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House approves repealing direct electronic recording

PIERRE — Despite some lawmakers leaving early, 59 representatives happened to still be in the House on Friday afternoon when Rep. Nancy York stood to talk.

She explained what's behind changes sought for parts of South Dakota's election laws.

York, R-Watertown, said election officials in different states are backing away from direct electronic recording of votes.

South Dakota law allows it but it hasn't been used.

Security of a person's ballot is the main reason.

HB 1013 would repeal references to direct electronic recording from state law, she said.

The state Board of Elections doesn't want someone to attempt it in the future. The board, chaired by Secretary of State Shantel Krebs, brought the measure.

"Any questions?" York asked.

No other House member stood up.

"Easy day," remarked Rep. Steven Haugaard, R-Sioux Falls. He was presiding for the afternoon as House speaker pro tem.

House members voted 59-0 for HB 1013. The measure now moves to the Senate for a committee hearing.

Unanimous choices

On Friday the Senate confirmed the three most-recent nominees to the state Board of Economic Development.

Jeff Erickson, of Sioux Falls; Dale Clement, of Rapid City; and Michael Luken, of Watertown, will continue serving on the board until April 19, 2021.

All are current members. Gov. Dennis Daugaard nominated them to new terms.

However, none attended confirmation hearings held Thursday by the Senate Commerce and Energy Committee.

Commissioner Scott Stern from the Governor's Office of Economic Development represented them instead.

Gov. George S. Mickelson established the board in 1987.

The main responsibility for the 13 voting members is deciding if business projects get low-interest loans from the state's Revolving Economic Development Initiative fund.

The board also makes decisions for various grants established by the Legislature in 2013 under the Building South Dakota programs.

Up to 69

House members rose by one to 69 Wednesday, as Rep. Sean McPherson, R-Rapid City, returned.

Health reasons kept McPherson away during the previous five working days of the 2018 session.

So far Rep. Karen Soli, D-Sioux Falls, hasn't been able to attend. She is receiving cancer treatment.

More bills

As of Saturday morning, total House and Senate bills climbed past the 200 mark.

There are 112 in the House so far, while the Senate has 99.

As for proposed constitutional amendments, there are two in the House and two in the Senate.

Visit sdlegislature.gov for the list.

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