after prosecutors allege she was on her cellphone texting and using Facebook when she rear-ended the car carrying the older woman. An arrest warrant for Abby Elaine Sletten, 20, was issued Wednesday in Traill County District Court for one count of negligent homicide, a Class C felony.

North Dakota ag shippers to have more rail options

FARGO, N.D. – Under a new deal signed Wednesday, North Dakota’s agricultural producers will have more options for rail shipping – a growing concern in a state where heavy oil traffic on rails has caused delays for other freight shipments.

PSC recommends final payment in grain company insolvency

BISMARCK, N.D. – The North Dakota Public Service Commission voted Thursday to recommend payment to the last remaining party with a claim against the insolvent Falkirk Farmers Elevator. The PSC voted 3-0 to recommend that a judge award about $461,000 to St. Hilaire Seed Co. of Mentor, Minn. If approved, the payment will close the insolvency case, Commissioner Randy Christmann said.

Sanford Health to hold private concert for employees featuring Keith Urban, The Band Perry

Sioux Falls show to celebrate opening of Sanford-sponsored Denny Sanford Premier Center
SIOUX FALLS, S.D. – Sanford Health will sponsor a private concert here for its employees featuring performances by country acts Keith Urban and The Band Perry. The health system, which brought in Grammy-winning band Train to mark the groundbreaking of its new medical center in south Fargo in 2012, will hold its latest concert Oct. 25.

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