BISMARCK, N.D. (AP) – Some rangeland was contaminated when nearly 6,900 gallons of oil spilled at a well pad in Dunn County. The state Health Department says a valve failure caused the spill on Dec. 8 at a Burlington Resources Oil and Gas Co. site about 11 miles north of Killdeer. About 6,300 gallons of the spilled oil were recovered. The other 600 gallons impacted rangeland. Health Department officials are inspecting the site.
FARGO, N.D. (AP) – North Dakota’s only full-time federal judge says he’ll go into semi-retirement next year. Chief U.S. District Judge Daniel Hovland says he’s informed President Donald Trump that he plans to take senior status on his 65th birthday. But Hovland says he’ll continue to carry “a fairly full-time caseload” for a while because of what he says is a “significant” backlog of criminal and civil cases.
TOWNER, N.D. (AP) – Voters in the Towner-Granville-Upham school district are deciding whether to raise property taxes to fund school upgrades. Wednesday’s election is on an $8.9 million bond referendum that would pay for upgrades and new construction in Granville and Towner. Sixty percent approval is required for the measure to pass. If it does, work would begin next spring.
A former substitute teacher with the Fargo School District is accused of sharing child pornography online. Court documents say Jason Ellsworth Morris was charged with possession of certain materials prohibited and promoting a sexual performance by a minor. Morris was fired Monday as a result of the charges. Court documents say police received a tip about a possible image of child pornography that was shared online, and traced the IP address to Morris. Electronic devices seized from Morris’s home showed one image of suspected child pornography that was taken by a phone belonging to Morris.
BISMARCK, N.D. (AP) – The head of North Dakota’s Labor Department and Job Service North Dakota has been named to lead the state Commerce Department. Gov. Doug Burgum announced Tuesday that he has appointed Michelle Kommer to the position, effective Jan. 1. She succeeds Jay Schuler, who resigned in October over a controversial email about then-Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh. The Commerce Department has four divisions, overseeing tourism, economic development, workforce development and community services.