Tag Archives: Information on Dickinson North Dakota

How Dickinson Works, And What Is Going To Happen, Part I

When I became an adult, and was living on my own, whatever town or city that I was living in, I tried to figure out what was going on, what was happening, and what were the causes and reasons for what was happening.

Whether it was my hometown, a college town like Gainesville, a city like Tampa, or a mountain destination town like Flagstaff, I took an interest in the nicest, largest homes, the wealthiest neighborhoods, and I wondered who were the people who lived there, what did they do for a living, and how did they make their money?

The people who were able to afford very nice homes, nice automobiles, and enjoyed a high standard of living, I believed that if I could learn some of the things that they had done to become successful, maybe I could copy them or adapt some of the things that they had done, in order to become successful too.

Successful people who won the lottery or inherited a large amount of money from their relatives, you obviously can’t just copy that.  Medical doctors who became wealthy as they got older, most people aren’t able to become a doctor in the first place.  Wealthy real estate brokers, insurance company owners, car dealership owners, manufacturing company owners, and other business owners, these people caused me to wonder how they got started.

When I had the chance to talk to and get to know wealthy, successful business owners, it turned out that their success had a lot to do with being in the right place, at the right time, with the right idea, and a willingness to take risks at that time.  There was some “dumb luck”, or “blind luck”, but these people also had an understanding or belief that their idea would work at that particular time and place, that came from their understanding of what was going on in the World, and the place that they were.

What I am trying to explain, is that if you want to be successful, you first have to understand where you are, what is going on, and what is happening where you are.  You, the reader, are probably thinking that I am pointing out the obvious, thinking, “Of course people try to understand what is happening around them.”  But, no, they don’t, not really.  Most people just get an impression or idea in their head, and that is their conclusion.  They don’t think any further, to test, challenge, examine, or validate their conclusions.

In Dickinson, North Dakota, where I am currently living, most of the people here form their opinion about reality from listening to their neighbors, friends, relatives, local politicians, community leaders, and Chamber of Commerce; from watching television news stations out of Bismarck and Fargo; from reading the Bismarck Tribune or Dickinson Press newspaper; or from what they see on Facebook or hear on the radio.  These sources that I just mentioned are O.K. to get information from, but the impression that local people get from these sources, is their conclusion, they don’t think any further to examine, analyze, test, check, or question their immediate conclusions.

Concerning Dickinson, what the newscasters in Bismarck or Fargo said on the nightly news, what nationwide newscasters said, what local politicians, community leaders, company owners, business managers, and Chamber of Commerce representatives said in newspaper, radio, or television interviews, when their statements didn’t seem to match what was actually happening in Dickinson, I was angry about it, because people in Dickinson formed their understanding of reality and made their life decisions based on incorrect information that was being reported, written, said, and spread.

Questioning what newscasters in Bismarck, Fargo, or New York said about Dickinson, had they ever even been to Dickinson?  It turns out, that most news reporters and writers for television, radio, newspapers, magazines, and journals were getting their information from local politicians, community leaders, company owners, business managers, and Chamber of Commerce representatives, a group of people who can’t or won’t ever say anything other than positive outlook statements.

The following misinformation was reported so often and repeated so often that most of the people in Dickinson still to this day, think that this is reality:  One, “This oil boom is going to last for the next twenty years.” and Two, “Everyone working in the oil field is making $100,000 per year.”

The oil boom in North Dakota lasted from 2007 through 2015.  This oil boom began once the price of oil was over $100 per barrel, it became profitable to extract North Dakota oil through the process of hydraulic fracturing.  Once the price of oil dropped below $50 per barrel in 2015, it was no longer profitable for oil companies to drill and use hydraulic fracturing to produce oil.

The number of operating oil drill rigs in North Dakota went from over 200, to less than 50 currently.  From 2015 through the present, residents in Dickinson still express the belief, “It’s going to come back.” and “It’s starting to pick back up again.”  In the history of the World, there has never been an oil boom that lasted more than ten years in one place, but the people in Dickinson do not believe this reality.

One of the largest oil companies operating in the Dickinson area, is Whiting Petroleum.  The stock price of Whiting Petroleum reached an all-time high of $370 per share in 2014.  Last week, Whiting Petroleum stock was trading at $1.28 per share.  In the past year, Whiting Petroleum laid off one-third of its workforce in order to cut costs.

Many people in Dickinson have believed for years that, “Everyone working in the oil field is making $100,000 per year.”  This has never been true, and it certainly is not true now.  This belief, and the belief that “It’s starting to pick back up again” has misguided many of the people in Dickinson, causing them to make bad life decisions.

Instead of realizing that the oil boom in North Dakota was a once-in-a-lifetime, short-lived deal, most of the people in Dickinson acted like there was no end to it.  The sudden dramatic increase in local business, the sudden increase in demand for goods, services, and housing, allowed many local people to make windfall money, especially land owners and people who owned the mineral rights on land.

