North Dakota Legislature: Term limits, tax breaks, vaccine data all discussed

Photo by: North Dakota Legislative Branch
Photo by: North Dakota Legislative Branch

(Bismarck, ND) -- Several bills are moving along in the North Dakota legislature, including one that could undo something voters passed this past November.

A new proposal is aimed at overriding term limit restrictions approved by North Dakota voters in November.

The House Industry, Business, and Labor Committee heard a resolution Wednesday that would put a new term limits measure on next year's ballot. Voters approved term limits last year of eight cumulative years each in the House and Senate and two four-year terms for the governor. The House panel says it is reorganizing the 2022 measure, which specifically bars the Legislature from proposing amendments to alter or repeal the term limits.

Meanwhile, a bill before the North Dakota House would give a property tax break to natural gas pipeline projects.

The measure is meant to be an incentive to expand the reach of the energy source into more North Dakota towns. If the bill is approved, companies would be able to use the tax break for up to 15 years to help offset startup costs.

Lawmakers are also considering a bill that would hold owners responsible for their pets' whereabouts.

The bill says that a dog that leaves its owner's property and enters a different property without permission can be considered a public nuisance. Dog owners who don't take preventative measures after a written complaint has been filed with the court would have to appear before a judge. The bill passed the House in February and is making its way through the Senate.

And a North Dakota Senate committee is hearing a bill that would release more data about adverse vaccine events in the state.

The bill would require the state Department of Health and Human Services to publish data about adverse vaccine events. The database would mirror the national system for reporting reactions. Supporters say the move would improve the public's trust in vaccines.