Critics say rail facility bailout would help Hoeven’s bank

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Sen. John Hoeven, R-N.D., speaks during a news conference after the Senate voted to confirm Amy Coney Barrett to the Supreme Court, Monday, Oct. 26, 2020, in Washington. Barrett was confirmed by the Senate as the 115th justice to the Supreme Court. (Graeme Jennings/Pool via AP)

BISMARCK, N.D. (AP) — North Dakota’s Republican-led Legislature is considering giving $10 million to a Minot intermodal rail facility.

It’s a move backers say will reduce shipping costs and increase markets for the state’s farm products and other commodities. Opponents argue the funding proposed for the long-troubled and financially distressed facility is nothing more than a taxpayer bailout for banks, one of which is partly owned by Republican U.S. Sen. John Hoeven.

The legislation seeks to provide $1.8 million for track improvements and $8.2 million that would be funneled to a trio of banks that acquired the facility through foreclosure.

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