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Siouxland Public Media News, 5:32, 03.29.19

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President Donald Trump has issued a new presidential permit allowing construction of the Keystone XL oil pipeline, two years after he first approved the long-stalled project.

The permit issued today replaces one granted in March 2017. It is intended to speed up development of the controversial pipeline, which would ship crude oil from tar sands in western Canada to the U.S. Gulf Coast.

A federal judge blocked the project in November, saying the Trump administration had not fully considered potential oil spills and other impacts. Judge Brian Morris ordered a new environmental review.

An appeal filed by the project's developer, Calgary-based TransCanada, is pending.

Governor Kim Reynolds is putting off appointing permanent leaders to the Departments of Natural Resources and Corrections, leaving in place acting directors. The positions require Senate confirmation. Now that a key deadline has passed, legislative staff says lawmakers won’t be able to confirm nominees until next session.

Reynolds’ spokesman Pat Garrett says she’s taking her time making the decisions.

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“Well again, I think that it’s about getting the right people, the right people for the right position. And so I think she’s taking a lot of time to make sure she does that properly. It’s not something you want to rush into.”

The D-O-C has had an interim director for about three months. The acting director of the D-N-R has been in place for nearly eleven months.

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