Livestock producers might get tax break on bedding materialsPIERRE — It’s now up to Gov. Dennis Daugaard to decide whether livestock producers can sleep any easier about whether their animals’ bedding materials are subject to state taxes in South Dakota.
By: Bob Mercer, Republic Capitol Bureau
PIERRE — It’s now up to Gov. Dennis Daugaard to decide whether livestock producers can sleep any easier about whether their animals’ bedding materials are subject to state taxes in South Dakota.
The state Senate gave final legislative approval Thursday to a sales- and use-tax exemption on straw, corn stover and soybean stubble that is used as bedding for agricultural purposes. The vote was 24-8 in favor of the measure, House Bill 1118. It previously passed in the House of Representatives 52-11 on Feb. 2.
The legislation now heads to the governor for his decision whether it should become law.
Rep. Dennis Feickert, D-Aberdeen, was prime sponsor of the proposed change. Farm Bureau, Farmers Union and Stockgrowers, as well as the dairy and soybean associations, supported it, while the state Revenue Department tried to defeat it.
Senate Democratic leader Jason Frerichs, of Wilmot, said the legislation was stirred up by state tax agents’ contacts with producers last summer.
“Boy, did the phones get to flying, and a lot of people wondering what’s going on,” Frerichs said.
The difference, evidently, is that straw, corn stover and bean stubble can be consumed by livestock, while wood chips aren’t meant for consumption, according to Frerichs.
Silk sheets didn’t come up.