December 9, 2022
Murphy’s Law 2023 | #1
Legislative Ag Committees Chosen
Your legislators know what committees they are on as of yesterday. Senate Agriculture has a wrinkle in that Veterans Affairs committee was blended into it. Same Chairman in is Senator Luick, with member Senators Myrdal, Lemm, Weber, Weston and Hogan filling it out. Moving the Veterans Affairs committee made room for a brand-new committee called Workforce, although the...
November 8, 2022
Murphy’s Law Blog 2022 | #14
Lateral Effects on Drainage
Okay, this is a continuation of reporting from the Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) meeting that I spoke of in Murphy’s Law Blog 2022 – #13 NRCS Meeting. It just got too long for a blog. Anyway, I understand that when producers are dealing with wetlands that there are times when they will call NRCS or some authority asking where/what they can/cannot do....
November 7, 2022
Murphy’s Law Blog 2022 | #13
The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) has a division many of you are familiar with known as the Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS). Their Technical Committee met for the first-time face to face this past week since the pandemic began in 2020. The head of the NRCS in North Dakota is Mary Podoll. Mary has held that position for the last 11 years...
September 29, 2022
Murphy’s Law 2022 | #12
This month we saw the final meeting of the Interim Taxation Committee of our state legislature. They are expertly led by Senator Dale Patten of Williston, a former banker and county commissioner. At issue are breaks or reformulations of our state income tax and property tax, but probably not both. The Governor has joined a proposal for a 1.5% flat income...
September 8, 2022
Murphy’s Law Blog 2022 | #11
Last Ag and Natural Resources Meeting
The last Ag and Natural Resources Committee meeting lasted about 90 minutes in Fargo and was kicked off by the new president of NDSU, Dr. David Cook. He discussed his past experience in higher education in both Iowa and Kansas and gave an update on how he has hit the ground running by going around the state visiting each of the eight NDSU Research stations. I was...
July 23, 2022
Murphy’s Law Blog 2022 | #10
Ag Coalition Meeting
A two-fold mission was played out this week in BisMan. One, was to attend portions of the International Legislators Forum (ILF) followed and capped by the Ag Coalition meeting. The ILF is made up of legislators from North Dakota, South Dakota, Minnesota, and Manitoba. It was founded more than twenty years ago with the intent of working on mutual water issues, especially...
July 14, 2022
Murphy’s Law Blog 2022 | #9
North Dakota Joint Summer Water Meeting
The North Dakota Joint Summer Water Meeting is considered a joint meeting because during parts of the three days they meet, Garrison Diversion and Water Resource Districts hang out and do business, sometimes independently, at other times together. This week it was at the Holiday Inn of Fargo, and I will report briefly on my jumping around to cover both organizations:...
July 13, 2022
Murphy’s Law Blog 2022 | #8
Upper Red River Basin Hearing
Each of North Dakota’s State Water Commissioners is hosting their basin meetings this July to hear what occupants have to offer for discussion. The hot topic has been changing the magnitudes of state cost share. Rural water advocates were lined up to speak to Commissioner April Walker but was not in attendance. Subbed in was Director of the Department of Water Resources...
June 27, 2022
Murphy’s Law Blog 2022 | #7
Golf and Water Topics
Golf first; we are about a month away from the 9th Annual Jamestown NDSGA Open. It will open for registration and lunch on Tuesday, July 26 at 11 with shotgun at noon. Social, supper and prizes after! Please grab some folks for fun and let Nancy know at 701-640-5215. See you there!Water Topics met and got some updates from various cities and projects. One topic of...
May 6, 2022
Murphy’s Law Blog 2022 | #6
On Wednesday, there was a meeting with about 30 folks at Spiritwood concerning road conditions and needs once the ADM soybean crush plant is in operation. Attendees included North Dakota Soybean Growers Association members (with Executive Director Nancy Johnson chairing the meeting), North Dakota Soybean Council directors and North Dakota Corn Grower members. There were...
