Dakota Access Pipeline | Prairie Public Broadcasting

Dakota Access Pipeline

Dave Thompson / Prairie Public

North Dakota’s state court system will be asking the Legislature for a $1.5 million deficiency appropriation – to deal with cases arising because of the Dakota Access Pipeline protests.

Court system finance director Don Wolf told the Senate Appropriations Committee the courts are anticipating around 400 jury trials related to arrested protestors. Wolf said there are a number of costs involved.

"The cost of surrogate judges, additional contract deputy clerks we may need to bring in, jury fees that we pay for jurors to come in, some meals costs and travel costs," Wolf said.

Amy Sisk / Inside Energy

North Dakota has never experienced anything like the battle over the 1,200 mile Dakota Access Pipeline. Thousands of people from across the globe flocked to a remote grassy field this year, building a village of tents and teepees from scratch.

Protests near construction sites and in the state capital of Bismarck led to clashes with police, whose armored vehicles and pepper spray played out on Facebook streams broadcast live to the world.

Corps of Engineers rejects DAPL easement

Dec 5, 2016
Amy Sisk / Prairie Public/Inside Energy

The Army Corps of Engineers says it will not grant an easement to allow the Dakota Access Pipeline to cross under Lake Oahe near the Standing Rock Reservation.

US Army Assistant Secretary for Civil Works Jo-Ellen Darcy said the decision means more consultation with the Standing Rock Tribe, as well as a new look at alternative routes.

This comes as welcome news to thousands of protestors who have been camped near the Cannonball River, on Corps land. Tribal spokesperson Ken Frost brought the news.

The Chairman of the North Dakota Veterans Coordinating Council spoke to reporters today ahead of upcoming involvement of a veterans group with demonstrations at the Dakota Access Pipeline next week.

Another $7 million allocated to deal with DAPL protest

Nov 30, 2016
Dave Thompson / Prairie Public

The state’s Emergency Commission has approved another $7 million for costs associated with the Dakota Access Pipeline protests.

"This is the third request," said Sheila Peterson of the North Dakota Office of Management and Budget. "It totals $17 million."

Peterson told the Commission the money will come from special funds, as well as Bank of North Dakota borrowing authority.

Gov. Jack Dalrymple said he’s made a number of requests for federal help to deal with those costs – but so far, the costs have gone unanswered.

Archambault: I'm focused on the water

Nov 29, 2016
Amy Sisk / Prairie Public/Inside Energy

The chairman of the Standing Rock Sioux tribe said he’s focused on one thing in the continuing dispute over the Dakota Access Pipeline.

Dave Archambault said it’s all about the water.

Speaking at a public forum in Bismarck Monday night, Archambault said his tribe believes protests should be prayerful and peaceful. But he said because of what he called “distractions,” the protests have strained the relationships between his tribe and the Bismarck-Mandan community.

Courtesy Governor's offic

Gov. Jack Dalrymple has issued an “emergency evacuation order” for the protest camp set up on Army Corps of Engineers’ land north of the Cannonball River.

In his order, Dalrymple said the onset of a winter storm, coupled with predictions of harsh conditions for the rest of the winter, and a lack of zoning for structures on Corps land means the protestors should leave – and not return. Dalrymple said emergency services probably will not be available to the camp because of weather.

Morton County Sheriff Kyle Kirchmeier said public safety is number one for all involved.

Amy Sisk/Inside Energy

While North Dakota’s Standing Rock Sioux Tribe makes headlines in protests against the Dakota Access Pipeline, oil development is playing out differently for another of the state’s Indian nations.

One hundred fifty miles up the Missouri River from Standing Rock, pipelines and pumpjacks are plenty on the Fort Berthold reservation.

Dave Thompson / Prairie Public

Bismarck Mayor Mike Seminary has a message for out of state people who are protesting the Dakota Access Pipeline: "It's time to go home to your families."

Protestors have marched on the state Capitol building, the William Guy Federal Building and the Wells Fargo Bank in Bismarck – and have blocked intersections. Seminary told Bismarck reporters most of the more than 500 people arrested during the protest come from out of state.

Dave Thompson / Prairie Public

Sen. Heidi Heitkamp (D-ND) said the Obama Administration needs to make a decision on the fate of the Dakota Access Pipeline.

The pipeline awaits a ruling by the Army Corps of Engineers about an easement, so the pipeline can be built underneath Lake Oahe. The pipeline has attracted thousands of protestors.

"Do not let this thing continue to play out," Heitkamp told Bismarck reporters. "Two more months before a decision, if that's what it's going to be, is not a direction -- but at least we can plan for it."