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North Dakota: Voters Reject Conservation Funding Measure

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State residents voted to reject a proposal to use 5 percent of the state’s oil and gas revenue for conservation measures including land purchases, fish/wildlife habitat improvements, flood prevention, and environmental education. The ballot measure was strongly opposed by oil companies, farmers, business interests and education groups who asserted that if enacted, the measure would have limited resources in rapidly growing areas to respond to housing shortages, attract teachers or improve road infrastructure. Prior to the November 4 election, the North Dakota Land Board awarded $5 million in grants to schools and airports in oil-producing regions to mitigate impacts of rapid growth.