The protest over the building of a pipeline in north dakota has went on for months. The group started out as peaceful protesters who called themselves “water protectors” because they believed the oil pipeline would contaminate the water supply they depend on. The stand-off soon became violent as more and more protesters arrived to support the Sioux that lived near the construction area.

Controversy and riots costs North Dakota money

The Washington Times stated that the standing rock dispute has cost North Dakota more than 22 million dollars in the past six months.

Police and emergency workers have spent long hours on the clock, among many other expenses. It appears as North Dakota will spend even more money as the protest continues.

Tax Commissioner Ryan Rauschenberger has been talking to legislators about the possibility of enforcing a tax, as he believes many of the protestors are being paid. Since they are earning a pay for being in North Dakota, he believes that they should be subject to filing a tax return and paying the state for being there.

More than 30 environmental organizations have showed their support of Standing Rock and countless money has been raised by Go Fund Me accounts and donations. Rauschenberger believes that these organizations have paid personnel on site.

If that is the case, then he wants them to file their W-2s or 1099s with the state of North Dakota.

The state did ask for federal aid from the Obama administration several times but never received anything, so now they want paid protestors to file taxes. People who raised money through Go Fund Me accounts or anything similar would be subject to filing taxes, because they were paid by other people to go preform a service (protest) in North Dakota.

Standing Rock still standing their ground

The Dakota Access pipeline dispute will continue to cost North Dakota money, as many of the water protectors have said they will not leave, even though President Trump has granted permission for the pipeline to proceed. The Sioux tribe has however, asked that many of the protestors leave. They claim some protestors came with their own agendas and are ruining the land they are working so hard to protect.