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Target Logistics, Williston Lodge North, North Dakota. Exterior structures at dusk/dawn.

Williston sets deadline for elimination of oil crew camps

WILLISTON, N.D. — Williston’s City Commission has set a July 1 deadline for the elimination of oil field crew camps within city limits, but the issue still might not be resolved.

Commissioners on Tuesday voted 3-2 to approve an ordinance setting the deadline, after debate about its impact on the energy industry. However, Mayor Howard Klug said he will push for an amendment that could allow some temporary housing.

“It will be at the direction of the mayor, because I made a promise to get it done,” he told The Williston Herald after the meeting.

Some people believe crew camps are unsightly and can increase problems including crime. They also say construction of new apartments and hotels in the oil patch hub has caught up with population growth. A recent report from a consultant concluded that if all crew camps in the city and surrounding Williams County were to close, there would still be a surplus of nearly 1,300 apartments and hotel beds in Williston.

Oil company officials say hotel rooms and apartments in Williston are costly, and they still need temporary housing for seasonal workers. Some crew camp operators have filed written protests against the ordinance, Assistant City Attorney Jordon Evert said.

Commissioner Deanette Piesik proposed restricting crew camps to oil companies providing housing for their own employees; requiring them to reduce housing by half, to about 1,000 beds; and extending the elimination deadline to 2019. The idea drew support, but Evert said it would need to first go through the city’s Planning and Zoning Commission.

“I believe we can pass this motion as is, and then start working with the operators that have camps that they are using for their own crews and have a compromise by the second meeting in January,” Klug said. “At that point it gives us the opportunity to bring it back to the Planning and Zoning (Commission) with recommendations from the City Commission.

“The commission would have a chance to go back and rewrite something that would stick around for a lot longer than the date we have,” the mayor said.

In related news, North Dakota ‘man camps’ battle pending ban in oil capital.

This story has been corrected to show that the city prosecutor’s first name is Jordon, not Jordan.

Information from: Williston Herald, http://www.willistonherald.com

This article was from The Associated Press and was legally licensed through the NewsCred publisher network.

52 comments

  1. Before they turn it in to a private prison

  2. What is the big rush, are they going to use the site to build some skyscraper hotels

  3. Their buddies that own those hotels and apartment buildings are losing money….of course a politician is going to start passing laws to help them out

  4. With oil being so volatile in the global market, no employee can garuntee the length of employment in the williston area. No oil and gas worker in their right mind would purchase a home in this area and “put down roots” at this time or in the foreseeable future. This makes no sense, its a kick in the head to those workers that paid for all the new infrastructure in that city.

    • Exactly! Very well stated!!

    • I have to respectfully disagree, the man camp situation is a horrible one for community’s, their are much better options, like apartments to rent and other houses to rent, those contribute more to a community than man camps and still offer a temporary option for those that don’t necessarily want to put down roots, which I will agree is a fair amount of people in the industry

    • Why shouldn’t there be impovements to the town to accommodate the extra population and traffic ? People want to work, make their money and leave. That’s fine, there are those who want to stay and that’s even better :). So why shouldn’t the town benefit from the “explosion” ? Yes there should be apts month to month, but that’s mainly out of town investors out to make a buck same as people who come just to make money and leave. Problem is the out of state investors are out of state and don’t care. No one knew how big this was going to get. The town got burned big time the last boom and was slow to move. Yes maybe to slow, but it is what it is. Adjust and get over it. Be glad there were jobs, hopefully those in camps saved money to live.

    • So, if I read that article right, the deadline was moved to 2019? So what’s the problem? ISIS will probably take over by then anyway.

    • Don’t think they will take over, they may try. 😉

    • Even if they keep moving the deadline, for one, who wants to sit and wait another 3 years for things to pick back up? And that’s if it even picks back up at all, I’ve lived in Sidney all of my life, I’ve watched this place change so much from the childhood home I knew, was there good money here? Will it be back? Not likely

  5. I wonder how many city council people own rental property….

  6. This would be fine if they added a clause to prosecute the crooks that have been gouging people on rent prices. Pass controls on rent price and maybe these man camps wouldn’t be needed.

    • As appealing as that sounds, It’s always a dangerous thing to ask the government (local or otherwise) to stick its nose where it doesn’t belong. Small government and free markets work…you just have to accept the good with the bad…and I’m one of the many people here who are getting bent over with rent.

    • If we are looking at free market they should leave the man camps alone. What I’m saying is if they are going to regulate man-camps they need to regulate rent prices also.

  7. And that’s why people hate politicians, they’re always forcing their views down people’s throats tell us where and how to do.

