Gephardt to speak at Great Plains Energy Expo

BISMARCK – Former presidential candidate Dick Gephardt is a keynote speaker Tuesday at the Great Plains Energy Expo and Showcase here.

The event begins Monday at the Bismarck Civic Center Exhibition Hall. Other featured speakers include Sen. Byron Dorgan, D-N.D.; Clarence Cazalot, president and CEO of Marathon Oil; Arun Majumdar, director of the Department of Energy’s Advanced Research Projects Agency; and retired U.S. Air Force Gen. Charles Wald.

“This is a great lineup of energy leaders who will provide important insight to our discussion about how we boost domestic energy production, reduce our dangerous dependence on foreign energy, continue to reduce emissions and provide more clean energy jobs at home,” Dorgan said in a statement.

“I’m encouraging everyone in the region interested in energy issues to attend this premier event and hear from these world-class speakers.”

Keynote presentations and exhibitor showcases are open to the public. Registration for workshops and more information about the event can be found at www.bismarckstate.edu/gpee.

Legislative week ahead

Four state legislative committees are scheduled to meet this week as lawmakers begin wrapping up their interim work.

  • The Water-Related Topics Overview Committee meets at 9 a.m. Monday in the Roughrider Room in the Capitol.
  • The Employee Benefits Programs Committee meets at 9 a.m. Tuesday in the Harvest Room in the Capitol. The committee will discuss bill drafts related to the Teachers’ Fund for Retirement and the Public Employees Retirement System.
    Lawmakers will also hear a bill draft related to Public Employees Retirement System medical benefits coverage for autism spectrum disorders.
  • The Budget Section meets at 9 a.m. Wednesday in the Senate chamber. Lawmakers will hear about the status of the general fund.
    They will also hear a presentation by the University of North Dakota regarding a request to use $220,000 of unrestricted gift funds as local matching funds for the O’Kelly Hall renovation project.

    There will also be a presentation by representatives of the North Dakota University System regarding the status of the UND School of Medicine and Health Sciences Bismarck Center for Family Medicine capital project.

    Lawmakers will also hear about the status of the Veterans’ Home construction project.

  • The Public Safety and Transportation Committee meets at 9 a.m. Thursday in the Roughrider Room in the Capitol. The committee will hear a report regarding the use of state, federal, emergency and other highway funding.
    Lawmakers will also discuss bill drafts related to oil-impact-related infrastructure development grants and appropriations from the permanent oil tax trust fund to the highway tax distribution fund and state highway fund.

Complete agendas can be found at www.legis.nd.gov/council/interim/meetings.

Youth suicide webinars

Three experts on youth suicide will be featured this fall in a series of webinars from Well Aware, a national prevention program for school administrators and education policymakers.

The webinars discuss school-based strategies for suicide prevention, information on helping youth who lost a peer to suicide, and crisis response for schools and communities in the wake of a youth dying by suicide.

The webinars are offered from 2:30 to 3:30 p.m. on Sept. 29, Oct. 12 and Nov. 3.

Participants can register at www.wellawaresp.org/webinars.php. The webinars are free and open to adults who interact with or influence policy affecting youth.

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