Dakota Download Governor Burgum's Weekly Update - August 11, 2019

A delegation of North Dakota officials toured petrochemical facilities in Alberta on Wednesday, Aug. 7, 2019, including ATCO’s facilities near Josephburg, Alberta. Pictured from left are ATCO Ltd. Chair and CEO Nancy Southern, North Dakota Department of Mineral Resources Director Lynn Helms, Commerce Commissioner Michelle Kommer, ATCO Energy Solutions Senior Vice President and General Manager Steven Piepgrass, Deputy Commerce Commissioner Shawn Kessel, House Majority Leader Chet Pollert, Gov. Doug Burgum, Senate Majority Leader Rich Wardner and Bank of North Dakota President and CEO Eric Hardmeyer. (Photo credit: ND Department of Commerce)

Burgum leads delegation on tour of petrochemical facilities in Canada in effort to bring industry to ND

Gov. Doug Burgum led a delegation of state officials and legislative leaders on a tour of petrochemical facilities in the Canadian province of Alberta as part of ongoing efforts to bring the petrochemical industry to North Dakota to add value to the state’s ample natural gas resources and grow the economy.

The group consisting of Burgum, Senate Majority Leader Rich Wardner, House Majority Leader Chet Pollert, Commerce Commissioner Michelle Kommer, Bank of North Dakota President Eric Hardmeyer, Department of Mineral Resources Director Lynn Helms and Commerce Deputy Commissioner Shawn Kessel toured petrochemical facilities in Alberta’s Industrial Heartland and met with industry officials to learn more about the opportunities, workforce needs and economic impacts associated with the industry.

“North Dakota has abundant, rich natural gas that could be processed right here in our state to create jobs, diversify the economy and grow wealth in our communities,” Burgum said. “Gaining a better understanding of how Alberta developed its petrochemical industry will help us choose the right path for processing North Dakota gas at home. Bringing this industry to our state will allow oil producers to fully implement their drilling and production investments while also helping us solve the flared gas issue that continues to limit the Bakken’s growth. We’re grateful to our Canadian hosts for sharing their knowledge and expertise in this high-potential area.”

The Department of Commerce estimates that primary and secondary refinement of North Dakota’s rich natural gas could draw more than $9 billion in capital investment while providing hundreds of good-paying jobs and generating additional tax and royalty revenue.

Governor and First Lady congratulate Spirit Lake Recovery and Wellness Center on grand opening

Gov. Burgum and First Lady Kathryn Burgum joined officials from the Cankdeska Cikana Community College (CCCC) and the United Health Foundation alongside Spirit Lake Nation tribal leaders and community members on Tuesday during a ceremony to open a new residential substance abuse treatment center for adults.

The center will address the need for access to culturally competent treatment and support for long-term recovery within the Spirit Lake community. The facility is a significant milestone in a three-year partnership between CCCC and United Health Foundation focused on building healthier communities.

"Projects like this truly make a difference: by easing the financial burden and societal impacts of addiction; by breaking the cycle of addiction; by allowing families to stay together; and by letting communities, instead of being torn apart by addiction and overdoses, grow closer and stronger," Gov. Burgum said.

United Health Foundation announced a $1.2 million grant in February 2018 to expand access to substance abuse treatment in Spirit Lake and support long-term recovery and wellness. The grant paid for the renovation of this new facility. United Health Foundation is also providing in-kind assistance for developing workforce strategy to staff the treatment center to provide high-quality care. The treatment center will serve both tribal and non-tribal members.

Burgum announces speaker lineup, agenda for 2019 Governor’s Summit on Innovative Education

Gov. Burgum announced the speaker lineup and agenda for the third annual Governor’s Summit on Innovative Education Aug. 14-15 at Jamestown High School in Jamestown, N.D.

The summit, which is open to the public, convenes local and national education leaders to share best practices and engage with educators, administrators, parents and students.

Among the featured presenters is Dr. Stuart Ablon, director of Think:Kids in the Department of Psychiatry at Massachusetts General Hospital and an associate professor and Thomas G. Stemberg Endowed Chair in Child and Adolescent Psychiatry at Harvard Medical School, who will address the topic of school discipline. Ablon conducts training for parents, educators and clinicians and helps organizations implement the Collaborative Problem Solving approach, an evidence-based model designed for children and adolescents with a wide range of social, emotional and behavioral challenges.

A full list of presenters and registration information is available here. The summit agenda also can be viewed here.

