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Gov. Doug Burgum wants to examine the way the state's higher education system is managed....

     BISMARCK, N.D. (AP) - Gov. Doug Burgum wants to examine the way the state's higher education system is managed. Burgum on Tuesday announced he is forming a task force that will spend next year talking about ways to improve the governance structure in order to help meet the state's educational and workforce needs. Applications for the 15-member group are being accepted until November 30th. Burgum will chair the task force.
     The North Dakota University System is managed by the state Board of Higher Education. Some lawmakers have criticized system leaders for failing to get costs under control. Higher education has a budget of about $625 million. Voters in 2014 turned down an initiative that would have replaced the board with a three-member commission that reports to the governor.


     DENVER (AP) - Opponents of Obama-era oil and gas regulations say a decision by a federal appeals court in Denver could allow those rules to go into effect temporarily, even though the Trump administration plans to revoke them. Four states, two industry groups and a Native American tribe filed documents Friday and Monday asking the court to reconsider its September decision.

    The decision said it would be a waste of time to rule on whether the regulations are legal because the new administration has begun to overturn them. But the decision cast doubt on whether the regulations are in force in the meantime.

    Colorado, North Dakota, Utah and Wyoming asked the court to reconsider. So did the Ute Tribe of the Uintah and Ouray Reservation, the Independent Petroleum Association of America and the Western Energy Alliance.


     BISMARCK, N.D. (AP) - A former executive for Sanford Health Foundation has been named North Dakota's new state land commissioner. Jodi Smith, of Bismarck, was selected from a pool of 32 candidates. There were two other finalists for the job, current Land Commissioner Lance Gaebe and Douglas Lee, of Bismarck.
     Smith served as vice president of the western region for Sanford Health Foundation for the last two years. She previously served as foundation director for Trinity Health Foundation in Minot and executive director of the St. John's Foundation in Billings, Montana. Smith earned a bachelor's degree in biology from Pepperdine University and a master's degree in business administration from Regis University.


     BOISE, Idaho (AP) - Federal officials have released their latest analysis on proposed routes for two high-voltage transmission lines in southwestern Idaho intended to modernize the Pacific Northwest's energy grid.

    The 183-page draft environmental assessment released by the U.S. Bureau of Land Management late last week covers two segments of the Gateway West project proposed by Idaho Power and Rocky Mountain Power. The BLM in January approved routes for the two 500-kilovolt transmission lines. But legislation by Idaho Republican Rep. Mike Simpson signed into law in May by President Donald Trump mandates segments not connected to those routes and altered the Morley Nelson Snake River Birds of Prey National Conservation Area. The BLM is now trying to connect remaining portions of the transmission lines with those segments. Comments can be made through Dec. 4.


     SIOUX FALLS, S.D. (AP) - Sanford Health has made its first investment in an international hospital. The health system's German subsidiary has acquired a minority interest in ISAR Klinik II AG, which includes a hospital in Munich, Germany.
     Sanford Health CEP Kelby Krabbenhoft says the investment is a significant step in its goal to advance health care around the world. Krabbenhoft says the hospital's ground-breaking procedures and medical technology are well-known.
     Since 2015, Sanford Health has arranged for American patients to travel to the Munich hospital, ISAR Klinikum, to have access to stem cell therapies allowed in Germany. Sanford has also sent 11 physicians to the hospital to better understand the impact of those therapies.


   (Copyright 2017 by The Associated Press.  All Rights Reserved.)


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