  8. Nope because the people will leave.. And I think it’s hilarious.. I hope those people go Bankrupt

  9. City council cannot wait to get the kick backs from real estate investors in the city. They must have been promised some cool ( freezer)cash. But far be it for me to accuse the city of Williston to be interested in anything but the welfare of the poor oppressed mancamp dwellers.

  10. I won’t spend a dime in Williston.

  11. I worked in North Dakota and made a lot of money there, but never ever would I live there full time….the rates they were charging for rent???? Who in their right mind wants to pay 2 grand a month for a small apartment, especially in a place that can get as cold as -57 F???? With oil prices where they are and companies in Williston having already laid off tens of thousands of workers, people working in williston should be “forced to rent houses and apartments”?? Sounds to me like the powers that be are getting nice kickbacks or have personal special interests in the local real estate market

  12. Nine more rigs just went off line !

  13. They are pretty much empty anyways

  14. With the oil industry at a low, and with no end in sight, why would these idiots do this? They obviously have no idea about how real people survive and work in a city like Williston. Sounds like alot of corruption and greed from city leaders to me. Why would anyone want to live in a shit hole like Williston if there’s no work?

  15. We will go back to living like we did before. It’s good when the oil is here, but we will survive like we did. We were comfortable then as we are now. 🙂

  16. Figure out if there is funding available to house the homeless in the areas that the man camps sit vacant?? Not sure if it can be done but worth a suggestion.

  17. We were oil…moved to Williston cause no point in being apart and paying for 2 households. We like williston and are permanent. He isn’t in oil and I work full time as well…our bills are pd with a lil extra. Love our new ND life

  18. Still way to much and deadly hello

  19. Haha time to go home no more hazard pay for you everyday life for us hazard pay lmao

  20. BUSTED, SAME AS BARNETT SHALE, HOPE EVERY ONE GOT RICH!!. THE OLE RANCHER AND FARMER PREVAILS, HA HA HA. SAME AS TEXAS!!!

  21. I’ve always wondered what being homeless was like. Guess I’ll find out

  22. Maybe if rent wasn’t the highest in the fucking there wouldn’t be so many of these.

  23. Well ain’t like any of us wanted to be there and was like north Dakota is so awesome I want to live here forever. So that attitude of telling us good go home ain’t no skin off my nose to leave your inflated ass town. Make no mistake about it i loved the money but taking it in the ass on a daily for a can of soup was bullshit. So yea good go home, and you’re welcome for the tax dollars I paid youre state and you’re welcome for helping build your economy.

  24. So they can move the Syrian refugees in?

  25. That’s fine I’ll just stay in the Killdeer camp.

  26. Money grabbing IDIOTS !!!!!!!

  27. This is another example of the short sightless of the commission. Their job isn’t to protect the greed of the realitors, apartment owners or hotels. It’s for the good of the community, let the crew camps stay it’s called free enterprise, if the owners want people in their homes, apartments, and hotels get competitive and welcome the workers

  28. There are too many empty hotels and apartments, with these sitting vacant the city will slowly become a ghost town and there will be dozens of abandoned buildings through the city. I see why they want to do this, but at the expense of the men (and women!) who work so hard to make a life here is going to be extremely difficult. Employers will have to give housing allowances/company housing again to keep employees. I don’t know many who can still afford 2,000+ for a place to sleep…

    • Have you looked at apartment prices recently? 2 bedrooms for 1200-1300, and soon they will be under $1000. 2 people can afford that whether they work in the oilfield or not

  29. This is willistons answer to less revenue. I’ve been a rotational worker up here for years. There are so few workers now compared to 1 or 2 years ago, there is less people to spend money, and even then those that are here can’t afford to spend money because wages have been cut.

  30. I sure hope when the boom comes back no oil company has anything to do with Williams county

    • Honestly man, I don’t think it’s coming back, I grew up here in richland county, just like the last boom and the one before, once it crashes, it stays burning :/ it sucks, now because the cost of living is still exceeding an average paycheck out here, I’m gonna have to pick up roots from my home and leave, yea the money was good but it caused a lot of damage to those of us who were born out here :/

  31. Those are all manufactured housing, easily moved to next boom town, or a perfect place to house all the terrorists Obama wants to import from middle east

  32. It’s time for a change ! I’ve been in a apartment for two years so people have had enough time to find something else. I will say rent is way to high and I only see that coming down with the oil being so low too.

  33. The city is just trying to ensure a financial interests in the area remain long term oriented so a vibrant community can be built. They are balancing between supporting the industry and supporting the community. It’s a tough job and I give them a lot of credit. The mancamps are not all rosey and many of them should go. It’s bad for the community.