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Local North Dakota News
Friday, January 19th 2018
Associated Press North Dakota News
Latest North Dakota news, sports, business and entertainment at 6:20 a.m. CST
POLICE SHOOTING-BISMARCK
Police: Man who clashed with North Dakota officer arrested
BISMARCK, N.D. (AP) — A man accused of trying to hit a police officer with his vehicle in North Dakota has been arrested.
Bismarck police say 22-year-old Ulises Villalobos was taken into custody Thursday in Brookings, South Dakota, without incident. Police had said that the officer shot at the suspect during the incident earlier Thursday and that he likely was struck by a bullet.
Police didn't provide details of Villalobos' condition Thursday night. The officer wasn't injured.
The shooting prompted several Bismarck schools to issue shelter-in-place orders for students.
Police Sgt. Mark Buschena said police were assisting parole or probation agents checking on a person when Villalobos fled in a vehicle and tried to hit the officer. It's unclear if Villalobos is the person agents were checking on.
RED RIVER DIVERSION
Red River diversion report leaves dam location in question
BISMARCK, N.D. (AP) — A task force assembled by the governors of North Dakota and Minnesota has released its final recommendations for re-starting a stalled Red River diversion project meant to protect Fargo and Moorhead, Minnesota, from a frequent spring flood threat.
But the recommendations released Thursday by the 16-member panel don't include a location for a dam that would hold back water in times of serious flooding.
Fargo Mayor Tim Mahoney says he expects engineers from the state of Minnesota and from the two cities to identify a location within a month.
North Dakota Gov. Doug Burgum and Minnesota Gov. Mark Dayton assembled the task force last year following a federal judge's decision to shut down the $2.2 billion, 30-mile diversion project until it gets the necessary permits from Minnesota.
TAX OVERHAUL-FARMERS
Tax law gives unexpected break to farmers who sell to co-ops
MINNEAPOLIS (AP) — Key senators and farm groups are trying to fix a provision in the federal tax overhaul that gave an unexpected tax break to farmers who sell their crops to cooperatives instead of other buyers.
The provision from Republican Sens. John Thune of South Dakota and John Hoeven of North Dakota surfaced in the final days of the debate over the tax bill. Companies that aren't co-ops include local grain companies as well as agribusiness giants such as Cargill and ADM.
The senators say they didn't intend to give co-ops and their farmer-members a competitive advantage over other companies. They say they just wanted to make sure farmers' taxes didn't rise.
But observers say it's not clear if a fix can pass, given the partisan divide on Capitol Hill.
DOUBLE FATAL-NORTH DAKOTA
2 women killed in car-SUV crash in northeast North Dakota
THOMPSON, N.D. (AP) — Two women including a 97-year-old are dead after a head-on collision on a highway in northeastern North Dakota.
The North Dakota Highway Patrol says the women were passengers in a sport utility vehicle that collided with a Nissan Altima on Highway 15 near Thompson on Thursday morning.
Authorities say the westbound Nissan was negotiating a curve in the frost-covered road when it crossed the center line and collided with the eastbound SUV.
The patrol says the 97-year-old woman died at the scene. A 59-year-old woman was pronounced dead at Altru Hospital in Grand Forks. Their names were not immediately released.
The drivers were taken to the hospital with non-life-threatening injuries.
SPECIALTY CROP GRANTS
North Dakota accepting specialty crop grant applications
BISMARCK, N.D. (AP) — North Dakota's Agriculture Department is accepting applications for grants to help promote specialty crops.
The state last year got about $2.2 million from the federal government for the grants. This year's allocation won't be known until next month.
The federal government defines specialty crops as fruits and vegetables, tree nuts, dried fruits, and horticulture and nursery crops.
Specialty crops grown commercially in North Dakota include dry beans and peas, lentils, potatoes, confection sunflowers, grapes, honey and various vegetables.
Agriculture Commissioner Doug Goehring says the deadline to apply for a grant is 4 p.m. Central time on March 15. The grants will be awarded later this year. Grant-funded projects must be completed by October 2020.
FATAL CRASH-FARGO
Fargo police identify man killed in 2-vehicle crash
FARGO, N.D. (AP) — Fargo police have released the name of a North Dakota man killed in a head-on crash in north Fargo.
Authorities identify the victim as 22-year-old Zachary Ronald Kaufman of Casselton.
Kaufman was driving a car that collided with a pickup truck north of the Hector International Airport about 7 a.m. Wednesday. He died at the scene.
KFGO reports the pickup driver was transported to a hospital with undisclosed injuries.
Police are still investigating.
