Hurricane Impacts Talks Between Pipeline Company, North Dakota Regulators

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BISMARCK, N.D. (AP) — Hurricane Harvey has impacted the pace of negotiations between the company that built the Dakota Access oil pipeline and North Dakota regulators investigating potential violations of state rules during construction.

Public Service Commissioner Julie Fedorchak says attorney negotiations have continued but Texas-based Energy Transfer Partners also has been busy with hurricane response.

ETP is based in Dallas but has facilities on the Gulf Coast. The company said it dedicated about 1,000 employees to a hurricane response team.

North Dakota alleges ETP improperly reported the discovery of American Indian artifacts. The state also is looking into whether crews removed too many trees and improperly handled some soil while laying pipe in the state. Both are potentially finable offenses.

The PSC said Wednesday it’s too early to know when negotiations might conclude.