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It’s Come To This: Kids Now Bootlegging Sugary Drinks In School

It’s Come To This: Kids Now Bootlegging Sugary Drinks In School

It’s a sign of the times. Defying a ban on sugary drinks at his school, which only allows diet sodas, Canadian high schooler Keenan Shaw got suspended for selling Pepsis out of his locker. But, like a modern day Al Capone except selling fizzy drinks instead of booze, Shaw isn’t letting “the man” get him down.


North Dakota’s Tougher DUI Laws Are Creating Jail Space Problems

During the 2013 session, the North Dakota Legislature made some sweeping changes to the state’s DUI laws. Here’s a summary: The minimum fine for first-time offenders goes from $250 to $500. First-timers with a BAC twice the legal limit – 0.16 percent or greater – will now be guilty of a new aggravated DUI category


Local Officials In Williston Are About To Make The Housing Shortage A Lot Worse

There’s no question that housing shortages are a big issue in North Dakota. Booming population growth, uncertain capital, and a weather-constrained construction season have created a situation where demand for a place to live is seriously outstripping supply. Thus the (somewhat exaggerated) national stories about apartments in the state’s oil patch costing as much as


Fargo Forum Completely Misses The Story On The NDSU Rail Delay Report

Today the Fargo Forum picks up some of my reporting on a controversial rail delays report requested from North Dakota State University by Senator Heidi Heitkamp, but they completely miss the most important detail in the story and they allow spin to stand for fact. For instance, the Forum report states that NDSU professor Frayne


Rod St. Aubyn: Is North Dakota Electing Too Many Offices?

What do the offices of State Auditor, State Treasurer, Insurance Commissioner, Public Service Commissioners, Superintendent of Public Instruction, Secretary of State, Attorney General, Agriculture Commissioner and Tax Commissioner have in common? In North Dakota all of these offices have elected heads of the respective agencies. That is not the case in many other states. Many


Legislator: Lack Of NDSU Cooperation On IT Security Contributed To Payroll Breach

Yesterday I broke the news that the North Dakota University System has seen another IT security breach. This time it involved a phishing scam that saw the payroll deposits of university system employees diverted. Tu-Uyen Tran has more details: It happened during the most recent payroll cycle when the employees fell victim to what’s known

oil pump sunset

North Dakota Oil Counties Pay Property Tax Rate 30% Lower Than Non-Oil Counties

Earlier today I vented a bit about local leaders in western North Dakota who, even after legislators announced some $800 million in “surge” funding to meet needs, seem to think that no amount of money will ever be enough to address oil impacts. What frustrates me about this debate is that we spend a lot

Many  bundle of US 100 dollars bank notes

This Is Why We Need More Scrutiny On Western North Dakota Spending

I often get asked why I’m so skeptical of demands for ever-increasing oil patch spending. I’ll tell you that it’s not because I don’t recognize a need for spending in the west. With a booming economy, bustling commerce and explosive population growth there’s no question that we need more of just about everything out west.