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LETTER: Gant: Time to switch gears

To the Editor:

After careful thought and consideration, I have decided not to seek another term as your secretary of state, and am looking forward to returning to the private sector when my term ends.

When I campaigned for this office, I detailed very specific goals to accomplish if elected. I promised to create an online corporate filing system, more open records online and increase transparency to campaign finance and to increase access to the voting booth. I have met and exceeded my goals and am confident that the next secretary of state will inherit the government agency is at the forefront of technology.

My proudest accomplishment has been the creation and implementation of vote centers. This revolutionary change to our election system is breaking down barriers while cutting costs. Creating the opportunity for people to vote anywhere allows for greater participation in our democratic process while increasing the security of our ballot.

I have been a vocal proponent of open government initiatives. As secretary of state, I have made the campaign finance system searchable by donor and candidate, as well as opened file cabinets and posted those records online for public inspection.

South Dakota businesses are benefiting from our new online filing system. Through the implementation of this user-friendly filing system, businesses have saved time and resources. This initiative was only possible by managing a government agency like a business.

I am far from perfect, but I have always tried to do my best and serve the people of South Dakota well. Tremendous improvements have been made in the secretary of state's office with more to come. I may not be seeking another term; however, my drive and determination are as strong as ever.

Over the next year and a half, I will roll out an elections app for your phone and tablet, launch the most innovative military voting system in the country and continue to promote South Dakota as open for business.

My mission is clear and my focus is on target to continue to serve South Dakota.