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General News

Heating assistance funds available

Jan 10, 2020

North Dakota has $19 million available for heating assistance to low income households this winter.

It’s through the “LIHEAP” program.

North Dakota Department of Human Services economic assistance director Michele Gee said assistance is based on household income.

"In North Dakota, we look at incomes up to 60 percent of the state median income," Gee said. "For example, a household of three would qualify with income of $49,021 per year, and for a household of two, $39,600 per year."

A Bismarck man is dead after being shot by West Dakota SWAT officers in an incident last night.

Officers responded to the 100 block of Riverside Park Road at about 10 pm, after receiving a 9-1-1 call from a neighbor. The caller said there was a lot of sawing and hammering noises, and said he had heard the man say he had a bomb.

The January 1st Run-Off Forecast by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers points to a “very large run-off year” for the Missouri River Basin above Sioux City, Iowa. Prairie Public's Todd McDonald has details...

Dave Thompson / Prairie Public

A legislator from Kathryn is running for state treasurer.

Rep. Daniel Johnston (R-Kathryn) is finishing his first term in the House. The current treasurer – Kelly Schmidt –is not running for re-election. She has served in that office for 16 years.

"I have a desire to serve the people of North Dakota, and this opportunity opened up," Johnston said in an interview. "I wish Kelly (Schmidt) would run for another 16 years -- she's done such a good job. But I decided it was time to put up or shut up."

Sanford-Bismarck begins visitation restrictions

Jan 7, 2020

Health officials are seeing a spike in the number of lab-certified cases of influenza around North Dakota. Due to those rising numbers officials at Sanford Health in Bismarck are putting restrictions on who should and should not visit hospital patients. Julie Jacobson is a registered nurse and manager of the infection prevention department at Sanford-Bismarck…

The United Way in Bismarck is starting 2020 by offering the area’s first 24-hour emergency shelter. Executive Director Jena Gullo joined our Dave Thompson to share how community support made it happen.

Dave Thompson / Prairie Public

The Burleigh County Commission has rejected the idea of putting the issue of the county accepting refugees on the ballot in the June primary.

It would have been a non-binding “straw poll.”

The vote was 3 to 2.

In December, the Commission – on an identical 3 to 2 vote – agreed to accept up to 25 refugees. Burleigh is one of three counties that will accept refugees – the others are Cass and Grand Forks.

Dickinson State University

When Stephen Easton was hired as the interim President of Dickinson State University, he knew he was facing a significant budget issue.

Easton said he has to cut $2.35 million per year in order to reach a balanced budget. He said there have already been some voluntary retirements and early departures, under some incentives. And he said there have been some reductions in non-personnel expenses. But Easton said those efforts have not been sufficient.

Easton is planning to send a campus-wide e-mail Jan. 16th, at 2 pm (MT), which will outline his proposed plan.

Six wind farms have missed a December 31st deadline to install new “Aircraft Detection Lighting Systems” on their turbine towers, as required by state law..

Those wind farms were permitted after June of 2016. That new system replaces the blinking red lights or strobes on wind towers, and only light up when an aircraft is in the area, detected by radar.

"We all know that this technology has been talked about for a long time," Fedorchak said. "It's been promised to the people living near the wind farms."

Governor Burgum will have three spots to fill on the Board of Higher Education.

One appointment will come up very soon.

Board member Dan Traynor has submitted his resignation, effective tomorrow (Jan. 3rd). Traynor recently was approved to serve as a federal District Judge for the state of North Dakota. In a letter to Burgum, Traynor said continued service on the Board of Higher Education would violate the Code of Conduct for United States Judges.