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ND Governor's Budget Includes Funding for Water Projects

ND flagThis month North Dakota Lawmakers head back to Bismarck for the new Legislative Session.  Governor Jack Dalrymple released the 2013-2015 Executive Budget last month, and it looks like the 2013-2015 Biennium will be a good year for water projects in the State.  During his Executive Budget Address, Gov. Dalrymple said, “We are committed to flood prevention in Fargo, Valley City, Lisbon, and of course, Minot. We will continue to lower Devils Lake without harming downstream communities. We will push for water supply projects throughout the State, and make many other public and private sector infrastructure investments.”

Here’s a brief overview of the Governor’s proposed budget with a focus on water projects:

-Increased funding for the Energy Development Infrastructure and Impact Grant Fund to $214 million, up from $135 million during the 2011-2013 biennium.  The Impact Grant Fund supports local infrastructure development in the energy-impacted areas of North Dakota.  The increased appropriation includes an additional $60 million in funding for airports and $4 million for oil-impacted institutions of higher education.  Governmental entities experiencing energy development impacts can apply for funding to help address the need for municipal water and wastewater infrastructure, streets, and other infrastructure needs.

-Funding available to political subdivisions through the oil tax formula doubled from $247 million to $521 million. Every oil and gas producing county would receive 100 percent of the first $5 million in oil revenue each year. The budget recommends that counties receive a constant 25 percent revenue share without any further caps or reductions, until the situation changes at some point in the future.

-Additional $102 million is allocated from the Resources Trust Fund for the Fargo flood control project, while officials work on a permanent solution to Red River flooding.

-$60 million is set aside to assist with further protection and home acquisitions in the Souris River Basin.

-$21 million is designated for flood protection projects along the Sheyenne River for communities including Valley City, Fort Ransom, and Lisbon.

-$500 million is allocated to water projects throughout the State, including Fargo’s Water Treatment Plant and rural water projects like the Western Area Water Supply Project, Northwest Area Water Supply, and the Southwest Pipeline Project.  The $500 million in funding for these projects would come primarily from the Resources Trust Fund.





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