Guest Post: Legislature Doing Big Things For North Dakota


The 2013 North Dakota Legislative Session has reached the half way point known as crossover. That is the point where legislation that has passed the House and the Senate crosses over to be considered by the other legislative body.

Predictably, the first half has been like watching sausage be made. There are lots of options and ideas to grind through. Now, we get to take the best ideas and refine them. Our primary goals for the 2013 legislative session includes meaningful tax relief, sound fiscal management of the state budget, building adequate reserves for the future, and smart investments in our priorities of education and infrastructure.

By the end of the session, we are confident that we will pass a budget and legislation that will serve the best interests of the people of North Dakota for years to come.

One of the big issues we are working on in this session is tax relief, especially property tax relief. As of today, our plan for the next biennium includes over $766 million in property tax relief. We are also cutting personal income by $200 million and corporate income taxes by $50 million. The people of North Dakota will see over $1 billion in tax cuts during this session.

We are also working to reform property taxation in our state. Our plan includes limiting the tax increase on existing property to 3% unless the voters approve a larger increase. We are also requiring local subdivisions give you the information you need to understand the real total property taxes you are being charged and not just the amount remaining after the state buy down program.

Of course there is no bigger issue in this session than the state’s infrastructure plan. Right now, our plan calls for spending a record $4.2 billion on infrastructure including $2.3 billion for roads, $520 million for water and flood control projects, $219 million for oil impact grants and millions more for law enforcement, emergency services, low income housing and wilderness protection. Every corner of our state will benefit from this massive one-time investment.

K-12 education funding has always been a priority for Republican legislators. We are proud of our track record on education and this session will be no different. The plan includes spending $1.1 billion on our children’s schools, an increase of $162 million over the current biennium. Plus, we will be sending $740 million to school districts to buy down property taxes for a total investment in education of $1.8 billion.

One of the most controversial issues this session has been SB2336. Current law allows Bakken and Three Fork wells drilled on old stripper well property to avoid paying the 6.5% extraction tax and eliminates the extraction tax on all oil production completely if price drop dramatically.

By eliminating the stripper well loophole we raise oil taxes by $600 million over the next ten years. Also eliminating the low price trigger could increase oil taxes by $2 billion a biennium. In exchange, the bill will reduce the extraction tax on wells drilled after the state reaches one million barrels of oil production annually by 2%. Essentially, we will lock in the first million barrels of oil produced annually at a higher tax rate in exchange for a slightly lower tax on all oil production increases above one million barrels per year.

We are also working hard to protect your 2nd Amendment rights, ensure integrity of our elections and provide essential services for those less fortunate including expanding Medicaid and increasing funding for Human Services to $2.7 billion.

We’ve worked to create a great business climate in North Dakota which has led to unprecedented economic prosperity and thousands of new good jobs. Now, virtually every sector of our economy is growing. This legislative session is about putting that success to work for the benefit of all North Dakotans and meeting the challenges that come with growth.

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  • VocalYokel

    Your self-aggrandizing doesn’t cut the mustard with me fellas.
    I feel more like “The Legislature Has Done Big Things” TO “North Dakota” rather than “For” us.

  • WOOF

    You are providing welfare for oil wells.
    Eliminating/lowering extraction taxes is squandering the
    resources of the state and short changing its citizens.

    • JoeMN

      A little short sighted, aren’t we ?

      • Guest Observer

        He can’t help it. Liberalism is a mental disorder!!

        • WOOF

          You’re a serf.

          • Guest Observer

            Nah, don’t care to “serf”. Not much of a swimmer. But thanks for your concern!

    • Kevin Flanagan

      The only “resources” the state has were taken from those of us in the productive private sector!

    • camsaure

      Hey, ease up a bit, those two think (convoluted) just like you do.

    • Hal801

      The voters rejected property tax elimination, clearly they chose a different path that will lead to more oil development and good paying jobs.

  • Dallas

    Your gloss-over of the oil tax cut is appaling. The Ed Schafer Employment Act will cost the state billions over the next 20 years. You voted to cut oil taxes, killed a bill to remove the sales tax on clothing and then approved the purchase of a ski resort. And that was just in a one week. You ought to hang your heads in shame or plead stupidity.

    The oil industry hired Ed to lobby the bill to cut taxes and they’re paying him millions. He did a good job. Senate Republicans voted unanimously for the gift. So will House Republicans. Interesting to see how long they’ll keep ol’ Ed on the payroll after the session.

