North Dakota lawmakers toss bills to boost campaign finance transparency; two others still in the process

Do you want to know who’s funneling money into what North Dakota issues and campaigns? The North Dakota legislature has a long tradition of saying you don’t need that information, but money targeting Republicans in the last election cycle has made for some unlikely political allies. The vote tally is getting closer, but two bills

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Will 2024 Governorship Race Deliver Red, Blue, or Black & White?

Is it too early to speculate about next year’s North Dakota gubernatorial race? If Governor Burgum doesn’t run again, what can we expect and who will try to succeed him? We should feel safe to assume that if the Democrats field a candidate, he or she will more than likely have several disadvantages. Let’s start

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Measure would tighten process for ballot initiatives to amend North Dakota constitution

North Dakota’s Constitution can be changed by a vote of the people; a vote of the people to change the constitution can be brought by the legislature or by petition from the people. Concurrent Resolution 4013 would change the terms under which those petitions can be brought and are conducted. Jack Dura with the Bismarck

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North Dakota Local Elections Are No Place For Local Control

When it comes to electing City officials, Fargo has broken ranks with the rest of us. They no longer select the one candidate they want elected, they select all the candidates they approve of getting elected. Whoever gets the most approvals gets elected. It’s an adaptation Fargo turned to given the high number of candidates

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Should School Board Candidates Be Required To File Campaign Finance Reports? Proposed Legislation Says Yes

Currently, candidates for local school board officers are not required to file campaign finance reports the same as other local office candidates. But two bills proposed in the current legislative session would change that. The bills propose to exempt school board candidates in districts with less than 750 students, but for all others, campaign finance

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Shifting gears: why US cities are falling out of love with the parking lot

California, as a state, is set to ban parking minimums. Other cities in other states are following suit. It comes down to the fact that decades of forcing land into parking was a bad decision, it’s costing us lots of money, and we’re just waking up to the consequences. Get the full story at The

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REPUBLISHED: Election Night Fireworks, An Apology, and a Tip of Hat to the Keepers of Democracy

Given the enormous distrust that has developed in our elections over the past several years, this article from The Minot Voice archives seemed worth revisiting. And once again, my experience voting in this year’s election mirrors my past experiences. For those of you working our elections today and throughout the early voting process, you have

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To judge or not to judge, that is your question

It is too early to speculate on the outcome of the Presidential race in 2020. If Trump does not get re-elected, however, there will be a chapter in American history and law for which there is no precedent. Michael Cohen, who was Trump’s personal lawyer, has pleaded guilty and been sentenced to prison for a

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Bismarck City Commission approves off-highway vehicle ordinance

Under a strict set of requirements like minimum speed, roll cage, turn signals, and others, certain off-highway vehicles will be allowed on Bismarck streets. Owen Piehl with the Bismarck Tribune has the full story.

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Mpls. landlords fight bid to limit vetos of tenants

In Minneapolis, one City Council member proposed limiting landlords from rejecting potential tenants based on credit, past evictions, and criminal histories. The intent behind the policy — ensuring those with a checkered past have a chance to clean their slate. Landlords, property management companies and developers are pushing back with arguments that the policy will

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How Durango created more affordable housing by relaxing laws on garden apartments

Would you consider adding a tiny home in your backyard or a small apartment above a detached garage? While many would say yes, there’s a good chance that your city’s zoning law prohibits or restricts your ability to do so. In Durango, Colorado, they relaxed the laws and saw an increase in affordable housing. In

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Ward County Planning Commission to take another stab at right-of-way dedication

Among the most contentious issues before Ward County leadership in past years is the ongoing policy that requires a land dedication as a part of platting land. A few years back, the County Commission failed to advance a proposed change that would have requirement. Since then, the County’s Planning Commission has seen a steady stream

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Minneapolis eases liquor license restrictions, restaurants flock to opportunity offering craft cocktail experiences

When it comes to liquor, the City of Minneapolis chose to take a step back and do a little deregulating. As a step of confirmation, they offered the idea to the citizens through a city charter change; the public supported it overwhelmingly (72% yes). And now, in the first season that restaurants were offered the

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This is what happens when you cap property taxes; it’s not good

Property taxes — we all hate them. Naturally, as a result of our disdain, we seek to remove that which we don’t like. This attitude is prevalent in North Dakota. In the past, we’ve voted down initiated measures that sought to eliminate property tax; in the recently closed legislative session, the House killed a bill

Read & Share   sourced from: Los Angeles Times

Africa is leading the world in plastic bag reform

Whether through bans, taxes, or simple acknowledgment of the problem — people and countries across the globe are waking up to the scourge of plastic invading our natural environments. And in countries throughout Africa, they’re taking aggressive steps to reduce usage and impacts — particularly of plastic bags. It’s a local story because the impacts

Read & Share   sourced from: Quartz

Social Security for me but not for thee

In sixteen years, benefits paid out by the Social Security Administration will exceed generated surpluses. The options of the federal government at that time will be to reduce payments to the retired and/or disabled, increase payroll taxes on employers, employees or both, raise the cap on taxable wages, increase the age of retirement, or all

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