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Changing the oil tax 'bucket list'


The North Dakota House is proposing a change in the way the “buckets” for oil tax dollars are structured.

The change is outlined in the budget bill for the Office of Management and Budget.

Rep. Don Vigesaa (R-Cooperstown) said the current bucket system was the result of the passage of the so-called “Prairie Dog” bill in the 2019 Legislature. That bill set up the buckets for aid to local governments for infrastructure projects. Vigesaa said the current system has the “bucket” for larger cities ahead of the bucket for the Strategic Investments and Improvements fund. He said the bill changes the order,

"So then it will be 'SIIF," at $400 million,  then the larger city, the smaller city and the county and township buckets will be below the SIIF," Vigesaa said.

Vigesaa told the House the main reason for the change is because of the new COVID relief package Congress is now discussing.

"Preliminary information says that out of the stimulus package coming from the federal government, there's going to be approximately $240 million coming for political subdivisions," Vigesaa said.

Vigesaa said the larger cities bucket would normally collect $30 million. He said that would give the SIFF Fund another $30 million, and that money would then be available for Legislative priorities.

The bill is HB 1015. It will now be considered by the Senate.

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