April Baumgarten joined the Grand Forks Herald May 19, 2015, and covers crime and education. She grew up on a ranch 10 miles southeast of Belfield, where her family raises registered Hereford cattle. She double majored in communications and history/political science at Jamestown (N.D.) College, now known as University of Jamestown. During her time at the college, she worked as a reporter and editor-in-chief for the university's newspaper, The Collegian. Baumgarten previously worked for The Dickinson Press as a city government and energy reporter in 2011 before becoming the editor of the Hazen Star and Center Republican. She then returned to The Press as a news editor, where she helped lead an award-winning newsroom in recording the historical oil boom.
Have a story idea? Contact Baumgarten at 701-780-1248.
- Member for
- 3 years 10 months
GRAND FORKS—Anyone who is for less trade is for fewer farmers, according to Democrat Mac Schneider. "North Dakota is an exporting state," he said Tuesday during a Grand Forks Herald editorial board meeting. "We have to maintain those markets if we want to maintain our economy." The Grand Forks attorney is running against Republican Kelly Armstrong as they seek North Dakota's lone seat in the House of Representatives, an office held by Rep. Kevin Cramer, R-N.D.
LAKOTA, N.D.—The U.S. Supreme Court will not hear the case of a North Dakota rancher who claims law enforcement used excessive force on him when they struck him multiple times with a Taser. Tim Lamb, an attorney representing Rodney Brossart in the civil case, received a letter Monday, May 21, saying a writ of certiorari has been denied, effectively ending the review of the lawsuit by Supreme Court officials.
BISMARCK—No other state in the U.S. has built homes at a faster rate than North Dakota since the last Census, according to recently released data. Construction crews built 57,160 housing units in the state from April 1, 2010, to July 1, 2017, according to U.S. Census numbers released Thursday. North Dakota's housing stock grew by 18 percent in that timeframe, the fastest in the country, the Census said. Utah was second with 10.7 percent, followed in order by Texas, Idaho and South Dakota.
GRAND FORKS—U.S. House candidate Kelly Armstrong will be one of the first to say a drawn-out trade war with China will kill North Dakota's soybean industry. He wants to be the one who makes sure the White House understands that as it negotiates better trade terms for U.S. farmers, the Republican said during a Wednesday, May 16, visit with the Grand Forks Herald editorial board.
EAST GRAND FORKS—Red River Valley farmers are optimistic about getting crops in the ground after cold and wet conditions delayed them from hitting the fields earlier this spring. Producers started planting crops this weekend in northwest Minnesota and northeast North Dakota, taking advantage of mild temperatures and drier conditions. Chad Thorson of rural East Grand Forks started Friday, April 27, and will plant soybeans, sugar beets, wheat and edible beans this season.
GRAND FORKS—A temperature warm-up is melting snow and ice fast, causing some farmland and banks along the Red River to flood. A flood warning issued last week by the National Weather Service in Grand Forks continued Monday along the Red River from the Canadian border through Grand Forks County. Central Traill County also was in the warning, and has had overland flooding along the Goose River, said Alyssa Scheve, the North Dakota State University extension agent for Traill County.
A Twin Cities wolf advocacy group said there are other ways to co-exist with wolves without using lethal methods to control populations, and wants to end the practice of snaring in Minnesota. "Most people don't know that hidden all over our woods are snares that trap dogs and wild animals alike, holding them in misery until their death," Howling for Wolves said in a statement earlier this year. "Our woods are just not safe. These barbaric and unselective wire nooses catch and maim whoever walks by. Banning snaring would be a step to reduce assaults on wildlife and pets."
RURAL LAKE BRONSON, Minn.—To Randy Coffield, raising cattle is not just a business. It's his life. "I came in as a greenhorn, and I've learned a lot over the years," the rural Lake Bronson rancher said as calves played in the straw-filled corrals behind his house. Calving season was starting to taper off in mid-March when Coffield, who lives in Kittson County, said he got three hours of sleep, mostly because he had to get up multiple times in the middle of the night to check his herd of 270 cows.
RURAL HATTON, N.D.—Mike Littlefield was 34 when he settled in Hatton 24 years ago. That was the 35th move in his life. The retired Air Force major is a satellite automotive technology teacher for Grand Forks' Red River High School who has worked in Hatton, Northwood and Mayville. His family tree is rooted in farming, and he enjoys the quietness of country life. At any time, Littlefield and his wife can turn off the lights and look at the stars with no interference from city lights.
GRAND FORKS—A company that wants to build a biorefinery north of Grand Forks has asked the county to issue $80 million in bonds on its behalf. The Grand Forks County Commission approved during a Tuesday, Feb. 6, meeting a resolution that sets the stage for a public hearing for the Red River BioRefinery bond. The $80 million bond has not been approved, but if the commission does say yes, the county would facilitate selling the bonds for the company. The bonds also would be tax-exempt.