Governor vetoes bill to increase Deadwood tax
By Nora Hertel
PIERRE (AP) — South Dakota Gov. Dennis Daugaard vetoed a bill Tuesday that would have increased the hotel tax in Deadwood.
The bill would have allowed municipalities to tax $3 per night. The current rate is $2.
The increase would have brought in about $240,000 a year for marketing and promotions.
In a statement, the governor said it would be a mistake to make it easier for local governments to raise taxes. He said local officials can already increase tax revenue with the property tax opt-out.
The bill passed the House and Senate with narrow margins. Supporters said the change was necessary to support struggling communities. Opponents argued against a tax increase.
The main sponsor of the bill, Sen. Bob Ewing, said Tuesday that he knew there was a risk the bill would be vetoed because it raised a tax.
"I still think it's a very minor raise," the Republican from Spearfish said. He said it's a self-imposed tax and low compared with neighboring states.
Ewing hopes to override the veto with a two-thirds vote in both chambers, even though the votes have been close.
He said, "I'll do my best to try to convince everyone that it's worthwhile."