Arguments were heard by a judge Wednesday over whether a company developing an oil refinery near Theodore Roosevelt National Park has supplied sufficient information to justify drawing from an underwater aquifer. North Dakota water officials argue the information provided by Meridian Energy group is adequate, while area landowners challenging the recommended permit for the Davis Refinery argue the information is vague and contradictory.
A judge dismissed charges against a Bismarck addiction counselor accused of hindering police in the arrest of a methadone patient. Kiki Schatz was charged with a misdemeanor after she refused to allow police, who were trying to arrest a man for allegedly violating a protection order, to enter a private opioid treatment clinic in June. The judged ruled in favor of Schatz, who argued she was obligated under federal law to protect patients’ confidentiality rights.
A former law officer convicted earlier this month of corruption or solicitation of a minor has requested a new trial. Attorneys for Bryton Dahl accused the teenage boy, who Dahl was convicted of having sexual contact with, of lying under oath, and accused prosecutors of withholding evidence. Dahl was a Williston police officer and a Mckenzie County Sheriff’s deputy, as well as a substitute teacher at Williston Public School. Dahl was convicted early in November of having sexual relations with a 16-year-old boy when he was 22. Dahl’s attorneys argue a lack of evidence presented by the prosecution and inconsistencies in the boy’s testimony justify nullifying the conviction and granting a new trail.
A North Dakota task force has recommended that the state reform its higher education governance structure. The plan recommended by the task force appointed by Gov. Doug Burgum would have separate boards for North Dakota State University, the University of North Dakota and the remaining nine ND institutions. Boards for NDSU and UND would have 12 members; the board for the other schools would have 14 members, while each board would have nine voting members.
Carrington Rep. Chet Pollert was elected the new North Dakota House majority leader. Pollert will succeed longtime Fargo Rep. Al Carlson, after Carlson lost his re-election bid. Pollert was elected Tuesday night over Mike Nathe of Bismarck and Dan Ruby of Minot.