The Fargo-Moorhead Diversion Authority is appealing a judge’s order to halt construction on part of its $2 billion flood control project until Minnesota completes its environmental review.

The authority filed its appeal Tuesday to a federal court’s order to halt construction of a ring levee around three small towns south of Fargo. Those towns — Oxbow, Hickson and Bakke — would be in the flood plain of a proposed dam across the Red River. The Minnesota Department of Natural Resources has not yet signed off on the dam, which would protect Fargo from frequent floods by diverting part of the floodwater onto Minnesota and North Dakota lands south of the city.

Federal Judge John Tunheim halted the levee construction until the environmental review is complete. North Dakota has argued it has a right to spend its money on its own territory without input from Minnesota and that the delay could cost millions.




Student tackles Lake Superior on paddle board

A University of Minnesota Duluth senior is attempting to be the first person to circumnavigate Lake Superior on a stand-up paddle board.

Jared Munch, 22, started out Wednesday from the mouth of the Lester River in Duluth.

Munch is using the adventure to raise money for the Neighborhood Youth Services of Woodland Hills to keep kids engaged in the outdoors and healthy lifestyles, according to his Facebook page titled: More. A SUPerior Adventure. (SUP stands for stand-up paddle board.) It links to a GoFundMe Web page: Jared’s SUPerior Adventure for kids.

Minus a fee that the website deducts, Munch is assuring donors that their money will go to the group and not his pockets: “ I am a big boy and I can fund my own summer fun.”

He hopes to complete the feat by mid-August.

Pam Louwagie @pamlouwagie



New school named for longtime board member

Bemidji’s new elementary school will likely be named after a longtime school board member.

The school board voted Monday to name the new school, in the planning stages, after Gene Dillon, who died in September. Dillon had served on the board for about 25 years.

His was one of four finalists’ names to arise from an online survey.

“Gene was well known for his common-sense approach to leadership,” Superintendent James Hess said by e-mail, “and he listened carefully to every concern that was voiced by residents and parents.”

Naming a school takes two votes. The school board will consider a second reading of the motion to name the school Gene Dillon Elementary School at its meeting in June.

Jenna Ross @ByJenna