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KHRT ND News - Wednesday - 03/13/19 - Noon Edition

The possible misapplication of millions of dollars in North Dakota oil money may have affected a third fund...

     BISMARCK, N.D. (AP) - The possible misapplication of millions of dollars in North Dakota oil money may have affected a third fund. Lawmakers have been dealing with the revelation that about $137 million in state revenue from the oil-rich Fort Berthold reservation did not go to a pair of school funds as it should have. Today, state engineer Garland Erbele testified that a fund that benefits water projects was shorted, too, by about $125 million.
     Republican leaders have argued the money was correctly distributed before. But they have introduced legislation to begin steering some oil tax money into the school funds. Education and water groups told lawmakers the money should be repaid retroactively. A spokesman for GOP Gov. Doug Burgum says the governor agrees the money should be reimbursed.  

     BISMARCK, N.D. (AP) - A federal report shows the number of drug overdose deaths in North Dakota has dropped slightly after reporting a record number in 2016. The Bismarck Tribune reports the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention released a report that shows overdose deaths in North Dakota declined from 77 in 2016 to 68 in 2017.
     North Dakota Department of Human Services officials say the decrease is a sign of the state's successful drug overdose prevention efforts. The state introduced the Recovery Reinvented Program in 2017 and then began distributing naloxone to communities. Naloxone is a medication used to counter the effects of opioid overdose.
     The Senate passed a measure last month that includes funding $4.5 million to expand the program. It's now under review in the House.

     BISMARCK, N.D. (AP) - The group behind a constitutional amendment to toughen ethics rules in state government is offering several amendments to a Republican bill they say is too soft on the issue.
     North Dakotans for Public Integrity is hoping to make the bill more like a Democratic proposal it says is more in line with what voters wanted when they approved the amendment in 2018. That amendment would restrict lobbying and create an independent ethics commission, among other things.
     The GOP-sponsored bill has passed the House and was being heard in the Senate on Tuesday. Meanwhile, the Democratic version was in the House after already passing the Senate.

     DENVER (AP) - About 1,000 flights into Denver have been canceled as a winter storm hits the western U.S., with blizzard conditions expected to engulf parts of Colorado, Wyoming, Montana, Nebraska, North and South Dakota.

    School was canceled today in many places where up to more than a foot of snow and winds as high as 80 mph were possible. State and local government workers in Denver and Wyoming were told to stay home and many colleges also closed for the day. Parts of Interstates 80 and 25 were closed in Wyoming because of heavy snow and whiteout conditions.

    Heavy snow was falling in northern Arizona and forecasters say dangerous winds in New Mexico are expected to make travel hazardous across much of the state.

    Many flights at the Sioux Falls Regional Airport have been canceled because of low visibility.


     MILWAUKEE (AP) - Rain and melting snow have triggered flood warnings in some Upper Midwestern states while blizzard conditions are the primary concern in other states. Many rivers around Wisconsin are expected to reach flood stage over the next few days as thunderstorms and showers melt away the snow. The National Weather Service posted a flood warning in the Eau Claire area and into southeastern Minnesota. A flood watch was issued for portions of east central, south central and southeast Wisconsin Wednesday through Friday.

    A strong storm packing wind gusts of 60 mph and a foot of snow is moving into South Dakota where a blizzard warning was posted. Rapid City schools and government offices are among those closed today. A similar warning for northeast North Dakota and northwest and west central Minnesota was in effect Thursday through Friday.


   (Copyright 2019 by The Associated Press.  All Rights Reserved.)


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