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Walsh County Press
Park River , North Dakota
December 21, 2010     Walsh County Press
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December 21, 2010

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DECEMBER 22, 2010 THE PRESS PAGE 5 He's making a list and checking it twice Santa Claus is coming to town! Left: Marit Ellingson concentrates on her list she's giving to Santa Claus at Santa Day in Fordville. Photo on front: Aubree Omdahl (left) and Jaxon Orndahl didn't know quite what to think of Santa Claus. Left: One year old Barrett Thorvilson applauds the arrival of Santa at Santa Day at the Fordville Legion Saturday_ afternoon. Right: Aubree Omdahl plays with a can of pepper which her mom, Chelsie Omdahl, won as a door prize at Santa Day in Fordville. LET YOUR VOICE BE HEARD Stay safe on the road Last year, 140 people died in traffic crashes on North Dakota roadways and alcohol played a part in 2 out of 5 of these fatalities. So far this year, ninety-nine people have been killed in motor vehicle crashes with alco- hol being a factor in half of these deaths. According to the National Survey on Drug Use and Health, North Dakota ranks number two in the nation when it comes to drunk driving. A person who chooses to drive impaired shows lack of respect for the law, for themselves, for their family and friends, and for others--especially those they share the road with. Impaired drivers affect all of us. The North Dakota Department of Transportation reported that the total economic loss of alcohol-related traffic crashes in 2009 is etimated to be $101 million. When you think about it, all alcohol-related traffic crashes are preventable. This holiday season, if you will be consuming alcohol while attending a holiday party or celebration, plan ahead by arranging for a designated driver or for a safe ride home. If you are hosting a party, make your guests' safety your first concern. Please be responsible; think before you drink. Sincerely, Bill Vasicek--Coordinator 701-780-5939 bvasicek@altru.org Depression, Deployment and the Holidays With our country at war in various locations all over the world, many families are incomplete this holiday season. Deployments of service men and women are becoming more and more common. In line with this situation is depression or the 'holiday blues'. Depression is common during the holidays and it's vital to recognize the symptoms for yourself or a loved- one. For example, you may experience an inability to sleep or an increase in sleeping, over eating or not eating at all, crying for any reason or no reason at all, weight loss or weight gain, loss of interest in activities. If a family is lucky, it has a wonderful support system and can handle anything that is thrown at them. Unfortunately, most people do not seek help when they truly need it. Most counseling experts highly recommend not being alone for the holidays, most especially on the actual day of the holiday. Another idea to thwart depression includes beginning a new activity that gets you either out of the house around other people or is extremely enjoyable for you. Sometimes finding an activity that makes you happy seems daunting but can be well worth the search. Sharing all of these discoveries with friends, family, and the service member who is deployed could also assist with preventing holiday depression. One final thought, let us always remember who is deployed and why they do what they do, but let's not for- get those waiting diligently for their joyous return. Katrina Hodny Walsh County Veteran's Service lATE ADJUSTMENTS CONT FROM PAGE 1 The upgrades at the Young Station will help remove 95 percent of sulfur dioxide (SO2) emissions and reduce 60 percent of nitrogen oxides (NOX) emissions. Further investment is needed in support systems and electrical infrastructure to operate the emission controls. Operating and maintenance costs, along with interest and depreciation, will add nearly $40 million to the Joint System's cost base by 2012. By the end of2011, the environmental upgrades to remain in full compliance with current federal environmental standds.iJi be c.ompleted.These upgrades will alloWthe YOung Station tocontinue to be the Minnkota's primary source of generation likely until 2042. The second item that increases the Joint System's costs is related to wind energy contracts. To prepare to meet the Minnesota Renewable Energy Standard and the North Dakota Renewable Energy Objective, Minnkota contracted with NextEra Energy Resources to begin purchasing significant wind energy resources in 2007, 2008 and 2009. About 1.3 billion kWh annually are purchased from NextEra, a wind energy developer, under 25-year contracts. These contracts were entered into to meet the joint system's long term requirement for renewable energy. All energy produced by these wind generators must be purchased at the contracted price. On a day when wind levels are high, much of this energy must be sold back into the wholesale energy market. It is expected that the decision to