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Tuesday, March 06, 2018

SCHMID: LOOKING BACK FROM THE LEFT COAST - MARCH 4, 2017

“THE GOAL, which has been lauded by many as the most important ever scored in U.S. women’s hockey history, was the result of countless hours behind the scenes in The Ralph working with Elander.” — GF Herald sportswriter Brad Schlossman referring to Jocelyne Lamoureux’s gold-medal goal in this year’s winter Olympics.  Peter Elander was a UND associate coach.
 
A LOST QUALITY  “In this generation, young people who don’t know how to do things correctly, they don’t want to do it,” Elander said. “If it takes a long time to perfect something, they don’t have the patience to do it. The Lamoureux sisters are outliers in that group.  If they see something hard, they see it as a challenge to improve it . . . almost a lost quality in today’s society.”
 
SLICKEST EVER  “The U.S. women’s hockey team won the gold medal in South Korea. Heck, they won the whole darn Olympics, if you ask me.” — Al Saracevic, SF Chronicle.  Continuing, he said, “Jocelyne Lamoureux-Davidson’s goal in the sixth round of the shootout may have been the slickest hockey move I’ve ever seen.”
 
GRAND FORKS AND UND are planning an event to honor Monique Lamoureux-Morando and Jocelyne Lamoureux-Davidson.  The Lamoureuxs played hockey for the UND's women's team after they transferred from University of Minnesota in 2009.  The twins are currently on a U.S. victory tour.
 
THE BEST HONOR  There is a deep irony accompanying the triumph of the Lamoureux twins — the UND women's hockey program has ended.  Columnist Mike Jacobs says the best way to honor the twins would be to restore the program.  He seemed to be taking a swipe at UND President Mark Kennedy when he suggested: “It was cut by an executive indifferent to UND traditions and indifferent to its aspirations.”  Jacobs did not mention the program’s high cost and poor attendance.
 
THE BEST STATES  U.S. News ranks Minnesota #2 (after Iowa) as the best state overall.  Minnesota ranked high in Quality of Life (#2) and Opportunity (#3); its lowest ranking was “Fiscal Stability” (#24).  ND ranked #4 overall (after #3 Utah) and #1 in “Quality of Life.”  ND was ranked high on “Infrastructure” and “Fiscal Stability“ (both #2); its relative weakness was “Crime & Corrections” (#23).  ND neighbors had middling overall rankings: SD #14, WY #21 and MT #27.  As usual, Louisiana (#50) and Mississippi (#49) had the lowest overall rankings.
 
WILD WEST  Here’s a short-hand version of an item shown here a few months ago:  Hannah Lloyd is an accountant accused of looting nonprofit organizations in Watford City.  She was employed by CPA Rene Johnson who has been indicted for fraud in collusion with Doug Carlile and James Henrikson.  James is in prison for murdering Doug, and so it goes.
 
GOLD SEAL WAX and Mr. Bubble are fading into ND history.  They were products of the Gold Seal Company founded by Harold Schafer, the father of two-time ND governor Ed Schafer.  Harold became a millionaire (when it meant something) and ND’s leading philanthropist.  Medora was a special beneficiary — his support turned Medora into the state’s leading tourist attraction.  Harold was awarded the ND Rough Rider Award in 1975 and the story of his life is available on a DVD titled “Mr. Bubble; The Harold Schafer Story” (Bob Lind’s Forum column).
 
ND HAS A FLARING PROBLEM  Producers flared 273 million cubic feet (mcf) per day in December, or about 13 percent of gas produced.  Five projects have been announced to build or expand natural gas processing plants adding 815 mcf per day and bringing the state’s total daily processing capacity to nearly 3 billion mcf.  Onek and Hess will each build 200 mcf per day plants in Mckenzie County, which should alleviate flaring on the Ft. Berthold Reservation, the area with the most stranded gas.
 
MINOT AFB has 150 missile launch silos spread around the area.  Montana and Wyoming have similar installations for a total of 450 launch facilities.  Each year, a missile from each of the three states is randomly selected, disassembled and shipped to  Vandenberg AFB (the only test site) in California for a test launch to the Marshall Islands in the Pacific.  Minot AFB personnel are involved in the entire process giving them training and participation in an actual missile launch.  When a test missile is removed in ND, a replacement is sent from Ogden, Utah. 
 
CANNABIS CRIME  Since 2009, marijuana arrests in ND have more than doubled and represent 50 percent of all drug arrests.  Large busts usually involve marijuana from outside ND passing through destined for other states.  Some confusion is present because of the increasing number of states legalizing recreational marijuana.  Proponents of legalization in ND hope to have a measure on the November ballot — they believe legalization would free law enforcement to focus on other criminal activity.  
 
SUSAN BALA and her company, Racing Services Inc., have a long and tangled history of confrontation with the state of ND.  It wasn’t easy for Bala, she spent 18 months in federal prison and RSI became bankrupt.  The ordeal began 15 years ago when the Fargo woman was indicted for conducting illegal gambling on horse racing.  She is getting a measure of redemption, her convictions were overturned, she was released in 2007 and is receiving a $16 million settlement from the state.  She’s not done yet — Bala has a lawsuit against the state for additional damages estimated at $31 million.
 
NEW FBI BOSS  A veteran terrorism specialist will take charge of the FBI’s Minneapolis division which covers Minnesota and the Dakotas.  Jill Sanborn's top priority will be preventing international terrorism recruitment — Minneapolis has recent terrorism incidents.  Other priorities will be crime in Indian Country, gangs, cyberthreats and far-right domestic extremism.
 
DAKTOIDS:  Of 831 Dakota Access Pipeline criminal cases, 196 are still open and 97 are inactive with warrants . . . A 16-county region around Grand Forks has 8,800 foreign-born residents, about 3.5 percent of the population.  Immigrants from Canada are the most numerous . . . Farmers and grain elevators which are not cooperatives are jumping through legal hoops to become cooperatives and qualify for tax benefits under the new law.  A wonderful opportunity for CPAs and lawyers.

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