Murphy’s Law #16

March 10, 2017

Monday saw two different discussions on water. One a noon meeting with a Bismarck geologist about nutrient management and how to get Agriculture involved. The other was a late afternoon meeting with a legislator about his vision to reform how ND manages its water. Whether a specific bill or getting the big picture from various players, water is always a big issue and our growers are better off knowing what might be brewing.
Discussions continue on what might be the best direction for HB1282, the so-called commodities bill. It is up for hearing Thursday in Senate Ag and with other commodity groups showing up this week for NDSU Extension and Research budget hearings, HB1282 is certainly being talked about in these hallways. Both the Council and Growers have members coming to provide information.
Higher Education budgets have been before House Appropriations this week and if you are a grower near VCSU or Mayville State or such, you know what kind of positive impact these small colleges can exercise. Universities are engines of innovation as well as playing a part in retaining our young people in North Dakota. How much damage can these institutions take and still recover down the road to current or better levels? This is a tough session for a lot of North Dakotans. Our Growers representative gave an impassioned plea late Tuesday in House Appropriations to properly fund NDSU Extension and Research to the level requested by SBARE as it is so important for our Ag producers.
HB1390, the tiling bill that asks for Water Resource Districts to educate their board members, is up on Friday morning in Senate Ag.
There is a chance for a bill that would provide Liquid Natural Gas (LNG) to communities of 2,500 or fewer people if they opt out of regulation by the PSC. It passed the House with propane suppliers against it. HB1398 is being heard in Senate Natural Resources on Thursday at 10.