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Corrected: Legislators will deal with 50 interim studies

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North Dakota’s Legislative Management Committee has chosen the issues lawmakers will study over the 2021-2022 interim.

"We have 50 studies that were approved for this upcoming biennium," said Sen. Raymon Holmberg (R-Grand Forks), the committee's chairman. "Last biennium, we had 47. So there wasn't much of a change in that regard."

Holmberg said there will be 25 or 26 interim committees. But he said there are some committees established in the past that won’t be around this time.

"For example, you will see we do not have a Commerce Committee," Holmberg said. "We do not have a Transportation Committee."

But Holmberg said there will be a few new committees. One will be a Retirement Committee.

"It will look at the state employees retirement system -- PERS," Holmberg said.

Holmberg said that committee will study the issue of whether the state retirement system will go from a “defined benefit” plan to a “defined contribution” plan – something the Legislature has considered for a number of years.

"The reluctance of the Legislature to pull the trigger is, lawmakers are really not sure on what the final cost would be," Holmberg said. "We would be irresponsible if we went into a new system without having a pretty good idea on what it will cost the taxpayers."

Holmberg said the next step is to send a questionnaire to legislators – asking which committees they would like to serve on. He said the Management Committee will meet again June 9th to make those committee selections. Holmberg said he expects there will be a lot of interest in the redistricting committee, which will start drafting new Legislative district boundaries, ahead of a special session later this year.

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