What did the local people in Dickinson do with their windfall money?  Most of them purchased the most expensive, over-priced, top-of-the-line pickup truck, travel trailer, UTV, toy hauler, or snow mobile.  Now, looking back on these purchases made in 2008-2014, roughly ten years later, all of these things are worth less than half of what they originally cost, and they are continuing to decline in value until they are nearly worthless.

Had the people in Dickinson known the truth, that this North Dakota oil boom would last from 2007-2015, they may not have spent their windfall money so carelessly and frivolously, and instead saved and invested their money so that it would last them for the remainder of their lives.

Another thing that happened in Dickinson during the oil boom, the housing prices doubled, then quadrupled.  A house in Dickinson that might have sold for $75,000 in 2006, the asking price in 2012-2014 might have been $300,000.  Some local people, and some out-of-state workers, bought houses in Dickinson at the peak of the oil boom real estate market.  They did this, because they believed that the oil boom would continue, they had better buy a house now, the house prices would only continue to increase.

Now that the oil boom is over in Dickinson, a house that was purchased for $300,000 in 2012-2014, it might only sell for $200,000 now, or it might not even sell at $150,000.  Most of the people in Dickinson are not making very much money now, many people have left Dickinson, and many people have job uncertainty.

Everyone in Dickinson needs to start over on assessing what reality is in Dickinson, what is going on, what is happening, what are the reasons and causes for what is happening.  In my next blog post, Part II, I will start with the basic essential businesses, services, and employees in Dickinson, that which everything else is built upon, so that people can see and understand what is happening, and what is going to happen.

The People, Police, And Judges In Dickinson Need To Change Their Attitude About Crime

In 2017 through 2019, many times it seemed like the crime in Dickinson, North Dakota was out of control.  I had never personally experienced very much crime in Dickinson until I moved to downtown Dickinson in the spring of 2017.  Within a couple of months my pickup truck was stolen.

By making flyers with a photograph of my stolen truck, and handing these flyers out all over Dickinson and the neighboring towns, I eventually received some phone calls and leads about who had stolen my truck.  I found out, the person who had stolen my truck, he very recently had been released from prison for vehicle theft, and that there was currently a warrant out for his arrest for possession of stolen property.

I got my truck back about a week after I found out who had it.  In the process of trying to find my truck, I read the complete criminal record of the person who had it, and the criminal records of this person’s friends and associates.  This was my introduction to the fact that Dickinson has a large amount of residents who are repeat, continual, habitual, life-long criminals.

One of the things that I used to try to locate my stolen truck and the person who had it, was Facebook.  I looked at this person’s Facebook posts, the people that he was communicating with, who these people were, and where these people were located.

The Facebook posts and Facebook friends, showed that there were easily more than several hundred drug-user, drug-addict, thieving men and women in Dickinson who were not ashamed, and not intending to stop what they were doing.  Their names were familiar from the weekly Dickinson Press newspaper articles “Crimes & Courts” and “Police Blotter”.

I had always been interested in reading the Dickinson Press newspaper articles on crime in Dickinson, reading the names of the people who were caught, and what they had been arrested for, to see if there was anyone that I knew, or to save their names in my memory in case I met them in the future.  But after seeing all the drug-addicts/criminals on Facebook, seeing that they all loosely knew and associated with each other, reading their criminal records on the ND Court Repository, I learned that not only does Dickinson have a large permanent habitual criminal population, but from reading the Dickinson Press, I now saw that these people are continually arrested again, and again, and again, over and over, with no end in sight.

I wasn’t the only person who saw this.  The parent company of the Dickinson Press newspaper, Forum Communications, their owners, editors, staff, and reporters noticed this too.  In August of 2019, Forum Communications, through each of its newspapers published five articles on crime, courts, prisons, parole, and probation written by reporter Sam Easter.  Here is the link to the gateway article: https://www.thedickinsonpress.com/news/crime-and-courts/4046635-Too-big-too-fast-North-Dakota’s-other-housing-problem

The reporter Sam Easter was so thorough and detailed in his newspaper articles, that I think many North Dakotans lost one of the main, most important observations and conclusions:  There are so many habitual, repeat, life-long criminal offenders in North Dakota because they are not being sent to prison, or being kept in prison, because it costs $43,000 per year to keep them in prison, and only $1,700 per year to keep them on parole/probation.

For some of the families in the Dickinson area, a life of crime is just a lifestyle choice.  To them, a little bit of marijuana, a little bit of methamphetamine, a little bit of heroin, some drug dealing, some stealing, some robbery, some check fraud, some assault, fleeing & eluding, probation, and violation of probation, make for a good way of life, that they pass on to their children.