    Boys, you were bought. Between that and Margaret and Bette’s unrelenting rants on abortion and Jeff and Bob’s rants on money, and Jim objections to everything; you’re one sorry scene.

    • camsaure

      Wow, Mr Carlson and Warner, Dallas thinks like you RINOs and even he is pissed at you. LOL

  • The fighting Czech

    you seem to pretty proud of yourself, But this little clip tells how the rest of use feel when you all get together to “do the peoples work”

  • Roy_Bean

    I am in awe of the humility of these people.

  • sbark

    You also moved us down the road further into ObamaCare…………..with the go-along of Gov.’s magic move with the Medicaid expansion…..You think the message would’ve been clear with the outser of Pommeroy, Conrad and Dorgan over their votes for it.
    Hopefully there are statesman in the Senate.
    Statesmen worry about the well being of future generations……..politicians worry about the next election…..

    • Tall Tom

      We send a signal with their leaving and immediately turn around and send Heidi to the Senate. What type of message did that send? The people want the handouts and expect Heidi to keep sending them.

      • sbark

        conflicitng “message” for sure. Could it be the majority of our GOP state Reps buy into the message from Heidi that she will be “independent” of Obama……….if so, we better start toeing the collectivist line

      • camsaure

        Well, the RINOs have’nt been very honest with us and have defacated on the conservative base. What do you expect? Who needs RINO Republicans when they are no different than dems? They are both doing us great harm.

        • opinionated

          Exactly.. These people are rhinos not conservatives. We are living amongst rhinos, populists and new progressives..

  • Guest Observer

    Sen Wardner and Rep Carlson, will all due respect, you have to be kidding!! Everytime I checked on what was happening with the legislature, I would learn of more votes to stop tax relief for us common folk. Then we learn the house wants to buy a 1.67 million dollar ski resort. I could go on and on but you guys are out of control. As a tax payer and business owner, both the house and the senate really piss me off!!! Glad you do not meet every year!!!

    • Tall Tom

      They are better that just turning over everything to “Democratic” governor like Dalrymple.

      • camsaure

        I could give some of them credit, but certainly not the majority and also sadly not the majority of the so called republican party in this state.

      • sbark

        It appears Gov D’rymple is running N.Daks govt from a how-to book written by GWBush………..and both had a complicit congress willing to just spend money without thought

  • TexasJew

    Since Nodaks were stupid enough to get up one morning in November and vote for Heidi Heitkamp, there is no point to expect anything remotely intelligent on the economic front from them or their representatives.
    You need more Texans up here to explain that whole free enterprise thing. It seems to have escaped 2/3rds of North Dakotans.
    Getting Welfare and endless subsidies from Uncle Sugar is not Free Enterprise, btw.
    It’s socialism.

    • two_amber_lamps

      Getting Welfare and endless subsidies from Uncle Sugar is not Free Enterprise, btw. It’s socialism.

      And eventually will end up sinking this country… Like CA, NY, IL, ad nauseum.

    • zdavid53

      Why are you up here when you had such a good place you came from? Things that were’nt working in texas won’t work here either. Look around Toto, this ain’t Texass.

      • camsaure

        Maybe he is here because of his expertise that he learned in Texas. The RINOs in this state could learn a lot from Texas, so far their govt seems to be looking out for their rights a whole lot more then our piss poor excuse for a govt in this state. The state govt did little to nothing to create this last good fortune of wealth we are enjoying(and probably squandering).

        • The Fighting Czech

          Dont be idolizing Texas too much. Judging by the news report of some of the preposterous things going on in their schools They need to stop patt’in themselves on the back and start taking care of business in the schools, or in a generation Austin will be filled with “Progressive” thinkers. and freedom will become a fading distant memory for Texas, as its becoming for many of the rest of Americans.

          • camsaure

            Yes, I agree they also have a ways to go and Austin is the “San Francisco” of Texas. We will probably always be under assault from the progressives also. But at least they don’t appear to have as many have sellouts like Carlson Warner, and Dullrumple. It seems that lately they have some in power who “get it”.