April 12, 2022
Murphy’s Law Blog 2022 | #5
Water Drainage and Township Money
Last weekend while out in western North Dakota, the newborn calves were scampering around while some were seeing their first day in relatively decent weather. Hopefully those ranchers were able to offer some shelter from the whiteout conditions that is now going on while I type now that I’m back in the eastern side of the state. Like soybean farmers seeing the fields...
April 7, 2022
Murphy’s Law Blog 2022 | #4 Tax Committee, Other Issues
On April 6, North Dakota Soybean Growers Association (NDSGA) Executive Director and newly named American Soybean Association (ASA) Leadership Award winner Nancy Johnson showed why she deserves both titles when addressing the interim North Dakota Tax Committee. When this committee last met, I had testified in favor of keeping the soybean crush tax incentive and the...
March 24, 2022
Murphy’s Law Blog 2022 | #3
Waters for Fightin’
On March 22, 2022, attorney Jack Dwyer, the Executive Secretary of the Water Resource Districts Association, testified in front of the Water Topics Interim committee concerning bill number 2208 from last session. This bill failed and became a study for the interim. Mr. Dwyer titled his presentation, “SB 2208 and the Formation of the Water Drainage Committee – A Result of...
February 16, 2022
Murphy’s Law Blog 2022 | #2
Ag and Natural Resources
This committee had met for the first time in October and now for the second time this Tuesday. They have completed most of what they were assigned to do, receiving reports from the Advisory committee on Sustainable Agriculture. Because year after year nothing is done with this topic, they are submitting a draft bill to do away with the annual reporting. The issue is that...
February 10, 2022
Murphy’s Law Blog 2022 | #1
Water Drainage Interim Committee Meets
Hey, Happy New Year! The committee came together to discuss blending a couple of Century Code (CC) chapters that contain discrepancies. That portion of the task before them seems to be moving along fine and will probably be a stand-alone bill next year.Then they launched into a wide ranging conversation which some thought went way “into the weeds,” to quote...
December 11, 2021
Murphy’s Law Blog 2021 | #58
The program started out with an explanation of the water permitting process from Chris Bader from the Department of Water Resources. He apologized up front for saying “State Water Commission,” the agency he has worked for his entire career because, as mentioned in a couple previous blogs, it is now called the Department of Water Resources. Anyway,...
December 9, 2021
Murphy’s Law Blog 2021 | #57
Water Drainage Interim Committee Meets
This committee first met in the summer and this, their second meeting, took half a day. There were only three outside presenters, the first being Senator Cramer who joined via computer. He spoke of WOTUS issues and was happy that EPA folks had come out to visit North Dakota to learn firsthand what is happening. Then the new and first director of the Department of Water...
December 7, 2021
Murphy’s Law Blog 2021 | #56
Water Topics Interim Committee Meets
Today was unique, the Chairman of the Water Topics committee, Rep. Jim Schmidt, had invited all nine of the State Water Commissioners to sit with the 20 legislative committee members for their daylong meeting. While I rarely attend this committee, it made sense to because of so many people present and the agenda’s wide-ranging presentations. Especially, in the light of it...
November 17, 2021
Murphy’s Law Blog 2021 | #53
In my father’s opinion, it was nuts to take out a loan to go on vacation. I agree with that and it was the analogy used yesterday when discussing the water budget and funding with the Legislature’s water guru, Representative Jim Schmidt. He would like to build a reserve fund for water so that projects can use cash. If I understood him correctly, he would use...
November 16, 2021
Murphy’s Law Blog 2021 | #52
Ag/Energy Summit, Special Session
The first Agriculture and Energy summit was held at the Fargo Radisson on Tuesday, November 9 in the afternoon. Hosted by the Commerce Department, it was taking a stab at getting players together looking for synergies seeing as, and I quote the ND Commerce Dept.’s Josh Teigen – “70% of North Dakota’s GDP is related to oil and soil.” Gotta nice ring to it, does it...