Lawmaker: North Dakota's oil tax savings account unlikely to be tapped at first opportunity

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BISMARCK, North Dakota — The chairman of committee in charge of North Dakota's oil tax savings account says it's unlikely lawmakers will tap into the fund when its earnings first become available.

Rep. Keith Kempenich says there is no need to access the fund if money is available from other sources.

The Legacy Fund gets 30 percent of the state's oil tax collections. The money can't be touched before 2017 and it would still take a two-thirds vote of the Legislature for the state to dip into the fund.

The fund's balance is more than $2 billion at present.

Kempenich tells the Bismarck Tribune ( ) that the he doesn't "think there's going to be a will to appropriate it."

North Dakota voters approved the fund in 2010.

Information from: Bismarck Tribune,

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