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5 things to know today: Finding unity, GOP filibuster, Urban hunting, Delta variant, DAPL dismissal

A rundown of some of the best stories found on InForum.

Robert Paulsen, father of Daisy 'Jupiter' Paulsen, 14, who was murdered on June 4, shakes hands with Nestor Sandy from the Liberian community.jpg
Robert Paulsen, right, father of 14-year-old Daisy "Jupiter" Paulsen, who was fatally injured in a June 4 attack, shakes hands with Nestor Sandy, a leader in Fargo's Liberian community, on Tuesday, June 22, 2021. C.S. Hagen / The Forum

1. Father of slain Fargo teen, Liberian leaders meet to find unity; candlelight service planned

Offering a message of hope for change and unity, the father of a 14-year-old girl killed this month met with leaders of the Liberian community and Fargo police on Tuesday, June 22.

Arthur Prince Kollie, the 22-year-old man charged with murder in Jupiter's death, is of Liberian descent, and pastors and liaisons from the local Liberian community met with Paulsen on Tuesday to express their anguish over the loss of Jupiter.

Read more from The Forum's C.S. Hagen

2. Hoeven, Cramer join GOP filibuster of Democrats’ voting access overhaul

Cramer and Hoeven.jpg
Sen. Kevin Cramer, left, and Sen. John Hoeven. Forum News Service file photos


North Dakota’s GOP U.S. senators joined with their Republican colleagues Tuesday, June 22, to block a Democratic voting access bill. The move will likely surface a renewed debate on Senate rules just as Republicans in state legislatures across the country enact their own voting overhauls.

The For The People Act, advertised by Democrats as a set of much-needed reforms, would expand voting and ballot access — such as vote by mail and early voting — and curb partisan gerrymandering. Portions of the bill also aim to make campaign finance more transparent, as well as register ex-felons to vote.

Read more from Forum News Service's Sam Easter

3. Bow hunters urge expansion of urban hunt along Red River

Brent Mitchell speak in favor of the Wildlife Management Program on Tuesday, June 22, 2021, in Fargo City Hall. Michael Vosburg / Forum Photo Editor

Bow hunters showed up in force on Tuesday, June 22, at a public hearing to show support for the city's urban program that harvests mostly deer but a few turkeys in areas along the Red River, with several also suggesting an expansion of the hunting.

Of the 10 speakers, only one opposed continuing the 15-year-old program that the Fargo City Commission is considering disbanding. A final vote is possible at this coming Monday's meeting.

Interim Police Capt. Chris Helmick, who led the meeting, said he would take the comments, as well as emails he received, as his department prepares a final report for the commissioners.


Read more from The Forum's Barry Amundson

4. Despite sinking COVID-19 infections, North Dakota experts worry about variants, seasonal wave

Jeremy Turley Forum News Service 2020 photo
Kirby Kruger (right), director of the North Dakota Division of Disease Control, speaks about COVID-19 at a press conference in Bismarck on March 3. Former State Health Officer Mylynn Tufte stands behind Kruger. (Forum News Service file photo)

The arrival of vaccines and warmer weather has caused North Dakota's COVID-19 infection rate to plummet, but local health experts say the war on coronavirus isn't over.

The state Department of Health reported 206 known active COVID-19 cases and a rolling positivity rate of 2% on Monday, June 21 — a remarkable improvement over the November peak of 10,413 active cases and a 16% positivity rate. Virus-related deaths and hospitalizations have also significantly fallen.

The massive drop in infections is surely good news, but the emergence of the so-called Delta variant and other strains of the virus could throw off North Dakota's positive momentum if residents let their guard down, said state disease control chief Kirby Kruger.

Read more from Forum News Service's Jeremy Turley

5. Judge dismisses tribe's case against DAPL, closing the books for now


FILE PHOTO: Indigenous youths protest the Dakota Access Pipeline and the Line 3 pipeline in Washington, U.S.
Jasilyn Charger (L) listens to speakers during a protest meant for U.S. President Joe Biden featuring Indigenous youths who live in communities effected by the Dakota Access Pipeline and the planned Line 3 pipeline, in Washington on April 1, 2021. REUTERS/Leah Millis/File Photo

A federal judge closed the books on a five-year legal battle over operations of the Dakota Access Pipeline Tuesday, June 22, after both the court and President Joe Biden's administration declined to shut down the pipeline during an environmental review.

In a brief order, U.S. District Judge James Boasberg dismissed all outstanding counts in the case and said the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers would not have to file status reports to the court on the progress of their environmental review. The judge said the Standing Rock Sioux Tribe, which has opposed Dakota Access since its construction began near their North Dakota reservation in 2016, can request for the case to be reopened if there is a violation of prior court orders.

Read more from The Forum's Adam Willis

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