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 KHRT ND News

KHRT ND NEWS - WEDNESDAY - 06/11/14 - MORNING EDITION

Former Minot City Councilman Chuck Barney will be the city's next mayor....

     MINOT, N.D. (AP) - Former Minot City Councilman Chuck Barney will be the city's next mayor.  Barney drew 1,327 votes in Tuesday's election, or 56 percent. He had no announced opposition, though Minot native Kevin Mehrer mounted a write-in campaign.  There were 1,033 votes cast for write-in candidates.  Current Mayor Curt Zimbelman did not seek a fourth term in office in North Dakota's fourth-largest city.
 
     Barney is director of the Severson Entrepreneurship Academy at Minot State University. He served two terms as president of the City Council and has served on various boards, including president of the city's Convention and Visitor's Bureau, treasurer of the Minot Area Chamber of Commerce and district chairman of the Northern Lights Council of the Boy Scouts of America. He owns Souris Valley Apartments.
 
    Other local winners in contested races included:    

  Ward County Commission
    John Fjeldahl 36.60%
    Larry Louser 34.43%

  Minot Park Board
    Connie Feist 29.30%
    Nancy Beck 27.20%
    Charles Emery 22.60%

  Minot School Board
    Laura Mahalick 35.13%
    Steven Velk 33.91%
    
  Minot City Council - Ward 1
    David Lehner 54.42%

  Minot City Council - Ward 5
    Miranda Schuler 53.13%

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     WILLISTON, N.D. (AP) - Voters in Williston have elected City Commissioner Howard Klug as the next mayor of the western North Dakota oil boomtown.  He bested entrepreneur Marcus Jundt with nearly 76 percent of the vote.  Klug has been on the City Commission for the past six years. He was a dishwasher at the El Rancho Motel in high school and is now part owner.  Klug says he wants to continue on the path to development and welcomes newcomers but has a less grandiose vision than his opponents.
 
     Klug's main opponent was Jundt, who received 19 percent of the vote. Jundt is a development-minded entrepreneur who says his vision was to turn Williston into "the emerald city of the north."  Outsider Jim Purkey gained almost 5 percent of the vote.
 
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     FARGO, N.D. (AP) - Voters in North Dakota's largest city say Fargo Mayor Dennis Walaker deserves a third term.  The 73-year-old defeated challenger Brad Wimmer Tuesday in a hotly contested campaign that focused on who had better credentials with players outside the city.
 
     Walaker is a former city public works director who guided Fargo residents through several major floods. Some voters say they're worried about future flooding and want him at the helm.
 
     Wimmer is a longtime public official who argued that Walaker had no rapport with state lawmakers and public officials from neighboring cities. The 60-year-old jewelry store owner said it was time for a "fresh change."
 
     Some Wimmer supporters say Walaker has done a good job but think the business community would be better served with Wimmer.
 
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     BISMARCK, N.D. (AP) - Several local issues have been decided in Tuesday's primary election.
 
     Voters in Morton and Burleigh counties have approved a temporary half-cent sales tax that will finance a new $70 million joint detention center.  Unofficial results show nearly 59 percent of Burleigh County and 51 percent of Morton County voters approved the jointly-owned jail.
 
     Residents in Watford City have voted to increase the city's sales tax to fund a new $57 million events center and other projects in the booming oil patch town.  The unofficial results from the Secretary of State's website show that 85 percent of voters agreed to permanently extend an existing 1-cent sales tax. In addition, the measure also adds another half cent at the same time to pay for the project.
 
     Williston voters approved a $34 million school bond issue with over 75-percent voting in favor. The bond will cover more than half of the cost of a new high school through higher property taxes. Hundreds of Williston students are now learning in portable classrooms.

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     BISMARCK, N.D. (AP) - North Dakota voters have approved a proposed constitutional amendment to set an earlier deadline for initiated measure petitions.  Measure 1 changes the date to 120 days before an election, rather than the current 90 days.
 
