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Published February 21, 2012, 10:25 PM

GF City Council Approves New Turf For Alerus Center

GRAND FORKS (WDAZ-TV) - The Grand Forks City Council has approved the $3.8 million turf project for the Alerus Center.

GRAND FORKS (WDAZ-TV) - The Grand Forks City Council has approved the $3.8 million turf project for the Alerus Center.

After a lengthy debate Tuesday night the council approved the plan with a five to one vote.

The University of North Dakota will contribute $2 million over ten years. UND will have a minimum payment of $100,000 each year and the remaining one million can be paid at the university's discretion.

Council needed to make the decision Tuesday night so the project can be complete by the start of the season.

But some council members wanted the Alerus Center Commission to do more number-crunching.

"Businesses use a lot of numbers. You have to be really smart with your money. You can't just say 'okay well it's better this way than that way.' You should have numbers so you can show people what it means. You can back up your decision making," Grand Forks City Council Member Tyrone Grandstrand said.

"I'm very, very comfortable with this arrangement and taking care of our most important tenant. And I think Mr. Christensen said it so well. It's our university. It's our Alerus Center. We're in it together. So we work together," Grand Forks City Council President Hal Gershman said.

The council wants the agreement with UND signed within six weeks. The new agreement also extends the university's agreement to use the Alerus Center to match the 10 year payment period.

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