North Dakota Legislature: What to watch this week

Published on NewsOK Modified: February 3, 2013 at 2:06 pm •  Published: February 3, 2013
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NEW DIGS FOR ND GOVERNOR?

North Dakota is awash in dollars, so is it time to buy the state's First Family a new home?

HB1379 would authorize the construction of a new governor's residence on the state Capitol grounds, along with a so-called executive conference center. The measure would authorize $3 million for the new dwelling and allow another $3 million from "private donations or other sources."

Gov. Jack Dalrymple has not endorsed the idea.

North Dakota's present Governor's Residence was completed in 1960 and is an example of prairie style architecture. A major renovation was completed in 2000.

The home is the second official residence that has been built for North Dakota's governors. The original Governor's Mansion, built in 1884, is located a few blocks south of the Capitol.

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AGENCY NAME CHANGE

Some lawmakers on both sides of the aisle are working to change the name of the state Department of Labor to the state Department of Labor and Human Rights.

The lengthened title comes at a cost. Budget analysts estimate that adding the three words to the agency's moniker will cost more than $5,900 over the next two years.

The biggest cost in the name change would be $2,000 for the mass mailing of posters highlighting the new name change. New business cards and staff name tags are pegged at about $1,250.

Developing a new logo for the renamed agency is estimated at $444, based on staff time and graphic design costs. That new logo would adorn a door at the agency at a cost of $175.

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BRAVO FOR BOHL

The Legislature is slated to honor North Dakota State University coach Craig Bohl for guiding the Bison to back-to-back NCAA Division I Football Championship Subdivision titles.

The Thundering Herd stomped Sam Houston State 39-13 last month to claim the title, improving to 10-1 in the FCS playoffs with their eighth straight postseason win.

A commendation for Bohl says the team has "repeatedly brought North Dakotans and Bison fans worldwide to their feet to applaud their achievements."

Bohl could get more kudos down the line if the team continues its winning ways. He's agreed to an eight-year contract extension through 2021.

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Follow James MacPherson on Twitter at http://www.twitter.com/macphersonja



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