Gov. Jack Dalrymple expects oil mining to continue for decades in rapidly developing areas of western North Dakota.
Posted August 23, 2013
“I think that people are beginning to realize, gradually, that this is not your grandfather’s oil boom,” Dalrymple says in an interview for the latest edition of The Hegg Bakken Report, a weekly podcast produced by the Hegg Companies Inc. of Sioux Falls, S.D. “This is a different kind of thing entirely.”
“What’s happening in western North Dakota really isn’t exploration; it’s removing known petroleum resources from shale formations at a highly successful rate,” Dalrymple told podcast host Bill Daniels. “Based on what we know about these formations, unless the price of oil goes into a major collapse, development of this resource is going to continue for several decades.”
The Governor said meanwhile, state and local governments are pumping billions of dollars into critical areas of need, such as roads, water systems, housing, law enforcement and schools.
In The Hegg Bakken Report for the week Aug. 12, Dalrymple refers to Watford City, N.D., as ground zero for the national oil-production boom. “State and local governments are investing more money than ever before to meet soaring infrastructures in areas such as McKenzie County, which also benefits directly from oil revenue,” he said. “Financial assistance to oil country from taxes and impact funds will double in the state’s current biennial budget and might triple.
“The Legislature really stepped up and responded on a number of fronts. A four-lane highway is being built between Watford City and Williston, for example, and bypasses are being added to roads.
“In addition, $50 million in state money and tax credits are being invested in affordable housing, mostly in western North Dakota. Fifteen more state troopers are being hired to help back up local law enforcement officers.
“Millions of dollars in grants and loan funds also are being invested in schools, and a special impact fund is helping improve water systems.
“We’re attacking these challenges on all fronts,” Dalrymple said. “We have to keep up across the board. We can’t afford to really fall back in any area, if we expect this development to continue.”
Dalrymple has served as North Dakota’s governor since 2010. He previously served the state as lieutenant governor and as a representative in the Legislature. He is a farmer and businessman from Casselton, in eastern North Dakota.
The Hegg Bakken Report podcast can be accessed at heggbakkenreport.podomatic.com.
Hegg Companies is one of the leading commercial development firms active in the Bakken area of western North Dakota.