House Republicans Approve $1.67 Million To Buy Ski Resort


In addition to voting down a school choice bill, and voting for Obamacare’s 45% expansion of the already bloated state Medicaid program, House Republicans also approved a Parks and Recreation budget (HB1019) which included $1.67 million to buy the Frost Fire Ski Resort.

You’ve heard of socialized medicine. This, I guess, is socialized recreation. Here’s the video of Rep. Jim Kasper objecting to the appropriation on the floor of the House:

If this budget passes the Senate, and is signed by Governor Dalrymple, we can add a state-owned skii resort to our state-owned bank and state-owned grain mill.

Rob Port is the editor of In 2011 he was a finalist for the Watch Dog of the Year from the Sam Adams Alliance and winner of the Americans For Prosperity Award for Online Excellence. In 2013 the Washington Post named SAB one of the nation's top state-based political blogs, and named Rob one of the state's best political reporters.

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  • Guest Observer

    WTF? Have the Republicans in Bismarck been kidnapped by aliens and replaced with liberals?

    • lucas

      Republicans in bismarck are liberals. They’d be democrats if they were honest and a dem could get elected locally, or the dem party would accept pro- lifers.

      • Kevin Flanagan

        I’ve got the state income and property tax bills to prove that!

      • opinionated


    • Goon

      Yes! They have….

    • Lynn Bergman

      One third Democrats, one third Republicrats and one third conservatives (Republitives AND Democratives). My end of session report will separate the three groups with great clarity.

      If you wish to be involved with change, visit

  • Dustin Gawrylow
    • opinionated

      Big deal some other state bought a ski resort, does that mean we jump off the same bridge. People get hurt everyday at ski resorts. Are we the taxpayers on the hook for the lawsuits that will ensue?

      • splined

        I suppose we will have to replace wore out bldgs and equipment as well since we have all the money.

  • Roy_Bean

    We are about to take $1.67 million of our surplus that we got by taxing the rich in the Bakken and use it to buy a ski resort. Could someone explain again why Barry Obama can’t tax the rich to run the country but we can tax the rich to run our state?

    • Goon

      What is wrong with the Republican Party in ND?

      • Guest Observer

        The party we once knew is now gone.

  • WOOF

    A ski resort, and a police station for $1.67 M sounds like a bargain.

    • jda

      were is the police station that would be several hundred k more

      • WOOF

        I thought the Fish Mounties would work out of the existing facility. Where though is the negotiation for the property? Does have a smell.

        • two_amber_lamps

          What? You have a job and work out of the existing facility?

          Oh, belay that… I thought you said FISHWRAP MONGER.

          Try to enunciate better Comrade YIP.

  • Dakotacyr

    No milk for kids, but a ski resort …… And these are conservatives.

    • Rob

      Well, to be fair, the milk for kids thing was pretty stupid, and 100% a political stunt by Democrats. ND school kids already get a pint of milk every day.

    • Kevin Flanagan

      Why haven’t they been weaned from milk?

  • Sue

    I am not one of the damn rich they force the extraction tax from. I am one of the force pooled “correlative rights protected”…OH HELL NO to my tax being used in this fashion.

  • jimmypop

    who do these people think they are….the fargo park district?

  • flamemeister

    ” Golly gee! We’ve got tons of money! How are we going to spend it all!”

  • opinionated

    Eat cake..someone wants a ski lodge and you swine are going to pay for it. These are your leaders and you mean nothing to them except your tax money.

  • Buffalo Bob

    Lots of Pro-Life Democrats. Big difference is Dems think its a personal -religious decision..
    Ski Resort for 1.67 million? Makes you wonder if the Industrial Commission approved a $1.67 million loan that went sour?

  • Pembina county resident

    I’d like to see the financials on Frost Fire to see if it is a lucrative business for our state to invest in. It would also be advantageous to see the estimates of purchasing or building a facility to house personnel from the Game and Fish Department. On another note, the ATV trail bids have the public questioning the rules and timelines for who is allowed to bid on them . Perhaps an outside investigation might reveal discrepancies and practices which violate state laws. If nothing else, it would stop the rumblings that not everyone is treated fairly in the bidding…

    • Pembina county resident

      These are the trails currently supervised in the rendezvous region where Frostfire is located.

  • jda

    If parks and recs run the lodge like the trail system, its going to take more than 1.67 mill I farmer next to the trails they are neet and clean looking but the project costs is a Joke good thing for tax dollars they would never make it in a private company makes me wonder whats going on in the back round.

  • borborygmi

    How much milk would that buy? Republican Reply “who cares”

    • Rob

      The kids are already getting a pint of milk a day. This spending is stupid, but so was that spending.

    • Guest

      The kids need a place to have a field trip. This is the exercise provision of the new K-12 funding.

      • toomuchguvmint

        This is a ski resort for the Canadian skiers. They have been keeping the doors of the resort open.

  • JoeMN

    I suppose they don’t have a billionaire sports team owner to spend the taxpayers money on.

    Want to know something real funny ?
    Republicans here are still wondering why they lost their majorities so quickly.

    • camsaure

      That is exactly what will happen, and we have proof here in ND called Hidey-Ho.

  • Patrick R. Pfeiffer

    I wonder how many political “retreats” and “business conferences” will take place there?

    • jda

      Do you plan on building the facilitys? you clearly didnt think the comment out I live 7 miles from the lodge You must have plans to build out there.