Thursday, January 18th 2018
Associated Press North Dakota News
Latest North Dakota news, sports, business and entertainment at 6:20 a.m. CST
VOTER IDENTIFICATION-LAWSUIT
North Dakota wants judge to lift order allowing affidavits
BISMARCK, N.D. (AP) — North Dakota officials are asking a federal judge to lift his order that requires the state to allow voters without identification to cast a ballot by filing an affidavit.
In court documents filed Tuesday, the state argues the affidavits could lead to "thousands of unverifiable votes."
U.S. District Judge Daniel Hovland issued the order in 2016 and blocked the state's voter identification law after it was challenged by a group of Native Americans. They allege the ID requirements violate the U.S. Voting Rights Act.
Before 2013, a voter could sign an affidavit attesting to their eligibility to vote but the Legislature removed that provision.
The new law would allow those who don't have proper ID to cast a ballot that is set aside until the voter's eligibility is confirmed.
NORTH DAKOTA TOURISM
North Dakota tabs Duhamel as tourism pitchman through 2019
BISMARCK, N.D. (AP) — North Dakota's tourism agency will once again enlist the help of actor and Minot native Josh Duhamel to help lure visitors to the state.
North Dakota's tourism agency on Wednesday unveiled its $2.9 million marketing plan for 2018. The agency also announced that Duhamel will be paid $365,000 to be the face of the tourism campaign for the next two years.
Duhamel, who's best known for starring in the "Transformers" movies, already has earned $525,000 since 2013 for his work with the tourism agency.
State Tourism Division Director Sara Otte Coleman says Duhamel has been a good ambassador, and that his television and other advertising have boosted visits to North Dakota.
The marketing campaign features new TV and print ads, as well as new travel and hunting guides that feature Duhamel.
OBIT-ANDRIST
Longtime newspaperman, former state Sen. John Andrist dies
CROSBY, N.D. (AP) — Longtime newspaperman and former state Sen. John Andrist has died.
Steve Andrist says his father died Wednesday morning in Fargo from complications of a stroke he suffered earlier. He was 86.
The Republican from Crosby was first elected to the Senate in 1992, serving District 2 in the northwestern corner of the state. He resigned his seat in 2014 due to declining health.
He had been known for being an advocate of rural North Dakota and a leader in helping to solve problems created by the rapid growth of the state's oil and gas industry.
Andrist was a retired publisher and past-president of both the North Dakota Newspaper Association and the National Newspaper Association.
He wrote newspaper columns for more than 60 years for the Crosby Journal.
BISMARCK POLICE CHIEF
Bismarck police chief announced retirement
BISMARCK, N.D. (AP) — Bismarck's police chief says he will step down later this year.
Chief Dan Donlin on Wednesday announced his intent to retire this summer or early fall after 30 years with the police department, including five years as chief.
Donlin ruled out a run to replace Burleigh County Sheriff Pat Heinert who has decided not to seek re-election after three terms. Donlin says he'll retire sometime between June and September. The chief oversees 158 employees, including 128 sworn officers.
OIL PIPELINE PROTEST-SHOOTING
Pipeline protester accused in shooting reaches plea deal
BISMARCK, N.D. (AP) — Attorneys for a Denver woman accused of shooting at law enforcement officers during protests in North Dakota against the Dakota Access oil pipeline say they've reached a deal with prosecutors to avoid a lengthy prison term.
If a judge agrees, Red Fawn Fallis would plead guilty Monday to civil disorder and gun possession by a convicted felon.
Prosecutors would drop a more serious weapons charge that carries a minimum sentence of 10 years in prison and the possibility of life. Prosecutors also would recommend no more than seven years.
Fallis was to stand trial Jan. 29. She is accused of firing a handgun three times at officers during her October 2016 arrest. No one was hurt.
She has a 2003 conviction in Colorado for being an accessory to a felony.
MISTAKEN ALERT-FALLOUT SHELTERS
Heed the shelter signs? If nuke is REALLY coming, maybe not
NEW YORK (AP) — In the event of a nuclear strike, racing to take cover in a building bearing a rusted yellow fallout-shelter symbol may not be the best option.
The shelters are Cold War-era relics and haven't been maintained. And conventional wisdom has changed on what to do if the big one hits.
Scientists say you could survive an attack if you ride it out in a place with thick brick or concrete walls and no windows. And don't go outside.
Over the weekend, Hawaii mistakenly sent a cellphone alert on the threat of an incoming ballistic missile and didn't retract it for 38 minutes. The state set up the missile warning infrastructure after North Korea demonstrated its ballistic missiles had the range to reach the islands.
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