     Secretary of State Al Jaeger pushed for the new deadline to give his office more time to review signature petitions for accuracy and to allow the state Supreme Court an extended period to consider challenges.  Opponents of the measure called the measure a solution to a problem than doesn't exist.
 
     North Dakota did impose a deadline for submitting petitions at 120 days from 1919 to 1978, when it was changed to 90 days. The state currently has the second-latest filing deadline in the nation, behind Oklahoma's deadline of 60 days.
 
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     BISMARCK, N.D. (AP) - Republican incumbents in two North Dakota House races survived primary challenges Tuesday.
 
     Reps. Gary Sukut and Patrick Hatlestad of Williston defeated T.J. Corcoran in District 1. Democrats have not fielded candidates to run against them in November.
 
     In District 19, Reps. Gary Paur and Wayne Trottier defeated Steve Burke. The incumbents will face Democrat Carol Gierszewski in November.
 
     Bruce Eckre, Daniel Rugroden and Cindy Beck vied for the District 25 seats left open by retiring GOP incumbents John Wall and Clark Williams. Eckre and Beck won Tuesday and will face challenges in the general election from Democrats Richard Grosz and Alisa Mitskog.
 
     In Fargo's District 41, Democrats Pamela Anderson and Sheila Christensen outpolled Lillian Jones to run against GOP Reps. Al Carlson and Bette Grande in November.
 
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     BISMARCK, N.D. (AP) - Two Fargo-area attorneys advanced Tuesday to fill a judgeship in East Central District Court.
 
     Susan Bailey, an administrative law judge, and assistant Cass County state's attorney Tristan Van de Streek will square off in the general election in November. The winner will replace Wickham Corwin, who did not seek re-election after being accused of harassing a female court reporter.
 
     Bailey and Van de Streek outpolled assistant Cass County prosecutor Constance Cleveland and Fargo attorney Adele Page in Tuesday's primary election.
 
     Twelve other district judges are running unopposed. And no one filed to oppose Chief Justice Gerald VandeWalle, who is the longest-serving chief justice in state history. He has been a justice since 1978 and became chief justice in 1993.
 
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     BISMARCK, N.D. (AP) - Opponents of a proposed conservation measure are accusing those gathering signatures in support of the proposal of violating election laws by seeking signatures too close to primary polling sites.
 
     Members of North Dakotans for Clean Water, Wildlife and Parks say they were gathering petitions Tuesday around the state, but they tell the Bismarck Tribune that they didn't violate state law.  The state forbids groups from soliciting voters within 100 feet of a polling location.
 
     Jon Godfread of North Dakotans for Common Sense Conservation says he didn't measure how far the petitioners were from polling sites, but says they appeared to be too close.
 
     The measure calls for setting aside 5 percent of the state's oil extraction tax revenue annually for conservation, education and recreation.

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     FORT YATES, N.D. (AP) - A limited number of tickets will be provided to members of the Standing Rock Sioux Reservation who wish to participate in the tribe's Cannon Ball Flag Day Celebration that will be attended by President Barack Obama.
 
     Obama will pay his first visit as president to Indian Country when he travels to the reservation Friday.  Obama says he wants to hear firsthand about challenges Native Americans face and plans to announce new initiatives during the visit to help grow Indian economies.
 
     The tribe on Tuesday said tickets will be required because of limited space. The venue will be re-opened following the president's departure.
 
     First Lady Michelle Obama is also expected to attend the celebration.
 
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     TIOGA, N.D. (AP) - The U.S. Department of Agriculture and the Tioga Medical Center are breaking ground for a new 15,000-square-foot clinic in the city.  Jasper Schneider with the USDA says this project will double the size of the existing clinic in North Dakota's oil patch. Construction is expected to be finished in 2015.
 
     The medical center serves Divide, Williams, Burke and Mountrail counties. The USDA says the medical campus has quadrupled its number of patients in the last four years.
 
     The federal agency has agreed to provide a $6.5 million direct loan and a $1.5 million loan guarantee through The Bank of Tioga. The medical center and the Bank of North Dakota will also finance the project.


 

   (Copyright 2014 by The Associated Press.  All Rights Reserved.)

 

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