BISMARCK, N.D. – As the legislature gets close to wrapping up, lawmakers are inserting late additions to bills in the hopes of getting them approved.
The state’s Commerce Department budget is a standard bill that comes up every session.
In addition to Commerce’s initiatives, House members approved a $5 million grant to help construct an amusement park in Jamestown.
While some lawmakers saw this as an attempt to add unpopular projects to the bill, supporters said the money is an investment in local communities.
“We fund these programs all the time every year. We fund them for ag. We fund them for energy. God knows we’re doing it for coal, and rightfully so. These people want it. These businesses want this stuff. It works. There’s a reason we do these every session,” Rep. Mike Nathe, R-Bismarck, said.
Lawmakers said the grant has safeguards the amusement park must meet in order to qualify for the funds, including raising $5 million of their own.
The bill passed 58 – 35 and now returns to the Senate.