The Board of University and School Lands (Land Board) this week approved two grants for domestic violence shelter in communities in oil and gas producing counties. These shelters will help victims of sexual assault and domestic violence in and around the Williston and Dickinson region.
The recipient of the grant funds in Williston is the Family Crisis Center and in Dickinson, the Domestic Violence and Rape Crisis Center. The grants, which total $1,987,682 will be matched two to one by local non-state funds.
The Land Board is made up of Governor Doug Burgum, Secretary of State Al Jaeger, Attorney General Wayne Stenehjem, State Treasurer Kelly Schmidt and Superintendent of Public Instruction Kirsten Baesler.
An advisory committee made up of government officials and advocates for domestic violence victims assisted in developing criteria, scoring, and recommendations to the Land Board for the allocation of grant funds. Eligible projects include adding funds where construction and shelter improvements were necessary based on population growth exceeding the current capabilities of existing facilities.
Separately, the Land Board also approved grant funding for infrastructure construction, or improvements, made in the cities of Stanley, Kenmare, Berthold, and Burlington. These four communities were affected by oil and gas development activities and identified as part of grant funding appropriations by the 2015 Legislature. A total of $2.5 million will be distributed to these four communities.
The Land Board has approved an allocation of funds for public safety grants for:
1) $1.22 million of Oil and Gas Impact Grant Funds for Law Enforcement needs. The Board will consult with the Attorney General’s Drug and Violent Crime Policy Board (DVCPB) to determine law enforcement needs as a result of oil development impacts in, or originating from, an oil producing county where crime-related activities have increased or in neighboring counties if the crime-related activities originated in oil-impacted counties.
The Land Board has asked the DVCPB to assist in establishing grant criteria, review applications, and make recommendations to eligible law enforcement agencies to enhance public safety by May 18, 2017.
2) $2.31 million to Emergency Medical Services (EMS) providers in oil-producing counties. Requests for funding to improve readiness, quality, and responsiveness of EMS response teams being impacted from oil and gas development will be considered. EMS Grant Round Announcement click here.
3) $2 million to domestic violence organizations as defined in NDCC section 14-07.1-01 located in oil-producing counties where new construction is constrained by available funding. Applicants for the Domestic Violence shelter grants have already made application.
The EIIO will be working with key stakeholders on specific procedures, criteria, and requirements during each grant round. Applicants can anticipate guidelines similar as prior grant rounds in each category.
Sexual Assault Nurse Examiner Awards
On January 30, 2017, the Land Board awarded grants that serve victims of sexual assault. A complete list can be viewed by using the following link.
Removal of Suspension
The State Land Board authorized removing 59 grants from suspension. This move places these grantees into an active status and will begin honoring the commitments based on the grant awards. The grants were suspended in February 2016 due to a severe downturn in revenue received from the oil and gas gross production tax because of declining oil prices.
Cancellation of Grants
Twenty eight grants were cancelled and closed out on January 30, 2017, which was approved by the State Land Board. These grants were successfully completed, or no longer required, and the remaining balances of the grants were returned to the main grant fund to be distributed to other grants still awaiting commitments, or award, at a future date. The total returned to the main grant fund is over $1.43 million.