Dakota Download Governor Burgum's Weekly Update - August 31, 2018

Gov. Burgum shakes hands with Darrell Oswald at the Oswald Ranch near Wing as Oswald's son, also named Darrell, looks on.

Governor participates in grasslands tour

On Tuesday, Gov. Doug Burgum participated in the 2018 Grasslands Policy Tour, sponsored by the North Dakota Grazing Lands Coalition and Prairie Pothole Joint Venture. Attendees toured two Burleigh County ranches – the Oswald Ranch near Wing and the Black Leg Ranch near McKenzie – and heard from ranchers and industry leaders as they shared conservation best practices and results of their own management strategies. Following the tour, Burgum spoke and thanked organizers and attendees, highlighting the important role our state's grasslands play in production agriculture.

Burgum thanks Minnesota DNR for thorough environmental review of new Fargo-Moorhead diversion alternative

Gov. Doug Burgum on Monday applauded the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources (DNR) for its work to publish the draft supplemental Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) for the Fargo-Moorhead Area Diversion Project.

“We commend Minnesota DNR staff for their tireless efforts in preparing this draft statement, which builds on the strong work of the F-M Area Flood Diversion Task Force that Gov. Dayton and I formed last fall. The DNR’s rigorous and thorough analysis of 33 alternatives underscores their commitment to protecting the Fargo-Moorhead area from catastrophic flooding. Working together, our two states can reach a solution that balances project impacts with the critical need to safeguard the region’s largest population center and economic engine, and the Plan B alternative is the most viable solution to provide permanent protection for the metro area.”

Burgum and Dayton agreed in October to create and co-chair the Task Force to try to address the DNR’s concerns about the diversion project. Construction on the project began in spring 2017, but a federal judge approved a temporary injunction on Sept. 7, 2017, ordering work to stop. The ruling recognized the need for permanent flood protection for Fargo-Moorhead and strongly encouraged all parties to work together to agree on a project that can serve the interests of both states and the affected communities.

The F-M Diversion Board of Authority submitted a revised permit application for the diversion project in March after accepting the Task Force’s recommendations. Because the new alternative hadn’t been evaluated in the DNR’s previous final EIS, Minnesota law required the DNR to prepare a supplemental EIS.

Sanford shares experience with Census 2020 task force

Lt. Gov. Brent Sanford was invited to speak to the Census 2020 Complete Count Taskforce on Tuesday, sharing his experience as a community leader in fast-growing Watford City during the 2010 census. Sanford, North Dakota Census Office Manager Kevin Iverson and other task force members emphasized the importance of accurately counting every North Dakotan in 2020 to ensure that all populations are treated fairly and that the state and its communities receive proper political representation and their proper share of federal funding. To learn more about the state’s Census 2020 efforts, visit the Department of Commerce’s website here.

Governor speaks to Department of Trust Lands team members

On Friday, Gov. Burgum visited the Department of Trust Lands to speak to team members during their monthly staff meeting. While there, Burgum outlined the administration's approach to reinventing state government and thanked the team for the work they do to Empower People, Improve Lives and Inspire Success.

The primary responsibility of the Department of Trust Lands is the management of the permanent educational trust funds and assets under the Board of University and School Lands’ control as outlined in the North Dakota Constitution. State law also gives the department the responsibility for managing several funds and mineral acres in addition to the trust assets, operating the state Unclaimed Property Division and the Energy Infrastructure and Impact Office.

Burgum, Sanford meet with Spirit Lake officials on tax issues

Gov. Burgum, Lt. Gov. Sanford and other state officials met Wednesday with Spirit Lake Nation Chairwoman Myra Pearson, Vice Chairman Doug Yankton Sr. and other tribal officials to discuss the potential for establishing a framework that would enable specific tribal-state tax agreements on a variety of tax types. Others in attendance included Tax Commissioner Ryan Rauschenberger and his staff; state Sen. Dwight Cook, R-Mandan, who chairs the Senate Taxation Committee; and North Dakota Indian Affairs Commission Executive Director Scott Davis and his staff. Members discussed draft legislation that will be considered at the next meeting of the interim Tribal Taxation Issues Committee. Strengthening tribal partnerships is one of Gov. Burgum’s five strategic initiatives.

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