When will you learn, to just put each of these fuckers in prison for ten, fifteen, twenty years, and just leave them there for their entire sentence?  You think that it costs $43,000 per year to keep them in prison, how much does it end up costing when they are not in prison and breeding five to ten children who will be exactly like them?  How much does it end up costing when they are not in prison and introduce 50 to 100 people to meth or heroin and get them addicted?

The People, the Police, and the Judges in Dickinson are too tolerant and lenient on crime.  In the past in Dickinson, there probably were individuals who might have committed a crime only out of desperation, impulsiveness of youth, or drunkenness.  Their criminal behavior might have been corrected by a short time in jail and probation.  But this is generally not the case in Dickinson anymore, the people who are being arrested, have been arrested again, and again, and again with no indication that they are going to stop what they are doing.

The policy or practice of no jail time, suspended jail time, short jail time, and probation is sending a message to the hundreds of habitual repeat criminals in Dickinson that they have nothing to fear, they can keep right on doing what they have been doing.

Dickinson City Commissioners Study Wage Rates, But I Can Tell You What Is Wrong

A couple of months ago the City Commissioners in Dickinson, North Dakota discussed examining City of Dickinson employee wage rates to determine if they were normal, too high, or too low in comparison to wage rates elsewhere in the U.S.  Then, the City Commissioners even hired a wage analyst consultant to conduct a study/audit on what City of Dickinson employees were paid in comparison to elsewhere.

I don’t mind that the City Commissioners wanted to find out where Dickinson stood in regards to compensation for City employees.  This is probably something that needed to be done for a number of reasons, such as making sure that all City employees are paid fairly, and that Dickinson tax revenue money is not being wasted.

However, what the City Commissioners forgot to take into account, and what the wage analyst consultant probably doesn’t fully understand, is that Dickinson is a very difficult and very unpleasant place to live.  The wage rates are relatively high in Dickinson, because people don’t want to live here.

I want to explain as completely and as thoroughly as possible why the wage rates in Dickinson are high, due to the fact that Dickinson is a very difficult and very unpleasant place to live, thus wage rate comparisons with other areas are almost irrelevant and meaningless.

To begin with a quick anecdote, me personally, I get paid more than twice as much in Dickinson, as I would be paid back in Idaho where my home is.  In Dickinson at my place of employment we sometimes have difficulty filling job openings, whereas back in Idaho, if this job paid half as much, like $9-$10 per hour, there would probably be over 500 applicants for this job.  But the cost of living where my home is in Idaho is less, and daily life is easier in just about every way.

I now want to explain in an organized and thorough fashion, why and how Dickinson is a very difficult and very unpleasant place to live, and thus why the wage rates are higher in Dickinson because no one wants to live here.

Lack of opportunity for social drinking, dining, and relaxation in Dickinson:

  • Police in Dickinson are too over-eager and over-aggressive in trying to stop people for DUI in Dickinson.
  • Where the restaurants and bars are located in Dickinson, Villard Street, State Avenue, and Main Avenue, the Police drive by again and again, spot vehicles in restaurant and bar parking lots, stop patrons as they leave or are on their way home.
  • People in Dickinson can not safely go to bars and restaurants in Dickinson to relax, socialize, and have a few drinks, because of the high risk of DUI, losing their driver’s license, and losing their job.

Very poor service at bars and restaurants in Dickinson:

  • Widespread practice of hiring drug-addict women from Coeur d’Alene, Spokane, and the women’s prison for bartenders and servers in Dickinson.
  • Widespread practice of bartenders and servers in Dickinson acting nasty and incompetent so that customers leave, so that they don’t have to serve anyone.
  • The server’s process in Dickinson is 1) Stand outside smoking a cigarette until the customers enter, find a table, and start looking around for their server.  2)  Take drink order, bring drinks, take food order.  3)  Go back outside and smoke a cigarette until after customer’s food is cooked and waiting.  4)  Deliver food to customer’s table, ask if anything is needed.  5)  Go back outside and smoke a cigarette, and talk on the phone until customers are getting up from table to leave.

Shortage of women and lack of attractive women in Dickinson:

  • Most women in Dickinson are overweight and unattractive, they usually sneer, leer, glare, and scowl.  Usually unkempt, with a cigarette hanging out of their mouth.  Overweight women in Dickinson can be seen trying to paddle through the air with their arms as a means of locomotion.
  • When women in Dickinson stop mid-way across a parking lot to glare and scowl at passing vehicles, it is not just out of meanness, it is partly because that is as far as they could walk without stopping to rest.
  • Shortage of women in Dickinson has led to many acts of sexual perversion such as many recent criminal charges of  “Gross Sexual Imposition on a Minor” and sexual assaults of horses and cattle  https://www.grandforksherald.com/news/2187378-dickinson-officials-investigate-sexual-assault-horse
  • Prostitution is not permitted in Dickinson.  The Police in Dickinson place fake advertisements for women wanting to have sex, then arrest the men who seek to meet these women.

