Vital projects for Minot appear on track in Bismarck

Despite some confusion with agencies and authority a few weeks ago, the two major water projects in the Minot area in need of state support appear to be still on track according to legislators who spoke to the community last weekend at a Saturday legislative forum.

“I think there’s pretty good agreement that two of the biggest water projects are NAWS and flood protection for the Mouse River Basin so I think we’re going to do okay there,” Sen. Randy Burckhard said last weekend. “I think they know how important those two projects are.”

Sen. David Hogue agreed funding for the Northwest Area Water Supply Project appears to have widespread support among legislators.

“The state engineer, the water commission board and the Senate Appropriations all agree that is a priority project. So that one stands out,” he said, “And for obvious reasons. There’s a feeling that we’ve got resolution of the litigation and now we need to step on the gas, and the people in Minot and the northwest have waited long enough.”

The Senate Appropriations heard last week about the Fargo-Moorhead Diversion project, which is competing for the flood protection dollars, said Hogue, who serves on that committee.

However, that project faces ongoing legal issues. Our projects have cleared similar hurdles and is progressing.

Optimism for flood protection and for NAWS is a good sign, and Minot looks safely in place to receive the assistance it needs for these essential projects.

Good job by the local delegation and legislators to date for communicating the importance of these projects to the viability to our region.

Let’s hope it continues and that the State Legislature can focus on real issues and not the theatrics that too often define the biennium.