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Legislature to look at $1.8 million cost overrun in the Attorney General's office

Attorney General Drew Wrigley Swearing In
Poppy Mills/NDDOT
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NDDOT - Photo Archive
Drew Wrigley was sworn in as the new ND Attorney General

Two Legislative committees will be looking at a $1.8 million cost overrun for a building leased by the state Attorney General’s office that houses the Bureau of Criminal Investigation, the state Fire Marshal and the Lottery.

Attorney General Drew Wrigley told the Legislature’s Budget Section the overrun was discovered in January 2021, under his predecessor, Wayne Stenehjem. Wrigley says $1.4 million was paid to the owners immediately, while the other $400,000 is being paid through the monthly lease payment.

Wrigley said he met with the majority and minority leaders of the House and Senate before the Budget Section meeting to make them aware of the overrun.

"We have been, and are going to be, completely transparent about this matter," Wrigley told the Budget Section. "We are doing everything we can to resolve it internally."

House Majority Leader Chet Pollert (R-Carrington) moved that the Legislative Audit and Fiscal Review Committee, as well as the Government Administration Committee review the matter.

"We've got to go through to find out what is what, and what is where, and why and how come," Pollert said. "I do believe that the Appropriations Committees in the House and Senate would have found this, because I think it would have stuck out like a sore thumb."

Wrigley took office Feb. 9th. Stenehjem died Jan. 28th of cardiac arrest.

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