Over-aggressive Policing of  law-abiding people, while criminals run loose in Dickinson:

  • The easiest and safest people for the Police in Dickinson to pull over are law-abiding non-criminals who are on their way to work, to the grocery store, or home from a restaurant, so this is who the Dickinson Police target the most.
  • Criminals, especially thieves and drug-addicts, continually run loose in Dickinson, using drugs, dealing drugs, stealing, and burglarizing.  When these thieves and drug addicts are apprehended in Dickinson, within a few days they are out of jail and loose on the streets again, doing the exact same criminal activity, only they become more and more emboldened each time they get caught and are quickly released.

Over priced real estate in Dickinson with no justification:

  • During the beginning of the oil boom from 2007 through 2010, the rents and house prices in Dickinson doubled, then tripled, then quadrupled.   Due to the gouging on rents and house prices, most workers who came to Dickinson made up their minds that they would eventually have to leave Dickinson and that there was no way that they could afford to move to Dickinson permanently.
  • The oil boom is now over, oil field workers and others continue to lose their jobs, most of the oil companies are downsizing, people are leaving Dickinson, people don’t want to live in Dickinson, yet rents and house prices remain unjustifiably high.

Lack of competent, professional medical care in Dickinson:

People in Dickinson experience hostility, nastiness, unfriendliness, undermining, and lack of cooperation from others and co-workers:

  • The people in Dickinson are mean, nasty, unfriendly, hostile, hateful, uncooperative, sadistic, cruel, and undermining, especially to people who are not from here, and especially at work.  Here is an example

Early Morning Thefts In Downtown Dickinson, North Dakota

I spent a good part of Friday, Saturday, and Sunday during daylight hours, working on vehicles, getting things done, making progress.  Each night I looked on the internet for parts, vehicle problems that were similar to what I had, and repairs that other people had done.

This morning, Memorial Day, when I went outside my apartment building to go to my truck, I saw that someone had tried to steal my mountain bike from the bed of my truck.  I had a cable lock going through the bicycle frame and front wheel, because the front wheel has a quick-release lever.  The front wheel was removed and hanging there, and the bike was pulled out and hanging there.

This really made me angry, for a whole bunch of reasons.  I keep a lot of tools and equipment in my vehicles.  I use these tools and equipment regularly, and they need to stay in my vehicle.  Things like a battery jump start box, battery charger, digital multi-meter, compressed air tank, socket set, cordless tool set, dremel tools, other tools, spare tires, shop jack, and so forth.  This truck got stolen in Dickinson in 2016, and $2,000 worth of tools and equipment were removed from it.

When this truck got stolen in Dickinson in 2016, the tools and equipment that were taken from it, plus the four new tires that were taken off of it, plus the time and money that I spent driving around from Richardton to New England to Belfield looking for my truck and handing out flyers, this all cost me a loss of about $3,000.

The person who stole my truck and later abandoned it, he is a long-time, well-known car thief in the Dickinson area, and a drug addict.  He spends most of his time in jail and in prison.  Getting arrested, being placed in jail, and going to prison are not a deterrent to him, nor will he ever, ever be able to pay any restitution for what he stole.

So now, I have a cable lock going through my truck steering wheel, a cable lock going through my spare tires, and a cable lock going through my mountain bike.  I have to double check that my tool box is locked, and I have to double check that anything of value is locked inside of a locked chest, which is cable locked to the seat frame.

But all of this locking everything up, all of this worry about locking up everything that I own, trying to keep the tools and equipment that I use and need, it’s like a losing battle here in Dickinson.  Living in Dickinson, it’s always, always one step forward, and two steps back.

Low-life, scum-of-the-earth thieves still roam the streets of downtown Dickinson at night trying to steal things out of people’s vehicles.  They aren’t afraid of the Police, they aren’t afraid of going to jail, and they aren’t afraid of going to prison.  The Police, the Judges, the jail, and prison aren’t bad enough or severe enough for them to be afraid, these things aren’t a deterrent to them.

I have to be careful about what I say, but I would like to kill the next person that I catch trying to steal something from me or vandalize something that I own.  I know that I would probably get caught, that I would go to prison for years, maybe life, maybe get the death penalty.  The thieves in Dickinson have no fear of getting caught, they will keep on stealing because their punishment is never severe enough, so I would just like to kill them right on the spot.

I called the Dickinson Police this morning, and an officer came and he looked at what I had going on.  The Police Officer suggested to me that I get a trail camera.  I went to Menards and I bought a high-definition security camera system for $190.  I mounted the outdoor weatherproof high-definition security camera on my apartment balcony, aimed at where I park my vehicles.

The power and video cable from the outdoor camera go to a DVR inside my apartment that has a 1 terabyte hard drive.  The default operation of the outdoor camera and DVR is to record video whenever motion is detected.  However, I changed the settings so that the outdoor camera video is recorded continuously.  There is enough memory for the camera video to be recorded continuously for eighty hours before the DVR automatically begins overwriting the older video.

