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University of Mary is seeing record enrollment.

This is Up and Down, where we give a brief thumbs up and thumbs down on the issues from the past week.

Up

The University of Mary is enjoying record enrollment this year. The freshman class of more than 600 students is the largest in history. Overall enrollment of more than 3,200 students is a 5 percent increase from last year. The university has become a year-round campus and that may have contributed to its growth. Several construction projects have been completed, which may be another draw for students. Also on an up note, Forum Communications Co. Chairman Bill Marcil and his wife, Jane, have donated $1.5 million to the university’s Vision 2030 Capital Campaign. The fall term is off to a great start for the school.

Down

State and tribal leaders recently spent several hours discussing differences on tax agreements. The discussion included the ongoing dispute over oil tax revenue from the Fort Berthold Indian Reservation. The reservation has been a hotbed of oil development in the western part of the state. Reservation officials still feel the Legislature didn’t consider their concerns when changing the oil tax law. It was a mistake by legislators not to consider those concerns. It’s important that state officials work with the tribes to reach an agreement that satisfies their concerns.

Up

Heaven’s Helpers Soup Cafe has been closed for two years. That’s a long time for people who relied on the cafe for meals. The good news is that Heaven’s Helpers has closed a deal on a building at 23rd Street and Thayer Avenue. The former Chesak Seed House will be renovated and become the new home for the cafe. The goal is to open by early November. Heaven’s Helpers provided a service to the community and it will be good to see it reopen.

Down

The recent bomb threats in Bismarck aren’t just foolishness, but are potentially dangerous. Anytime you evacuate a large number of people there’s a chance of an accident or someone could become scared and have a health problem. There’s nothing funny about a bomb scare. Hopefully, whoever is behind the bomb threats will be apprehended and punished.

Up

NextEra Energy apparently is doing it the right way. The wind farm developer has contacted Native American tribes about the wind farm planned in south central North Dakota. They have worked with the tribes to identify and protect cultural resources in Emmons and Logan counties. “It is in our best interest, as well as for the project and all stakeholders, to be as open and transparent as possible,” said Steve Stengel, NextEra spokesman. He’s right. Cooperation by all is the best way to get a project completed.

Down

The Lake Region Law Enforcement Center could be shut down. If it happens they have no one to blame but themselves. The jail has failed an inspection with numerous violations of standards. The center also has been plagued by escapes. The center has been relying on federal agencies to house prisoners there. Those agencies are pulling out and that means a drop in the jail population. The center needs to do more than just comply with the standards, it needs to show it can run a safe and secure facility over the long term.

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