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AG disputes new law in mineral lawsuit

Posted 5/30/17 (Tue)

By Jack Dura
Farmer Staff Writer

North Dakota’s attorney general says a new law to determine state-owned Missouri River minerals doesn’t apply to an ongoing appeal over minerals near Lake Sakakawea’s headwaters.
Signed by Gov. Doug Burgum late last month, Senate Bill 2134 will determine the state’s mineral ownership  from a 1950s federal survey of the historic Missouri River channel before flooding from the Garrison Dam. The law will likely resolve disputed riparian minerals of state and private parties.
The process involves a contracted firm’s review with findings to the North Dakota Department of Mineral Resources and Industrial Commission before final adoption, including public input.
Now the Attorney General’s Office says the law does not apply to the ongoing quiet title appeal to the North Dakota Supreme Court, known as the Wilkinson case, over minerals west of the U.S. Highway 85 bridge.

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