Now, I sit here in my living room glancing at my television screen, which shows what is going on in the apartment building parking lot and out on the street.  This afternoon, I went over to one of my neighbor’s house to tell him what had happened, and he and his wife told me that a luggage carrier had been stolen off of a truck one block away earlier this week.

The second neighbor that I spoke to this afternoon, he told me what else had been stolen this past week in this neighborhood.  The third neighbor that I spoke to, he showed me the Nissan car that had been broken into last week.  The first two neighbors that I spoke to this afternoon, they had an idea where the thieves are coming from, and this area is where I thought they were coming from too.

There is a very wretched and distressed apartment building, and several very distressed houses that have been subdivided into little cubby holes for the drug addicts to live in, that pretty much guarantee that we will always have crime in this neighborhood downtown.  The drug addicts come out after midnight and wander around the neighborhood looking for things to steal.

Though these drug addicts wandering the streets at night in Dickinson attract the attention of the Police, what are the Police going to do besides asking them a few questions about what they are doing and where they are going?  The way that Dickinson is now, probably 25% of the people living downtown have had a drug conviction in the past.  With all these drug addicts walking the streets after midnight, each claiming that they are going somewhere, what are the Police going to do?

The Truth About What Is Going To Happen To Dickinson, North Dakota

It is tiring, frustrating, and upsetting to me, to continue to see people in Dickinson refusing to recognize and acknowledge what is going to happen to Dickinson, North Dakota.  I don’t want to see anyone being taken advantage of, and that is the way that I look at what people are attempting to do in Dickinson, to deceive others for financial gain.

Why can’t everyone just accept and admit, that Dickinson already experienced an oil boom in the 1950s and the late 1970s, and that after each of these oil booms Dickinson experienced a contraction in the economy, many people losing high paying jobs, businesses closing, people moving away, property decreasing in value and becoming difficult to sell.  This most recent oil boom ended in 2015, there will be a continued decrease in the population of Dickinson, but no one will admit this, and everyone is pretending that this isn’t going to happen.

The very wealthy owners of the local banks in Dickinson, most of whom do not live in Dickinson, have already put in place lending policies that show that they understand what is going to happen in Dickinson: many people losing their jobs, many people moving away, properties decreasing in value, and properties becoming difficult to sell.  I will give three brief example of these local bank lending policies:

I wanted to purchase a manufactured home in Belfield on its own 75’x140′ lot that was for sale for $20,000 to $25,000.  This treed and grass corner lot with water, sewer, and electric to it was probably worth $20K, without even considering the 3br, 1ba fully furnished home in good condition with new siding, added enclosed porch, and added open deck.  I contacted five local banks, and each one of them said that they had been instructed to not make any loans on manufactured homes, no matter how much land was involved.

A neighbor of mine who is 53 years old, wanted to purchase a home in our neighborhood that was for sale for $130,000.  This neighbor had made about $45,000 per year for the past eight years with his current employer.  He is single, and he had just finished paying about $900 per month in child support for the past fifteen years.  If he continued to allocate this $900 per month toward house payments, he could have paid off this house mortgage in fifteen years.  The bank told him no, as if his income and eight year job history at the same company in Dickinson didn’t mean anything, like they were expecting him to lose his job and not be able to get another job.

Another neighbor of mine who is in his forties and single, he has made about $42,000 per year for the past four years with his current employer.  He wanted to buy a house, so he completed a mortgage application with a local bank.  The bank approved him for a mortgage of up to $80,000.  If you go on the internet and use a mortgage calculator, this $80,000 mortgage would have a monthly payment of less than $400 per month.  With a single man having a take-home pay after taxes of $2,700 per month, why would the bank calculate that he could only afford $400 per month on housing?  It’s like the bank didn’t expect him to keep his job, or be able to get another job.

From the three examples above, the local bank lending policies indicate that they don’t expect local people to keep their job, be able to get another job, and the banks don’t want to foreclose on properties in order to sell them to recover the unpaid balance on loans, because these properties will not be worth the unpaid loan amount, and these properties will not sell.

There are people and groups in Dickinson that like to talk about how Dickinson is growing, which isn’t going to happen the way that they say it is.  Dickinson is going to shrink and contract for at least the next several years.  I am tired of hearing about several specific examples of growth and prosperity in Dickinson, which in my opinion, these examples are hoaxes, as they aren’t going to happen any time soon:  the Davis Refinery, the Odyssey Theaters Cinema Complex, and the Dickinson Hills Shopping Center.

I have written about, and explained the proposed Davis Refinery west of Belfield twice before.  The original proposed cost of the Davis Refinery was $900 million, twice the cost of the Dakota Prairie Refinery west of Dickinson which was built by the huge utility company Montana Dakota Utilities.  How was the proposed $900 million Davis Refinery going to be built, by an investor group who had never built a refinery before, who were in fact seeking initial investments to help cover the cost of permitting and planning?  My personal opinion is that the proposed Davis Refinery developers have only raised $10 million to $40 million.

