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Bismarck, ND – North Dakota's Housing Finance Agency is preparing another bond issue -- to supply mortgage money for first-time home buyers.

Pat Fricke is the agency's director:

"We have had very good demand for our home mortgage finance program. A lot of first-time homebuyers have been purchasing homes. Our loan demand is on a pace for 100-million dollars in loan volumes for the year. And it is the time of the year where we're now needing to replenish our supply of funds for this fall and going into next winter."

Bismarck, ND – Boost -- then buckle. That's the message of a statewide campaign that kicked off today (Tuesday) encouraging the use of automobile booster seats for smaller children.

Carol Holzer of the North Dakota Health Department says the campaign will encourage parents to use booster seats -- along with shoulder and lap belts -- for children who are between 40 and 80 pounds and up to 4 feet eight inches tall.

Holzer says booster seats should be considered part of the transition in child safety restraints.

Bismarck, ND – The state Industrial Commission has voted to release a preliminary study of breathing problems among children in Coal Country.

The study is a work-in-progress -- in that the results need to be subjected to a peer-review before being finalized. The Commission had been asked to release the preliminary study -- and Governor Hoeven was agreeable to that....

Bismarck, ND – Low-income North Dakota families who signed up for the state's fuel assistance program will see a rebate on last winter's heating costs.

The state Department of Human Services is distributing one-point-four million dollars in rebates to more than 14-thousand households. The refunds are part of a federal program that helps poor families pay high heating bills. It's called the "Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program" -- and Ron Knutson is the director:

Bismarck, ND – North Dakota Congressman Earl Pomeroy says Americans have a lot to discuss after last week's terrorist attacks on New York and Washington, D.C. And he wants to listen.

This week Pomeroy is hosting a series of "community conversations" to talk about the terrorist attacks.

Fargo, ND – This year is the 58th anniversary of National Farm Safety Week and the Farm Safety Just 4 Kids Program is encouraging all Americans to put special emphasis on farm safety.

This year's theme is "Kids are Number One in 2001."

The mission of Farm Safety 4 Just Kids is to promote a safe farm environmentto prevent health hazards, injuries, and fatalities to children and youth.

Fargo, ND – North Dakota Governor John Hoeven is thanking North Dakotans for their many expressions of generosity and concern in the wake of last week's terrorist attacks on New York and Washington. He says New York Governor George Pataki is requesting that people who want to help donate to the newly established New York State World Trade Center Relief Fund.

Fargo, ND – Justice, not vengeance.

North Dakota Congressman Earl Pomeroy says that's how he and a lot of North Dakotans he's talked to in the past week say is the answer to how the United States should react to last week's terrorist attack.

Bismarck, ND – North Dakota Aeronautics Commission director Gary Ness says the new airport security procedures now in place remind him of what happened ten years ago.

"1991, Dessert Storm, we went to Level Four which changed the complexion, it was several months before the released it out. So those that remember '91, ten years ago, will remember the level of security and some of the inconveniences that come along with it."

Fargo, ND – Rebecca Coffey ? author of Unspeakable Truths and Happy Endings: Human Cruelty and the New Trauma Therapy ? says in times like these ? everyone needs to take care of the people they love. She makes several suggestions to parents on how to talk to children about trauma and difficult events.

1. Talk to your children using language that is easy to understand.

2. Assure your children that they are safe.

a. Be honest with your feelings.

b. Don't rush children through their feelings.

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