The first day of the summit will focus on innovative instructional best practices to personalize learning, as well as other community-derived solutions to best prepare young people for the 21st century economy and global citizenship. The summit’s second day will focus on behavioral health in an educational setting and how school personnel can play a key role in identifying the early warning signs of an emerging mental health condition and in linking students with effective services and supports.

The summit also will include presentation of the #InnovativeND education awards, which recognize the great work being done by educators to prepare students for success in a global economy being driven by rapid technological change.

This year’s summit is being held in partnership with the North Dakota Department of Public Instruction, North Dakota Council of Educational Leaders, ND United, North Dakota School Boards Association and the state Department of Human Services’ Behavioral Health Division. The Bush Foundation is sponsoring the event.

Committee selects five members for new ND Ethics Commission, thanks applicants

A committee tasked with selecting members of North Dakota’s newly created Ethics Commission reached consensus Thursday on appointing the first five members to the voter-approved Commission. All five members verbally accepted their appointment.

The selection committee consists of Gov. Doug Burgum, Senate Majority Leader Rich Wardner, R-Dickinson, and Senate Minority Leader Joan Heckaman, D-New Rockford. During its fourth meeting, the committee reached consensus on appointing five members from a pool of nearly 70 applicants.

By a 3-0 vote, the committee selected:

  • David B. Anderson of Bismarck, a retired brigadier general in the North Dakota National Guard who now works as coordinator of military student services at the University of Mary in Bismarck.
  • Ronald Goodman of Oakes, a former attorney and retired judge who served as a district court judge from 1994 to 2006.
  • E. Ward Koeser of Williston, a former teacher, military veteran and telecommunications business owner who served as Williston’s mayor from 1994 to 2014.
  • Cynthia Lindquist of Devils Lake, who has served as president of Cankdeska Cikana Community College in Fort Totten since 2013.
  • Paul Richard of Fargo, a retired executive vice president and former general counsel at Sanford Medical Center in Fargo.

North Dakota voters approved a constitutional amendment in November 2018 establishing an Ethics Commission “to strengthen the confidence of the people of North Dakota in their government, and to support open, ethical, and accountable government.” The Commission consists of five members appointed by consensus agreement of the governor and the Senate majority and minority leaders.

Clarifying legislation approved in April requires the members’ terms to be staggered. The selection committee determined that Goodman and Lindquist will each serve a four-year term, Anderson will serve a three-year term and Koeser and Richard will each serve a two-year term, effective Sept. 1 after taking the oath of office. Goodman was designated as the Commission’s convening chair to call the first meeting.

Burgum, Heckaman and Wardner all expressed their gratitude for the excellent pool of candidates who applied to serve on the Commission, and to each other for the collegial selection process that resulted in an excellent group of initial members for the Commission. Read more about the new members at the link below.

Lt. Gov. Sanford visits North Bakken Expansion Project open house

Lt. Gov. Brent Sanford met with representatives from WBI Energy to learn more about its North Bakken Expansion Project, a pipeline expansion that will have the capacity to take over half of the current flared gas in North Dakota.

"A strong network of natural gas pipelines is essential for the future of North Dakota's oil and gas industry," Sanford said, "and projects like this are a great step forward in responsible energy development."

Construction on the project is slated to begin in early 2021.

Cabinet leaders, legislators tour newest medical marijuana dispensary

Cabinet leaders and legislators on Thursday toured the newest medical marijuana dispensary in North Dakota, which is set to open this week in Bismarck. It is the fourth medical marijuana dispensary to open in the state, following facilities in Fargo, Grand Forks and Williston. Four more locations are expected to open across the state before the end of 2019.

After North Dakota voters approved a measure to create a medical marijuana program in the state, the 65th Legislative Assembly passed legislation instructing the Department of Health to implement the program with input from various stakeholders and experts. Today, more than 950 registry identification cards have been issued to qualifying patients.

For a qualifying patient or designated caregiver to enter the display area of a dispensary, they must have their registry identification card. Information for applicants is available on the Division of Medical Marijuana’s website.

Photographer Char-Marie Flood's work is now on display in the Capitol.

Works by Harwood artist Char-Marie Flood on display in Capitol

The North Dakota Council on the Arts (NDCA), in partnership with Gov. Burgum and several other elected officials, is now displaying the photographs of Char-Marie Flood in several locations in the Capitol. She has served as an artist-in-residence in several capacities, most recently in Medora during the summer of 2016.

Artists looking to represent their region with artwork placed in the Capitol can submit a brief resume along with links to their work to the NDCA, 1600 E. Century Ave., Suite 6, Bismarck, ND 58503. Artists are selected for quarterly display.

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