  • Patrick R. Pfeiffer

    Money looking for an outlet as opposed to a legitimate function of government looking for money.

  • NDConservative2011

    I guess when you have a friend serving in the legislature, you have opportunity for this friend to use his influence to have the state purchase your ski resort which you cannot sell on the open market for the amount that the state is being stuck with.
    I remember when the Eberts Ranch came up for sale with 5225 acres of land that the state had opportunity to purchase for recreational purposes at a price of $5.5 million. When you compare the acres in the two locations, which is the better deal for North Dakota. The 5225 acres is now owned and controlled by the U.S. Government.
    The 5225 acres is only open to hunters who have deeper pocketbooks then the average family who may wish to hunt on the property. To hunt on the new federally owned land, you need to pony up extra dollars. In my opinion, the legislature missed a golden opportunity to purchase the Eberts Ranch for the citizens of our state.
    Bear in mind that North Dakota’s land mass is about 95% privately held with the majority of the other 5% being owned by the U.S. Government. The U.S. Government has a large chunk that is national parks where recreartion such as hunting is not allowed. This leaves the U.S. National Grasslands in western North Dakota that does allow hunting, but in reality, leasing and grazing removes most of the cover for game.
    Having said this, access has always, and will continue to be a problem for the average hunter in North Dakota. With posting and leasing of land, hunting opportunities are being limited. Fee hunting is becoming more and more prevalent in North Dakota thus making hunting for a family too costly to continue.
    When the bill to purchase the Erberts Ranch came to the floor of the house, Representative Kasper had the insight to vote YEA. He understood the opportunities afforded our citizens.
    On the other hand, Representative Monson voted NAY to purchase the Eberts Ranch. He failed to have the same insight or the realization that we were losing 5225 acres of North Dakota land to the federal government. Apparently the ownership and control of the Eberts Ranch by the State of North Dakota was not as important as owning a small portion of land with a ski resort.
    Moving foreward, Representative Monson finds it important to purchase a ski resort from his friends who apparently cannot sell it on the open market for $1.67 million.
    I do know of 160 acres of slough land that has a small house on the property. It is 85% slough and would make a great “State Owned” hunting lodge. I was wondering if Representative Monson would be interested in introducing a bill to purchase the property. He could justify the purchase of this over priced property by claiming that the Game & Fish Department could utilize the property as a research center.
    Of coarse it would be a stretch as Representative Monson is not friends with the owner. We can only hope that the bill will be killed in the Senate.

    • bubba

      So you are saying Mr. Johnson up there in Walhalla is friends with Representative Monson, and this is why The Ski Resort allocation was appended to HB 1019. Do you know this to be true? If so, please explain.

      • NDConservative2011

        He certainly is friends with Mr. Johnson, and Mr. Johnson is one of his constituants as well. Being friends, I suggest that Representative Monson is carrying Mr. Johnson’s water.
        You seem to know the players, what is your take?

  • camsaure

    And we allready know Dullrumple hasn’t the klones to veto any of this BS. We need to keep exposing RINOs for what they are and what they are doing to us.

  • Daniel K. Jacobson

    This is one more bone headed move by North Dakota republican run government… This place was going under since nobody lives there… No business! So now the people of ND are on the hook for this year after year now. I love to ski but Frost Fire Ski Resort? LOL!

  • Daniel K. Jacobson

    More clear evidence that the North Dakota voters don’t get it, they put these people in office! Yikes… I’d be afraid.

  • Vugg

    and the reason we need a ski resort is ??? this could thin out some repubs next election time.

  • opinionated

    Will the taxpayers be liable for the injuries since they own the business?

  • Dallas

    The Republicans are wonderful. They vote to give the oil boys a multi-billion dollar tax break, then vote against eliminating sales taxes on cloths but approve buying a ski lodge. Great logic.

    By-the-by, the oil tax cut should be called the Ed Schafer employment act. It happened after Continental Oil agreed to put Ed on the Board of directors and pay him millions in exchange for his lobbying Republicans to vote for the tax break. They did, unanimously in the state Senate. After he gets it through the House, wonder how long the oil company will keep Ed on the payroll?

    • two_amber_lamps

      I would think the mis-allocation of gov’t funds would be right up your ally Comrade. RINO Kind-Conservative Centrist Panderers are much more akin to your sensibilities, eh Gun-Grabber?

    • Camburn

      Yes, there are problems with the oil tax relief bill that passed the Senate.

      It lowers the average oil extraction tax from 10.5% to 9.5%.
      There are some good points about this bill.

      I fully expect the see the language amended so that the net effect is revenue neutral before all is said and done.

  • Concerned Taxpayer

    I own property in the township, where this ski resort is located (West of Walhalla). We have too much state owned land (Game and Fish, etc.) here already.
    It is asinine to buy this ski lodge. The Canadians use it alot. I would like to know how the 1.67 million figure was from? Was the ski lodge placed for sale, placed on bids or appraised? Of course, it would cost many dollars to build it, but in my opinion, it should be left to private interests to own and operate it.
    Do not get me started on how the ND G & F “manages” its land.
    Yes, there are injuries and occasionally a death. Broken legs are the biggest injury and once in awhile, a death (someone runs into a tree). Who will be on the hook for that liability?
    If I remember back some years ago, the Canadians did not consider the ski lodge “compliant” to their ski standards. The news media in Manitoba broadcasted this in the media and the number of Canadian skiers plummented.
    There is alot to this issue, if you ask the locals.