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Bakken Briefings

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Changing Ray The city of Ray could look very different in five years. City Planner Brent Moore has been working with Ray’s Planning Commission over the past six months to develop a comprehensive plan, with the highway corridor and Main Street targeted as growth areas. Moore said comprehensive plans focus on a design for growth rather than how any specific ...

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Watford City, Stanley plan hospital upgrades

hospital

WATFORD CITY, N.D. — Hospitals are planning multimillion-dollar upgrades in two growing cities in western North Dakota’s oil patch. McKenzie County Healthcare Systems plans to replace its hospital in Watford City with a $58 million facility. The Mountrail County Health Center in Stanley is upgrading its hospital emergency room and nursing home and expanding its clinic in a $6.3 million ...

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Bakken Briefings

oil rig

Plant explosion raises questions A huge explosion and fireball at a compressor station south of Tioga this month has raised questions about whether there is any state oversight of such facilities. The explosion at a Hiland Partners station, which rattled windows as far as 30 miles away, appears to be an accident with no gross violations found, said Kris Roberts, ...

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USDA Rural Development investing in the Bakken

usda

By Jessica Holdman Housing, health care and the Bakken were the focus of U.S. Department of Agriculture Rural Development in 2013. State Director Jasper Schneider said in many states growth happens in the major metropolitan areas. “It’s the opposite in North Dakota, with a lot of development happening in rural areas,” he said. Rural Development invested a total of $506 million ...

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4 companies fined for violating ND one-call law

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BISMARCK, N.D. (AP) – The North Dakota Public Service Commission says it recently fined four companies for damages to gas lines and an electric cable that occurred during excavation projects in Mandan and Minot. Officials say the $1,000 and $2,000 fines highlight the importance of the state’s “Call Before You Dig” law. State law requires excavators to contact a state ...

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Bakken Briefings

ambulance

Watford hospital plans aired The financial pieces for a new $57.3 million health care facility in Watford City, N.D., are rapidly falling into place. Dan Kelly, CEO of McKenzie County Healthcare Systems, said the North Dakota Industrial Commission has approved a Bank of North Dakota $12.5 million loan for a new 24-bed hospital, clinic and nursing home. “This 1 percent, ...

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Amtrak disruptions in ND to continue until March; heavy freight traffic ties up rail lines

Amtrak

By: Kevin Bonham, Forum News Service, INFORUM GRAND FORKS – Westbound Amtrak train service will continue to bypass Grand Forks and Devils Lake through North Dakota until at least Feb. 28. That means passengers with stops in Grand Forks, Devils Lake and Rugby will be bused to and from Fargo or Minot, just as Amtrak has been doing for nearly three ...

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Bakken Briefings

oil rigs

New Town motels coming Two hotels that will provide nearly 200 new guest rooms in New Town, N.D., were described to City Council members last month. Brett Erdmann reported on the progress of the two hotels his firm, New Leaf Development, is building just east of the Alco store. Erdmann said the Little Missouri Inn is on track to be ...

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As Oil Floods Plains Towns, Crime Pours In

Crime in the Bakken

Matthew Staver for The New York Times Sgt. Daniel Blood making an arrest last month in Watford City, N.D. Since 2005, arrests there have risen more than fivefold. SIDNEY, Mont. — One cold morning last year, a math teacher jogging through her hometown in eastern Montana was abducted, strangled and buried in a shallow grave. Charged in her death were ...

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