Tag Archives: legislature

Fargo Choosing to Double Traffic Fines Just Opened a Legal Can of Worms

UPDATE: Since writing this post I’ve learned that other communities, such as Grand Forks, have also taken advantage of the Legislature’s green light to raise traffic fines. I had missed those local changes, though obviously, those changes are as unconstitutional as Fargo’s per the arguments below. Over the weekend, the Fargo Forum’s editorial board applauded the

If North Dakota’s Universities Are in a “Death Spiral” It’s Not From Lack of Public Funding

There is a popular myth in North Dakota, one particularly acute among those work in our state’s public university system, which holds that the universities are being choked to death by stingy state policymakers. Back in September, Sheila Liming, an Assistant Professor in the English Department at the University of North Dakota, wrote an article

Print Column: North Dakota’s New Ethics Regulations May Make Politics Less Transparent

MINOT, N.D. — Recently, a couple of dozen North Dakota lawmakers took a trip to Nashville which cost taxpayers nearly $90,000. The occasion was a summit put on by the National Conference of State Legislatures, an organization our state legislature belongs to (annual dues were $129,770 this year). The trip itself is not exactly news. These

Legislature Should Consider Using Existing Platforms for Video of Committee Meetings

Several years ago the North Dakota Legislature implemented a video system for floor sessions in the House and Senate chambers. I should pause here to note that, with this blog celebrating its 16th birthday yesterday, I’ve been around long enough to remember when we only had an audio stream of floor sessions. Through RealPlayer which,

North Dakota’s Legislature Doesn’t Set Family Leave Policy for Private Businesses and That’s a Good Thing

Recently Bismarck Tribune reporter Jack Dura had a very good report about the amount of pay approved for lawmakers who miss days during the legislative session. As I wrote previously, the amount paid really wasn’t very much, and most of the leave was for perfectly reasonable things like illness and, in one instance, a pregnancy. It’s

Organizer of Referendum Petition Campaigns Says They Don’t Have Enough Signatures Yet

A citizen-led organization calling themselves Audit the Swamp has begun gathering signatures to refer three pieces of legislation, passed by the Legislature earlier this year, to the statewide ballot. They want to block legislation appropriating money to the Theodore Roosevelt Presidential Library project in Medora, excluding lawmaker emails to state agencies from open records requests,

What Good Is Drug Testing if Defendants Can’t Afford It?

North Dakota state law requires that defendants in drug cases be tested on a regular basis, as a part of their bond agreements, to ensure they aren’t using. But what happens if they can’t afford it? Someone facing criminal charges probably finds themselves in a precarious employment situation, at best, and drug testing can run

Plain Talk: Can’t the People Be Trusted to Vote on Amendments to the Initiated Measure Process?

Proponents of North Dakota’s initiated measure process argue that the will of the people, as expressed at the ballot box, is the ultimate arbiter of political questions. So why then does a group of initiated measure enthusiasts, led by activist Dustin Gawrylow, want to stop the people from voting on amendments to the initiated measure

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