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North Dakota to decide whether to put oil revenue into conservation
North Dakota to decide whether to put oil revenue into conservation

North Dakota has a $450-million budget surplus and the nation's lowest unemployment rate, but only about 725,000 people to enjoy it — less than one-fifth the population of Los Angeles. The state — a long neglected backwater — is becoming the Saudi Arabia of North America, growing into one of the nation's most affluent societies. Like anybody with newfound wealth, however, it isn't easy to decide how to use it. A contentious ballot measure this year is asking voters to approve a plan to divert 5% of future oil revenue to fund clean-water projects, wildlife preservation and parks. The Nature Conservancy, the Virginia-based environmental organization, is...

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