    • pandorumrarr

      More Texans? No, it really doesnt matter because I have seen in the last few years that oil companies in the Bakken are bringing in and hiring alot of really brainless people that still think the Democrats are out to save them. They become Nodaks and influence the locals to start thinking like a libtard. For example, with all the young hypocrite gold digging tramp “Christian” women living in Dickinson falling for the dumb uneducated moron show off with a thick wallet and works for Halliburton or maybe Nabors is a liberal like most cases, it is most likely them dummies will influence the locals that way turning them witch catholic girls into libtards. Well, what is the difference? Most of the Catholics are idiot liberals anyway. Im drunk right now. I lived in ND for 6 years and I sure am glad I got my business and workers out of there because you Nodaks dont know how to vote and you keep falling for Joel Heitkamps and Ed Shultz’s bul#!^ lies. I hate North Dakota but I sure am glad I made my businesssd. Im going to bed.

  • Carter Wood

    It’s been a long time since I’ve been in North Dakota, but I do know this: Rich Wardner and Al Carlson are good men, trying to do the best for the state.

    • Guest Observer

      Don’t doubt that but actions speak louder than words…………

    • the Fighting Czech

      “Most of the harm in the world is done by good people, and not by accident, lapse, or omission. It is the result of their deliberate actions, long persevered in, which they hold to be motivated by high ideals toward virtuous ends.”

      Isabel Paterson (author)

    • camsaure

      Wow, You have to be a “dyed in the wool” socialist to really believe that.

    • Dallas

      Carter has always been a very modest person. And Carter has much to be modest about.

  • TexasJew

    North Dakota will never be a populous state. UND and NDSU will never rival UMichigan or Michigan State
    The majority of UND and NDSU grads will go elsewhere to start their careers. Why should North Dakotans continue to heavily subsidize the Twin Cities by giving Minnesotans a cheap education alternative right on their western border?
    Why should all this revenue be poured into such worthless causes?
    Shouldn’t the state stop fretting about how to shovel money into these Tier II and III universities and focus on trying to improve the business climate of North Dakota?

    • Guest Observer


    • The Fighting Czech

      Dont forget the oil fields… big wages are going to people who are from out of state and dont ever plan to stay in ND. they pay no ND state income tax. same with the seasonal farm workers. they come up here, take our free health care and child care benefits. government supplied day care, and schooling. then move back home to a state that doesnt have income taxes, and collect unemployment… HEY thats something the legislators can do…. include Texas to the list of those that are exempt from paying sales tax…..How could you guys have miss this?????

      • pirate29

        Yep, those are them companies hiring their buddies, friends and family members. Halliburton, Nabors, MBI, Ensign, SCUMburger, etc… They hire all the felons, drunks, people who cannot drive or have no CDL or a license at all, trouble makers, the list of azzholes goes on. ND oil jobs are just a big hoax. And think about it people. They are not all that great of wages. You could do just as good or even better going to Gwinner and working for Doosan and put up with the terrible management there because the cost of living is dirt cheap and the wage is great. The oil industry is NOT the best thing your state has. The oil companies human resources has messed up BIG TIME in the last 10 years and it is starting to affect them because alot more people want them out. I am for big oil and am a huge conservative but western ND and the locals messed up and you will all see why.

    • Nelly

      When the state is willing to settle for egotistical leaders like Kelley and Bresciani that have no connections to help elevate there institutions at a national level they will remain tier II and tier III institutions. The only hope this state has in higher education is to have a strong unified system led by a solid pragmatic academic leader with vision.

      We have one but the presidents and their allies are doing everything they can to run him out of the state. Every rumor and innuendo is published as fact. Those who want to destroy any chance of a unified system are piling on and those who want a constitutional change and dislike everything about the higher education system are doing the same.

      About the only smear that has not been used is sex. Next we will hear allegations he is gay, had a child out of wedlock, having an affair, his wife is having an affair or that they are California group swingers. It is happen somewhere just wait and see. The people attempting to bring him down will stop at nothing.

      • ec99

        There is no higher ed in ND. It’s all about power an money. Shirvani never stood a chance; he should have seen the lesson of Potts.The status quo will continue to reign: it just depends on who runs it: the legislature, the presidents, or the governor. If I were a high school senior, I’d high tail it outta of here to a school that didn’t see me as only a dollar sign.

        • devilschild

          My triplets aren’t going to UND next year. They are going to finish their last two years of school at UMichigan…closer to home. We are tired of the BS.

          • ec99

            Good choice.

          • Dakotacyr

            As they say don’t let the door hit you on the way out!