A year or two ago the City of Dickinson sold a public parking lot located behind the U.S. Post Office to Odyssey Theaters, supposedly so that they could build an 8 cinema movie theater complex.  Most people in Dickinson have noticed that there is a shortage of parking downtown, even more so now that the City of Dickinson sold a public parking lot that was almost always full.  Where are the customers of this proposed 8 cinema movie theater complex going to park?  Construction was supposed to start this Spring, meaning now, but I don’t think that construction will start this year.

The developers of the proposed Dickinson Hills Shopping Center asked the City of Dickinson about a year ago if the City would pay for the extension of Fairway Street into their development.  The City agreed to pay for this $1.3 million road extension if the developers could show that they had lease commitments from tenants.  A few months ago the City Attorney Jan Murtha did look over signed lease agreements from Hobby Lobby, T.J. Maxx, Shoe Department Encore, and Dollar Tree.  My opinion, is that although these four tenants signed valid lease agreements, there was no penalty to the developer if they did not move forward with construction.  My opinion, is that the developer wanted the access road into their proposed development, so that they could sell this property, and not move forward with construction at this time.

North Dakota Governor Doug Burgum, his Attorney General Wayne Stenehjem, and Wayne’s cousin Stephen Stenehjem CEO and president of First International Bank & Trust, have all had to deal with embarrassing business fiascoes in Dickinson many times in the past several years:  Dickinson State University awarding degrees to foreign students who did not complete the required curriculum;  the DSU Foundation having to be dissolved and held in receivership to determine what was going on and where the money went;  Hawks Point Assisted Living Facility on the DSU campus failing to repay their loan from First International Bank & Trust;  DSU and the DSU Foundation failing to repay their loans for the construction of the Biesiot Activities Center.

People in Fargo and Bismarck are very aware of the business practices and outcomes in Dickinson, North Dakota.  The Catholics collected and spent over $75 million in Federal grant money and donations to construct a new hospital in Dickinson, shutting down the old hospital.  Many knowledgeable health care employees and residents in Dickinson came to realize that the old hospital that was shut down, had more emergency medical care capabilities, more critical care capabilities, more medical treatment services, and a building with a basement that could withstand a tornado.

Therefore, when a group business people and Dickinson State University people got together and created the Theodore Roosevelt Foundation in order to raise funding to build a Theodore Roosevelt Presidential Library and Museum in Dickinson, the Governor of North Dakota stepped in and stopped that, No Way.  The people in Fargo and Bismarck are fully aware of how the people in Dickinson are.  No way were they going to allow a group of people in Dickinson to collect millions in government grants and donations, obtain construction loans, overpay contractor buddies to perform work, get a substandard inadequate facility, not repay the construction loans, and not be able to account for where all of the money went.

It’s not just the business practices in Dickinson that the rest of the state takes notice of, it’s how the people in Dickinson behave and treat other people.  This is another reason why the Governor of North Dakota intervened to not allow the Theodore Roosevelt Presidential Library and Museum to be built in Dickinson, because of how the visitors would be treated in Dickinson and how the people behave in Dickinson.  Here are some examples:

  • During the oil boom, the people in Dickinson quadrupled the rent that they charged the out-of-state workers.
  • During the oil boom, the people in Dickinson voted to not allow “Man Camp” temporary worker housing in the county to alleviate the housing shortage.
  • Though many, many people in Dickinson received windfall sums of money from oil wells on their property, the people in Dickinson deliberately refused to construct a homeless shelter.  Out-of-state workers who could not afford the quadrupled rent, slept in their cars, underneath bridges, in the bushes along the railroad tracks, on the embankments of drainage ditches, or outside behind the truck stop.
  • When the ratio of men to women in Dickinson was 3:1, the Dickinson Police made a fake advertisement for a woman offering sex on the internet. When a man called to arrange to meet her, the fake woman made up the statement that she was under 18.  The Dickinson Police then tried to charge the man with Commercial Sex Traffic of a Minor, a twenty year sentence, and he never even met the woman.
  • The bars and restaurants in Dickinson hire methamphetamine addict and heroin addict criminal women from Spokane, Seattle, and Coeur D’Alene to work as servers, performing no background checks.
  • The employers in Dickinson hire drug addict felons with multiple convictions, performing no or inadequate background checks.

Because of the end of the oil boom, the population of Dickinson will continue to decrease for years to come.  The people in Dickinson refuse to acknowledge this, and they even point to signs of growth which are actually hoaxes, that will not happen.  The very wealthy successful people like the local bank owners know what is going to happen in Dickinson, and they have practices in place that indicate they expect an out migration.

