MDU Purchases Share of Black Hills Power

MDU Resources Group, Inc. (NYSE:MDU) announced today that its utility division purchased a share of a Wyoming power plant. Montana-Dakota Utilities Co. signed a purchase agreement with Black Hills Power for a 25 percent ownership interest in the Wygen III power generation facility. The coal-fired plant is under construction near Gillette, Wyo., and will have a net production of 100 megawatts.

"This agreement provides our electric customers in Wyoming an economic base load source of electric generation," said MDU Resources Group president and chief executive officer Terry D. Hildestad. "This will replace a portion of the purchase power agreement currently in place."

Montana-Dakota will own 25 MW of the plant, which is scheduled to be completed and online in June 2010. Montana-Dakota's current purchase power agreement is also with Black Hills Power.

"Our purchase of an interest in the Wygen III facility will benefit our electric customers by providing them with competitively priced energy for years to come," said David L. Goodin, president and chief executive officer of Montana-Dakota Utilities.

Montana-Dakota has approximately 14,800 electric customers in northeast Wyoming.

NAM Members Oppose Card Check

A delegation of approximately 50 corporate chief executive officers and senior corporate staff, all members of the National Association of Manufacturers (NAM), have urged Senators and Members of the House to oppose the Employee Free Choice Act (EFCA), generally known as “card check.”

“This is the most unifying issue for business right now,” said NAM President and Chief Executive Officer John Engler. “These business leaders have come to Washington to make it clear they oppose proposals that will further hinder manufacturers’ economic competitiveness and our ability to create jobs.”

Read more: NAM Members Oppose Card Check

CHS Reports Record - $803 million

CHS Inc., reported a record net income of $803 million for fiscal 2008.

The earnings for the 12 months ending Aug. 31, 2008, compared with net income of $756.7 million for fiscal 2007 (Sept. 1, 2006 - Aug. 31, 2007).

Revenues for fiscal 2008 were $32.2 billion, also a record, and were up 87 percent over $17.2 billion for fiscal 2007. The increase in revenues was largely attributed to higher values for the energy, grains, crop nutrients and other commodities the company handles.

Read more: CHS Reports Record - $803 million

Kamut Increases World Sales

Despite tough economic conditions and drastic increases in contract crop prices, Kamut Khorasan wheat and flour sales increased over 5 percent in 2008, according to Great Falls, MT-based Kamut International. The largest increase in purchases came from Europe (6.4 percent) with 0.2 percent in the U.S. Italy alone accounted for more than two thirds (71 percent) of all European sales. Kamut Khorasan wheat may only be grown organically.

Kamut International will exhibit at the Natural Product Expo West March 5-8 in Anaheim, CA and will be exhibiting at the Canadian Health Food Association Expo West April 3-5 in Vancouver, BC and will attend the Whole Grains Council Conference April 20-22 in Alexandria, VA.

Read more: Kamut Increases World Sales

How Montana Stacks Up Among States for Friendliness to Entrepreneurs

Want to start a business some place that will most welcome your enterprising efforts?

Go to South Dakota.

Whatever you do, don’t go to New Jersey or California.

As for Montana? It ranks 33rd in terms of entrepreneurship viability, which means one-third of the states in the nation are more welcoming to small business survivability than is Montana – that at least is the conclusion of the Small Business & Entrepreneurship Council’s (SBEC) Small Business Survival Index for 2008.

Read more: How Montana Stacks Up Among States for Friendliness to Entrepreneurs

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