The Latest: North Dakota borrows $4M more to police protests
BISMARCK, N.D. (AP) — The Latest on protesters trying to halt construction of the Dakota Access oil pipeline in North Dakota (all times local):
A North Dakota legislative committee has approved an emergency request to borrow an additional $4 million to cover policing costs for the protest of the Dakota Access oil pipeline.
The state’s Emergency Commission borrowed $6 million from the state-owned Bank of North Dakota in September. Officials say that money’s been spent. Protest encampments have attracted thousands of American Indians and others trying to halt construction of the four-state pipeline.
The commission, headed by Republican Gov. Jack Dalrymple, approved the funding Tuesday.
North Dakota has asked federal officials to reimburse the state for the additional law enforcement costs. Dalrymple says the state also would be open to contributions from tribes and the Texas-based pipeline company.
Some of the emergency appropriations is being used to pay for law officers from other states, including South Dakota, Minnesota, Wisconsin, Indiana, Nebraska, Wyoming and Ohio.
Someone has splashed oil on North Dakota’s Capitol in Bismarck.
The North Dakota Highway Patrol, which provides security at the building, says security footage caught two people dressed in black carrying the oil at the west entrance about 9:30 p.m. Monday. A small amount of oil was splashed on a wall and nearby sidewalk.
A sign placed at the entrance said, “You can’t drink oil.”
Troopers say no arrests have been made. The entrance was reopened Tuesday morning after it had been cleaned.
Protesters have been demonstrating for months against the Dakota Access oil pipeline being built in the southern part of the state. Patrol Lt. Tom Iverson says the sign suggests the vandalism is related to the protest.
A legislative committee will review an emergency request to borrow more money from the Bank of North Dakota to cover the cost of law enforcement related to the protest of the Dakota Access oil pipeline.
The state’s Emergency Commission, headed by Gov. Jack Dalrymple, will vote Tuesday on whether to borrow $4 million from the state-owned bank.
The panel borrowed $6 million from the bank in September and officials say that money already has been used to cover law enforcement costs.
North Dakota officials have asked federal officials to reimburse the state for the additional law enforcement costs.
Protesters of the Dakota Access pipeline are increasingly divided over how to stop the project.
Older demonstrators argue for peaceful protest centered on prayer, but younger activists are pushing for more militant and aggressive tactics.
The differences came to a head last week after law enforcement officers in riot gear forced hundreds of protesters off an encampment on private property, prompting some demonstrators to torch three vehicles on a bridge.
Chief Arvol Looking Horse, a spiritual leader of the Great Sioux Nation, told The Associated Press on Monday that leaders of seven tribal nations are deciding whether they will meet with representatives from the pipeline’s operator, Texas-based Energy Transfer Partners.
Looking Horse said tribal leaders would want any meeting to be on neutral ground. He said a meeting Wednesday in Bismarck is being discussed.