The Governor of North Dakota, the Attorney General of North Dakota, other wealthy successful people in North Dakota know all about the business practices in Dickinson, the business schemes of the people in Dickinson, what they do with government grant money and donations, how they don’t repay loans, how they are unaccountable for money, how the people in Dickinson treat other people, and how the people in Dickinson behave.  Not only did they intervene to prevent the Theodore Roosevelt Presidential Library and Museum from being built in Dickinson, they wanted to close down the Women’s Correctional Facility in New England, and they will probably seek the closure of Dickinson State University before long.

In the near future, Dickinson will begin to change more toward what New England, Belfield, and Richardton are like.  You don’t understand, this is what the wealthy, successful, influential people in Bismarck and Fargo want.  They do not want Dickinson to grow, they want Dickinson to shrink.  Not only do they not like Dickinson, and do not believe in Dickinson, they don’t want the oil revenue money from western North Dakota being wasted on improving Dickinson.  As far as they are concerned, they would like to see Dickinson as just unimproved grassland, and all of you Dickinson people gone, because you just can’t seem to change and get with the program, you remain backwards.

Card Readers Not Working And Refund Not Given At Lucky’s Tesoro In Dickinson North Dakota

A year ago I began trying to use Lucky’s Tesoro gas station at the corner of Villard Street and 10th Avenue East in Dickinson, North Dakota.  For several consecutive fueling stops at Lucky’s Tesoro, the gas pump card readers would not read my Wells Fargo debit card.  This was very frustrating because my Wells Fargo debit card works absolutely everywhere else, and I didn’t like standing outside in the cold wind at the gas pump, wasting my time inserting my debit card again and again.

I quit trying to use this Lucky’s Tesoro because I could not get their gas pumps to read my debit card.  A month ago, I began trying to use Lucky’s Tesoro again, and I found that one of their gas pumps would accept my debit card.  A couple of weeks ago, my debit card wouldn’t work at Lucky’s Tesoro gas pumps again, but my American Express credit card would work.  A week ago, neither my debit card nor my American Express credit card would work at Lucky’s Tesoro gas pumps, so I went inside and paid cash.

I telephoned the manager of Lucky’s Tesoro in Dickinson, Damien Bearden, and I explained to him that I would like to use this gas station, but it was angering me that the gas pumps would not read my Wells Fargo debit card nor my American Express credit card, when both of these cards work everywhere else.  Part of the reason why I was angry, was because the cashiers at Lucky’s said to me, “No one else has complained that their cards don’t work at the gas pumps”, and I don’t see how this could be true.

A couple of days ago at Lucky’s Tesoro, the card reader at the gas pump wouldn’t read my debit card, so I went inside and I paid the cashier $20 cash for fuel on pump #6.  I went back outside, I pumped 5 cents of gas, and then the gas nozzle would not activate to give me the remaining $19.95 of gas that I had paid for.  I had to go walk back inside the store, talk to the cashier, go walk back out to the pump, try to restart the fuel pump, fiddle with it some more, and it still wouldn’t work.  I was now running late for work, the store cashier was busy with other customers, so I told him I would call Damien Bearden the manager to arrange getting my money back.

On the drive to work, I telephoned Damien the manager of this Lucky’s Tesoro, I explained what had happened, and that I would come back to the store at this same time tomorrow to get $19.95 in gas, or cash back.  Damien said O.K.

The following day I went back to Lucky’s Tesoro, the cashier remembered me, and he knew that I was there for my refund from yesterday.  He said that he had to call Damien, which was a surprise to me, why couldn’t I just get the $19.95 in cash or gas as was agreed upon yesterday when I spoke to Damien?  I heard the cashier’s phone call with Damien, and I was surprised even more when the cashier said to me, “Damien has to call me back.”  I said to the cashier that this was ridiculous, I would wait a few minutes, but why couldn’t I just get $19.95 in cash or gas, why is this such a big deal, you know that I didn’t get the gas that I paid for yesterday.

I wasted a few more minutes waiting, and then I had had enough, I was going to be running late for work again.  I told the cashier to tell Damien that I was going to write an article about everything that had happened,  which at that time they probably could not have cared less, and I left.

I began asking people in Dickinson who owned this Lucky’s Tesoro, and they did not know.  I found one person who did know that many people had had problems with the gas pumps not working at this Lucky’s Tesoro on Villard Street, though the cashiers denied that anyone else besides me had problems with their gas pumps.

