And in North Dakota, a pipeline safety expert hired by the Standing Rock Sioux Tribe has concluded the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers’ environmental assessment of the $3.8 billion Dakota Access pipeline was "seriously deficient" and had underestimated the possibility of a pipeline spill into the Missouri River. Specialist Richard Kuprewicz concluded the pipeline should be rerouted away from an area that is prone to landslides. President Obama has indicated the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers is considering a plan to reroute the pipeline, and the U.S. Army Corps continues to withhold a permit necessary for the company to drill underneath the Missouri. But Energy Transfer Partners, the company behind the Dakota Access pipeline, says it’s currently mobilizing equipment to drill beneath Lake Oahe on the Missouri River, even though the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers has not yet granted the permit required to do so.
Maine Votes for Ranked-Choice Voting, Opening Door for More 3rd-Party Candidates
Meanwhile, in Maine, voters approved a ballot measure that will transform the way voting occurs in the state and will open the door for more third-party candidates. The measure approves ranked-choice voting, which means people can vote for their choice of candidates in order. If their first-choice candidate does not win, their vote automatically defaults to their second-choice candidate, and so on. Maine becomes the first state in the nation to approve this style of voting, which will be used for both state and federal elections.