          • ec99

            They who have no ability to reply.

  • guest

    when are the house and senate going to cap their spending at 3% like you want to do to the local government?

  • loadofcrap

    What a load of crap.

  • ec99

    Every biennium you clowns schlepp off to Bismarck in order to spend more, tax more, and control your constituents. Bottle rockets, Sunday shopping, pharmacies…it’s none of your business. Your arguments in floor debates would be comical, if it weren’t for the fact you’re serious. When some Yahoo argues that Sunday shopping hours permit the devil to enter in, it’s time for him to hang it up and head for the home. You are the best argument against “citizen legislators” I can think of.

    • Guest Observer

      Very well put!!

    • zdavid53

      If you want to change things, talk to a lot of people, present your ideas and then run for these offices. If people agree with you, you can then change the laws and create the kingdom you’re looking for.

      • ec99

        The Legislature follows an anchronistic schedule, set up when most representatives were farmers. Why do you think they meet during the winter? Now, only those who are wealthy, owners of businesses, or students can serve? Who else can get off? The remuneration is pohibative for those who have to support a family. Thus you get the same parade of slugs.

        • opinionated

          Well said my friend… Well said

        • Drain52

          When do you think they should meet?

          • ec99

            Timing is only part of the problem. Change the system so that a wider panorama of candidates is possible. Also institute a “None of the above” ballot possibility.

  • Patrick R. Pfeiffer

    “Of all tyrannies a tyranny sincerely exercised for the good
    of its victim may be the most oppressive. It may be better to live
    under robber barons than under omnipotent moral busybodies.
    The robber baron’s cruelty may sometimes sleep, his cupidity may
    at some point be satiated, but those who torment us for our own good
    will torment us without end for they do so with the approval
    of their own conscience.” -C.S. Lewis

  • Guest

    “Oh-and we workedf closely with the Governor to go full speed into Medicaid expansion and Obamacare even though the vast majority of our constituents elected us to do the exact opposite.”

    • camsaure


  • camsaure

    It looks to me that the legislature is doing “big things” TO North Dakota, not for them. You socialist RINOs don’t have the people fooled anymore. Why don’t you just show some honesty and switch to the dem party?

  • ec99

    Quite frankly, Mr. Carlson, after your nickname law, which reenforced every stereotype of North Dakotans as redneck rubes, I’m surprised you didn’t slouch away and keep bees in Sussex. But since you, like your equally incompetent predecessor, Earl Strinden, are all about power, it’s no wonder you’re still around. Maybe you can run against Heidi in six years.

  • camsaure

    Holy Cow! We used to have three idiots representing us in Washington that fed us CRAP just like this all the time. I think I need a shower after reading all this BS.

  • camsaure

    I hate to break this news to you, But in reality most of us do not trust you and you brought that on yourselves.

  • sbark

    Am I the only one with the thought that between Hoevans spending and now D’rympls spending, especially his willingness to move toward Obamacare………..
    …..parrallels GWBush spending and willingness to appease the left with spending on the Lefts pet projects such as No Child, medicare drugs etc etc………
    Every week we can quote Obama, Pelosi, Reid parrot how GW got us into this mess, and more spending is needed to get us out………….jjjjjeeeeezzzzzz..
    ……..Cannot politicians see how history repeats and make even a token attempt at not repeating the mistakes of their predecesors?
    Does one notice the left in N.Dak is silent as the drift toward ObamaCare is taken care of for them……..without even a fight……….that alone should be a huge red flag to the GOP.
    If a party of 100% failure at any level nationwide is not disenting……the NDAk GOP better wake up

  • flamemeister

    The ND Legislature has mastered the art of doing “almost-Big Things.” They have successfully avoided anything innovative or imaginative. “Where there is no vision, the people perish.”

  • Mike Peterson

    Please stop calling it “property tax relief” when all you’re doing is shifting the burden from local to state, thus encouraging local municipalities to spend frivolously, as Williston has shown.

  • opinionated

    You also are considering a ski lodge that the citizens of North Dakota are buying and will remain responsible for. You have failed to address the corruption at North Dakota Higher Ed. You are also making it harder for these who pay your salary to bring forward initiated measures. You do not care whether our election laws are tightened. You refuse to understand school choice. You are doing nothing meaningful for property tax owners.

  • Hal801

    I didn’t see anything about protecting North Dakotans from warrantless drone searches.