5 things to know today: NRA grades, DAPL documents, Fundraiser planned, Triple Ax, Returning home – InForum

Concealed Carry

1. Here’s the NRA’s grade for every North Dakota lawmaker

A school shooting that left 19 children and two teachers dead in Texas last week has renewed cries from gun control advocates to toughen federal and state firearm regulations.

Members of Congress have once again begun talks in Washington to tighten gun laws, but state legislators wield considerable authority over firearm rules at a local level.

North Dakota has some of the nation’s least stringent gun laws, and legislators have recently trended toward loosening restrictions on buying, carrying and using guns.

Last year, the Republican-dominated Legislature and Gov. Doug Burgum approved bills that

lowered the legal bar for using deadly force in self-defense


expanded concealed carry of guns

and blocked state and local governments from closing or limiting the hours of gun ranges and stores.

National Rifle Association lobbyist Brian Gosch

sat at a table with Burgum and a handful of lawmakers

as the governor signed pro-gun rights legislation into law in April 2021.

Each election, the NRA issues letter grades to candidates who are running for political office. The rankings are based on the person’s public statements about gun legislation, past voting record and an NRA questionnaire, according to Vote Smart, a nonpartisan website that compiles data about lawmakers in the U.S.

Read more

2. North Dakota Supreme Court will not rehear case establishing DAPL documents as public record


Fargo’s Weather Modification Inc. has received a five-year property tax break from the city for a $22 million expansion (in blue on this conceptual drawing) at its facilities at Hector International Airport. The tax break was approved by the City Commission on Tuesday, May 31.

The North Dakota Supreme Court swatted down a last-gasp effort by the developers of the Dakota Access Pipeline to keep internal documents out of the public eye.

The high court ruled in late April that

five-year-old documents

connected to a partnership between Dakota Access Pipeline operator Energy Transfer and a private security firm are public record.

Less than a month later, justices rejected Energy Transfer’s request for a rehearing of the case. Petitions for rehearings are rarely approved.

The Supreme Court’s April decision upheld a district court ruling that rejected an effort by Energy Transfer to keep private 16,000 documents pertaining to a partnership formed with security contractor TigerSwan during the pipeline protests near the Standing Rock Sioux Reservation in 2016 and 2017.

Read more from Forum News Service’s Jeremy Turley

3. Mother shot at Fargo restaurant dies from injuries; church fundraiser planned

Lucia Garcia, Moorhead

Lucia Garcia, Moorhead

A Moorhead woman who was shot last month over the lunch hour at a Fargo restaurant has died from her injuries, her family said.

However, a fundraiser at a Perham, Minnesota, church where her parents are parishioners will go on as planned, to help cover medical expenses that have mounted in the two weeks since the shooting.

Father Tom Skaja of St. Henry’s Catholic Church said the church will host a fundraiser to help pay the family’s medical costs from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. Sunday, June 12, which will include authentic Mexican food, a bake sale and possibly, a silent auction.

“It’s just like a small little gesture, because what they’re going through is just horrible,” he said.

An update posted Wednesday, June 1, to a GoFundMe page for Lucia Garcia

announced her death “with broken hearts and an emptiness too vast to compare to anything.”

Read more from The Forum’s Robin Huebner

4. Triple Ax closes in Fargo’s Northport Shopping Center


Gov. Doug Burgum urged Sanford Health CEO Bill Gassen to consider impact of Mott nursing home closure in phone conversations on Tuesday, May 31.

Triple Ax, an ax-throwing venue that opened this winter in the Northport Shopping Center at 2614 Broadway, has closed.

According to a note taped to its door, the business is selling its assets through an online auction with Fargo Liquidators. Bidding opened Sunday, May 29, and ends at 7 p.m. Sunday, June 5. All items must be picked up between 3 and 6 p.m. Tuesday, June 7.

In addition to axes, logs and plywood, the business is selling an assortment of kitchen appliances, tables, stools, chairs and more.

Co-owners Marcel Baumgartner and Erik Kalberg

first opened the business in March of 2019 at 5229 51st Ave. S. in Fargo

. That location closed in May of 2020 due to challenges related to operating during the coronavirus pandemic.

Read more

5. McFeely: South Dakota sailor comes home 81 years after being killed at Pearl Harbor

Bud Palm tree 4.jpg

Laverne “Budd” Nigg of Peever, South Dakota, was killed in action on Dec. 7, 1941, when Japanese soldiers attacked Pearl Harbor. His remains were unidentifiable for 80 years but have been returned home after a DNA match.

Contributed photo

Laverne “Budd” Nigg finally came home Thursday, June 2, nearly 81 years after he was killed during the Japanese bombing of Pearl Harbor that thrust America into World War II. His family was at Hector International Airport awaiting his remains.

The U.S. Navy Seaman 2nd Class, born on a farm in Roberts County, South Dakota, who spent his youth around Peever, South Dakota, will be laid to rest alongside family members at Calvary Cemetery near Browns Valley, Minnesota, on Saturday.

Nigg’s journey will end properly, on his home soil with full military honors.

For that, we can thank modern technology.

Nigg was killed on Dec. 7, 1941, when the Japanese attacked the battleship on which he served, the USS Oklahoma. His parents were informed by telegram first that he was missing in action, then that he was declared dead but unrecovered.

The remains from the ship’s recovery effort were unidentifiable, and all were buried in commingled graves at National Memorial Cemetery of the Pacific in Honolulu.

Read more from Forum columnist Mike McFeely

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