Hoeven Touts Economic Success and Growth of North Dakota's Technology Sector at 1 Million Cups Fargo

Senator Highlights North Dakota’s UAS Industry as Model for Future Drone Integration Like Recently-Launched FAA Program

FARGO, N.D. – At the third annual 1 Million Cups (1MC) Reunion Fargo, Senator John Hoeven today underscored the importance of North Dakota’s growing technology sector and how entrepreneurs are playing an important role in creating jobs and growing the state’s economy. The senator also highlighted how the relationship between North Dakota and the unmanned aerial systems (UAS) industry has transformed the state into a UAS hub and should serve as a national model as the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) works to integrate UAS into the national airspace (NAS) through its new drone integration program. Hoeven will attend the Drone Focus monthly meetup later today, where he will outline the opportunities of the pilot program, as well as his efforts to secure the state’s role in the FAA’s efforts.

“Innovation is an important reason why North Dakota’s entrepreneurs are increasingly making our state’s economy stronger and more diverse,” Hoeven said. “By building relationships and creating the right legal, tax and regulatory environments to fuel growth, our state has helped to foster innovation and empower our entrepreneurs. Whether through developing new technology like UAS, or by creating new products and services, the work of our local entrepreneurs is growing our state’s technology sector and helping to improve and strengthen our economy.”

Earlier this month, Hoeven joined Transportation Secretary Elaine Chao and FAA Administrator Michael Huerta at an event to mark the launch of FAA’s drone integration pilot program. The senator is committed to setting up a meeting with the FAA and North Dakota UAS leaders – including those from the Northern Plains Test Site and Grand Sky Development Company – to outline the state’s UAS expertise and infrastructure. This will help ensure the FAA utilizes North Dakota’s unique UAS advantages when selecting projects under the new drone integration program.

Since his time as governor, Hoeven has worked to position North Dakota’s technology sector for growth, naming it as one of the state’s five targeted industries. Hoeven continues working through his role on the Senate Appropriations Committee to build a pro-growth business climate for the state’s industries, as well as to work and advocate for the support of Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) education.

In August, Hoeven hosted the seventh annual State of Technology Conference in Fargo to highlight advances throughout the state, and particularly the Red River Valley, in high-tech products and services. This includes developments with unmanned aerial systems (UAS) technology, advancements in carbon capture and sequestration (CCS) projects and the buildout of fiber optic and broadband infrastructure.

1MC Fargo is a local chapter of the national series of events and around 150 individuals and entrepreneurs from the Fargo community attend each week. 1MC Fargo was founded by Emerging Prairie, an entrepreneurial community incubator in Fargo.