north dakota legislature

Senate approves measure to limit Burgum’s declarations

BISMARCK, N.D. – The North Dakota Senate has endorsed legislation that would limit emergency or disaster declarations by a governor and allow the Legislature more oversight of executive branch action. The bill was passed along party lines on Thursday. All seven Democrats in the Senate opposed the measure.  It now heads to the House. The legislation was inspired by a rash…

Bill that would have dropped seat belt requirement rejected

BISMARCK, N.D. (KVRR/KCND) – The North Dakota House has rejected a bill that would have dropped the requirement for seat belt use among people 18 and older. Supporters say the bill was introduced in response to a Senate bill that would make the state’s seat belt law a “primary” offense. Th current law makes it a “secondary” offense, meaning drivers…

Bill requires North Dakota’s health officer to be a physician

BISMARCK, N.D. – The North Dakota Legislature is considering a measure that requires the state health officer to be a practicing licensed physician. The Republican-backed bill comes after three health officers chosen by Gov. Doug Burgum quit during a time the coronavirus pandemic was worsening. Dirk Wilke, who has no medical training, has been the interim state health officer since…

North Dakota bill wipes records clean for drunken drivers

BISMARCK, N.D. – The North Dakota House has endorsed a bill requiring the state’s courts to seal drunken driving records if the offender stays out of trouble for at least seven years. Representatives voted 89-3 on Monday to approve the bill that backers said was aimed at giving convicted drunken drivers who stay out of trouble better odds of getting…

Bill would include spoons, stericups in needle exchange program

(DEA photo)BISMARCK, N.D. (KVRR/KCND) – The North Dakota House has passed a bill which would add spoons, stericups and cotton syringe filters to the needle exchange program. The vote in the Human Services Committee was 7 to 6 for a “do pass.” Fargo Democratic Representative Gretchen Dobervich supports the measure.  She says it would provide sterilized supplies that prevent the…

Bill requiring North Dakota clergy to report child abuse withdrawn

BISMARCK, N.D. – A bipartisan North Dakota bill that would have required clergy to be included in state law as mandatory reporters of child abuse has been withdrawn. West Fargo Republican Sen. Judy Lee withdrew the legislation on Friday, saying the bill has become a distraction. The Roman Catholic dioceses in Fargo and Bismarck had opposed the bill.  Private discussions between…

GOP bonding proposal provides $435 million for FM Diversion

FM Diversion BISMARCK, N.D. (KVRR/KCND) – The FM Diversion Project would receive $435.5 million from a Republican-sponsored bonding bill in the North Dakota legislature. “I know it’ll take a few years to get that done, but if we get that off the table, then we can start looking bigger” House Majority Leader Chet Pollert said. The $800 million bill also…

GOP move to kill emergency order would cut food stamp funds

BISMARCK, N.D. – A plan by some members of the North Dakota Legislature to terminate a pandemic-related emergency declaration could discontinue food assistance to the state’s neediest residents. North Dakota and other states that have emergency orders in place have been getting additional money for food stamps under a package passed by Congress. If lawmakers end the emergency declaration, North…

Lawmakers defeat bill allowing patients to grow medical marijuana

BISMARCK, N.D. (KVRR/KCND) – The North Dakota Senate has defeated a measure that would allow medical marijuana patients to grow their own plants. Edinburg Republican Sen. Janna Myrdal said the Senate Judiciary Committee gave the measure a unanimous “do not pass” recommendation, after law enforcement raised concerns. The bill’s main sponsor, Minot Sen. Ole Larsen, told the Senate that he…

State senate to consider bills allowing purchase of wholesale meds from Canada

BISMARCK, N.D. (KVRR/KCND) – The North Dakota Senate Human Services Committee will hold hearings on three bills designed to help lower prescription costs. Two of the bills would allow North Dakota to buy medications wholesale from Canada. A third bill would use price data from the four most populous Canadian provinces to compare with U.S. drug prices, and set the…