North Dakota lawmakers don't want the state's community banks left out in the cold when it comes to home lending. That could have bankers in other states casting a jealous eye toward their brethren up north.

The state's legislature is close to giving the state-owned Bank of North Dakota authority to originate and service millions of dollars in residential mortgage loans on behalf of small banks and credit unions. Many banks in rural North Dakota have all but stopped making mortgages because of high regulatory costs.

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