enter wind contracts now, rather than later, will provide the lowest long-term renewable energy cost. Unfortunately, in the short term, Minnkota is contracted to pay an over market price for the wind energy. The Joint System's average contract energy purchase price is currently higher than the depressed wholesale energy market, causing a significant loss on selling the wind energy not needed by its customers. The shortfall in 2011 is expected to be about $20 million. Due to the economic recession, lower demand for electricity has driven wholesale energy market prices down - about 50 percent below historic levels. Major reductions in manufacturing and industrial production have contributed to the drop in electricity usage. The ,Joint System pa.rtj.cipates in_the .wlaolesale energy,= market to both buy when additional electricity is needed and to sell when eleclricity resources exceed its load. In response to the 2009 revenue shortfall created by the reduced wholesale energy market, a one-half cent per kWh energy surcharge was instituted. It was, anticipated that this one-year surcharge would produce. about $21 million, which is equivalent to the revenuel shortfall. It now appears that because wholesale energy market prices remain very low, the surcharge will likely be extended through 2011. While maintaining compliance and reliability have required significant investment, Joint System rates are still competitive with other power suppliers in the region. Minnkota management will continue to scrutinize its operations in search of budget savings; however, many of the increases are based on fixed costs, compliance with state and federal standards and prior commitments that must be met. Even with .the challenges of cost increases now being experienced, it is Minnkota's pledge to continue to keep its electricity as the best energy value in the region. lriRK RI M  Pick up registration forms at the city office or download ,,, ilocroatio|& from City of Park River Website orom so, .,-:, li ls"g;!"gh'!" '= II I ,"::w" March =It '--I , t a r a n L g""' "* "' =''*' J www.PR-Parks.com Your sourcefor ttappy tappenin00s, Walsh Cotmty Press 284'6333 l Legisative Report ] The North Dakota political landscape is looking Agriculture committee this session. This will be a a little different today. We have two new repre- great opportunity to continue to work on tax and sentatives in Washington, but they are familiar agriculture issues. I look forward to new and con- faces. Senator-elect, John Hoeven, and tinued tax cut proposals, as we work to continue Congressman-elect, Rick Berg, will be taking excellent economic growth our state has been office around Jan. 3rd. experiencing. I am hopeful that they vI be good Ieidrs for ............ My greatest concern for this next session is the North Dakota and America as they bring a wealth growth of higher education spending. I believe the " of experience in both the public and private sec- long term tax health of our state is at risk if we do tors. They are also individuals that have deep not carefully balance the needs of higher education respect for the governing authority of the states, with the costs. It is important that we do not raise On Jan. 4th 2011, we will not only be celebrat- taxes to fund new higher education initiatives and ing my 28th birthday, we will also be starting the that we continue the original intent of the universi- 62nd North Dakota Legislative session. I am anx- ty system and that is to educate North Dakotans. ious for the session to begin as we have many Currently, we have more non-resident students interesting challenges to debate and discuss, then North Dakotan's enrolled at our state univer- Between our needs here in District 16 and the sities. issues in oil country, Fargo, and Devils Lake we I hope to convey to you that my phone is always will have our hands quite full. on for your calls on legislative matters. Please do It is my intention to introduce several pieces of not hesitate to contact me at any time about a par- legislation. I have been working on many topics ticular bill or issue. If you have ideas for legisla- but issues such as field drain tile, taxation, wind tion I am very interested in hearing them. Merry energy development, school equity, preschool Christmas! funding, and pensions are at the top of my concern, Sincerely, as well as, many other issues. Senator Joe Miller I will be serving on the Finance and Taxation Miller may be reached at 701.331.1491 or at committee as Vice Chairman again and the joetmiller@nd.gov UlIII Pick up. registration forms Don't miss m,= RI?, at th city office or download IIIfkl ,. from City of Park River Website an I,' 00)tle ,..,,...,-,,. i"  lit!Ill*It 1!It, 4th ' R|IQN v' - ,,,..,,, wcpress@polarcomm.com p.o. Box 49 ....... "* * * Park River, ND 58270 www,PR-Parks.com ;anta  said we have been good this year! So we will be closing December 24th at 3 p.m. we will also be closed on December 25th & 26th Out to Lunch Bunch Adam Ax Amy Heather Jana Jeanette Julie Karsa Melsa MoEy "Y'OIJ00 Paper in the of Walsh County