As oil prices are on the rise, city needs also rise. A study from North Dakota State University predicted oil prices to rise from 50 to 70 dollars a barrel by 2023 and the effect that could have on population.
AE2S Nexus General Manager Shawn Gaddie says, “We built upon those projections in order to inform another layer down. Those projections were done at a county by county basis.”
Western Dakota Energy Association took those predictions and applied them to Dickinson, Williston, Watford City, Stanley, Tioga, Killdeer. They outlined each cities specific needs based on the oil price assumption.
“So, if you need new officers obviously those new officers drive police cruisers. They drive uniform needs. There’s more fuel and gas to drive those cruisers. All the way through each line item in the budget in order
for us to inform what those incremental differences are going to need to be by 2023,” said Gaddie.
WDEA also forecasted the possible funded gaps for each of the cities. Killdeer was the lowest of the 6 at 7 million. The highest came out of Watford City at a whopping 330 million.
“There’s still a whole lot to figure out. They didn’t hire us to solve all of the problems. And I don’t know if we’d have all the answers at this point. They hired us to quantify the problem at this point that they’re going to be faced with.”
Some of the most positive numbers that were given is the possible population growth. Every city was forecasted at above 20 percent. Again Watford City was the highest predicted at 48 percent.
“It’s not that any one of these cities has specifically adopted this as their growth rate or adopted this as their capital improvements plan. But it’s a scenario that they felt was reasonable for us to plan around.”
Representatives from most of the cities were at the presentation. While they didn’t have many questions, WDEA’s analysis seemed well received.