MASSACHUSETTS MAN ORDERED TO REPAY OVER $100,000 TO NORTH DAKOTA COMMUNITIES
BISMARCK, ND – A Massachusetts man who took advantage of small community movie theaters across North Dakota has been ordered to repay over $100,000, announced Attorney General Wayne Stenehjem. The Consumer Protection division obtained a Judgment against Brian Vita of Peabody, Massachusetts, for engaging in violations of the North Dakota Consumer Fraud Law. Vita is the sole owner of Cinema Service and Supply, LLC, and sold digital equipment and parts to movie theaters.
For more information: Vita Ordered to Repay over $100,000 to ND Communities
Read the Court's Findings and Judgment
AUTHORITY OF PUBLIC ENTITY TO HIRE LOBBYIST
October 29, 2015
Generally, a state agency or political subdivision may not use public funds to hire a lobbyist unless such authority is specifically provided for by statute.
Read the Opinion: 2015-L-07
NORTH DAKOTA FILES LAWSUIT CHALLENGING EPA CLEAN POWER PLAN RULE
October 23, 2015
Attorney General Wayne Stenehjem today filed a lawsuit against the US Environmental Protection Agency, this time challenging its new Clean Power Plan rule restricting carbon dioxide emissions from existing power plants. In the lawsuit, Stenehjem asserts that the rule goes beyond EPA’s authority under Clean Air Act Section 111(d), unlawfully requiring a complete restructuring of the state’s existing electrical power system.
For more information: Lawsuit Challenges EPA Clean Power Plan Rule
Read the state's Petition for Review
PROPERTY TAX EXEMPTION FOR RELIGIOUS ORGANIZATIONS
October 21, 2015
The statutory language addressing expanses of property owned by a religious organization supplements the constitutional property tax exemption for property used exclusively for religious purposes. The burden of establishing that the property falls within the constitutional tax exemption is upon the person or entity who claims the exemption, and any doubt must be resolved against the claimant.
Read the Opinion: 2015-L-06
NORTH DAKOTA’S CHALLENGE TO MINNESOTA ENERGY LAW CONTINUES
October 20, 2015
Arguments in Minnesota’s appeal of a ruling that its Next Generation Energy Act is unconstitutional will be heard tomorrow in the Eighth Circuit Court of Appeals in St. Paul. North Dakota Attorney General Wayne Stenehjem sued the state of Minnesota in 2011, alleging that the Minnesota law violates the Commerce Clause of the US Constitution.
For more information: North Dakota's Challenge to Minnesota Energy Law Continues
UNREASONABLE DELAY IN PROVIDING EXPLANATION FOR DENIAL OF RECORDS
October 19, 2015
The City of Dickinson violated the law when it failed to explain that the requested records did not exist.
Read the Opinion: 2015-O-17
ATTORNEY CONSULTATION EXECUTIVE SESSION
October 19, 2015
The Stark County Commission violated the law when it failed to pass a motion before going into executive session to consult its attorney and also when it failed to announce the legal authority for holding the executive session. These omissions violated the law.
Read the Opinion: 2015-O-16
FEDERAL JUDICIAL PANEL STRIKES ANOTHER BLOW AGAINST EPA’S WOTUS RULE
October 13, 2015
Attorney General Wayne Stenehjem announced that North Dakota’s challenge to the EPA’s Waters of the United States (WOTUS) Rule has met with success in another federal court. Earlier this morning, the Judicial Panel on Multidistrict Litigation issued a unanimous order denying transfer of the district court cases that have been filed challenging the United States Environmental Protection Agency and United States Army Corps of Engineers’ “Waters of the United States” Rule.
For more information: Another Blow to WOTUS Rule
Read the Order Denying Transfer
PROCEDURES FOR HOLDING EXECUTIVE SESSION
October 12, 2015
If the information to be considered in an executive session is confidential by law, no motion is necessary. However, if the information is exempt by law, a governing body must make a motion and pass a recorded roll call vote before proceeding into executive session. The Morton County Commission failed to comply with the procedural requirements when it held an executive session for attorney consultation and negotiating strategy relating to a tangible threat of litigation.
Read the Opinion: 2015-O-15
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