I searched on the internet for a while, and I found a Dickinson Press newspaper article from 2016 that was about who owned this Lucky’s Tesoro, it was a local group of investors operating under the name Legacy 7 Group.  In this Dickinson Press newspaper article, they interviewed one of the Legacy 7 Group investors who was acting as their spokesperson, his name was Tim Lantz.  Here is the link to this newspaper article: https://www.thedickinsonpress.com/news/3951277-kum-go-has-new-owners-and-new-name-gas-station-purchased-legacy-7-group

I read some more information on the internet about the Legacy 7 Group and their other Lucky’s gas station in Dickinson.  There are two reviews on the website Yelp which describe an experience similar to mine at Lucky’s Tesoro, here is the link, and the two reviews:  https://www.yelp.com/biz/luckys-tesoro-dickinson-2

“Absolutely the worst Tesoro station I have ever visited, high priced, dirty and service is terrible.  When Don H. Owned this place it was first class and clean.
I was waiting in line for a car wash and they let a guy go ahead of me not very observant at this facility.”  …..from Michael

“I just got ripped off for $14 at the car wash. Absolutely worthless. Lesson learned, I will not be back.” …..from Monica

What do people need to do in order to get their money back from Lucky’s Tesoro in Dickinson?  Do they need to file a small claims case with the court in Dickinson?  Who and where do they serve the small claims notice?  I spent some more time on the internet trying to look up “Legacy 7 Group” in order to find out who was listed as the president of this corporation or owner of this LLC, and their mailing address, but this information did not come up.

I tried to find Tim Lantz’s information, and it appears that Tim’s wife is Dr. Cheryl Lantz, the Nursing Department Chair at Dickinson State University.  I am including the link to Dr. Cheryl Lantz because this gives her phone number and e-mail, so that you can contact her in order to find out where to get the small claims court papers served: https://www.dickinsonstate.edu/about/directory/dr-cheryl-lantz.html

Whoops, Cheryl Lantz changed jobs recently, she is now the executive director at CountryHouse Assisted Living in Dickinson, so this is her new e-mail address: clantz@chresidences.net.

Review Of Los Cabos Family Mexican Restaurant In Dickinson, North Dakota

On Saturday afternoon, when it was windy, cold, and rainy, I helped my neighbor pick up and move some equipment that required two people to carry from his flat bed trailer to some wood pallets that he had set up.  He said thanks, I’ll buy you dinner.  Do you want to go to Buffalo Wild Wings or Sanfords Pub & Grub?  I said either was O.K.  He said lets go at 7:00 p.m.

I didn’t eat anything that afternoon because I was now expecting to eat a large cheeseburger and fries later that night at 7:00 p.m., I was not very hungry, and I was also on a diet.  I spent the rest of the day driving back and forth to hardware stores and working outside on a personal project.

When my neighbor and I left that evening to go eat, he asked me if I had tried the new Mexican restaurant that had taken over where Don Pedros Mexican restaurant used to be.  I said no, I hadn’t tried this new restaurant, but I had liked Don Pedros very much.  He said well this is better than Don Pedros.

This new restaurant is called Los Cabos Family Mexican Restaurant.  It is not a chain or franchise restaurant, it is a family created, owned, and operated restaurant.  It is located on 12th Street West, just down the street from Ace Hardware, across the street from Army’s West.

As soon as we walked in, a very professional and nicely dressed male maitre d’ asked how many were in our party, quickly led us to a booth, and handed us menus.  The restaurant which has two medium size dining areas, was either completely full once we took our seats, or very nearly completely full.  There was one long table with a party of about twenty people adjacent to us, who were all very happy and enjoying themselves.

Next, an assistant waiter immediately brought us some complimentary tortilla chips and salsa to eat while we looked over the menu.  Soon, our waiter came and took our drink order, and he asked us if we needed to take a few more minutes to place our food order.  There were four or five pages of very interesting and appealing entrees to choose from:  beef, chicken, seafood, steak, burritos, enchiladas, fajitias, carne asada, tortas, taco platters, salads, vegetarian options, and more.

I want to emphasize how professional the maitre d, assistant waiter, and waiter were in their dress, manner, alertness, and quickness.  They were all adult men, who were very serious about their job, and the service could not have been better.  This was the best and most professional restaurant staff that I have ever seen in Dickinson.

We ordered two appetizers, the guacamole dip, and the queso dip.  Both were very good, and the assistant waiter had to bring us three or four baskets of tortilla chips, which he did without us having to ask.

I ordered the Steak Maya, which was marinated char-broiled steak accompanied with sauteed onions, mushrooms, jalapenos, pineapples, and sauce, served with four corn or flour tortillas, for $20.  This was very, very good, and though I was hungry now after not having eaten anything all day, I could not finish my entree and I had to take half of it home with me in a to-go box.

My neighbor had some kind of giant burrito dinner platter, and he ate the remainder of the guacamole, queso, and salsa appetizers.  No, I didn’t ask my neighbor to pay for my steak dinner like he offered to do for me helping him earlier, we split the bill which for the two of us was $55 with our drinks, two appetizers, free salsa, and our two entrees.

I would recommend this restaurant to people who are very hungry, who want very quick, attentive service, and large food portions.  I would also recommend this restaurant to families with children, couples on dates, larger groups of people dining together, and even Dan Porter.

Here is a link to this restaurant where you can look at their menu items, appetizers, drinks, prices, daily specials, and hours of operation https://www.loscabosmexican.net/