The North Dakota town at the epicenter of the Bakken shale boom adopted the biggest budget in its history and five times bigger than its budget just four years ago.

Williston’s city commission last week set the budget for 2015 at $250 million, up $39 million from a year ago.

The city’s population is now about 50,000, according to an estimate by former Mayor Ward Koeser. The census bureau said the 2013 population was just under 30,000. And the 2010 census recorded only 14,716 residents.

Williston’s budget in 2011 was $50 million and in 2000 was just $20 million.

“Roads account for $86 million of the 2015 allocations. Another $48 million is appropriated for sewer and water,” AP said.

And $46.5 million of the proposed budget will go toward paying down Williston’s $140 million debt, most of which help fund  infrastructure projects.

Fargo is North Dakota’s biggest city with 100,000 people. Its budget for 2015 is likely to be about $282 million.

Williston Mayor Howard Klug expects his city to have a bigger share of the state’s oil revenues but that isn’t guaranteed.

“We don’t want to miss another construction season waiting for the oil formula,” said Klug.


Leave a Reply