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Sweetman, McCahren leave mining board after four decades

PIERRE — More than 40 years after then-Gov. Dick Kneip appointed them, the last two original members have retired from one of South Dakota's most important environmental boards.

Richard Sweetman, of Sioux Falls, and Lee McCahren, of Vermillion, stepped down recently from the state Board of Minerals and Environment.

The board regulates mining, oil and gas activities in South Dakota and is responsible for a variety of environmental regulations.

Kneip appointed them in August 1973 to the then-new Board of Environmental Protection.

The name was changed in 1979 as part of a government reorganization.

Sweetman is a businessman with decades of experience in construction and raw-materials mining. McCahren is a lawyer.

They formed the hub of the board's leadership for four decades with Sweetman as the long-time chairman.

As their successors Gov. Dennis Daugaard appointed Daryl Englund, of Brookings, and Gregg Greenfield, of Sioux Falls.

Englund is a retired president of the Banner Associates engineering and architectural firm.

Greenfield is a lawyer with extensive experience in water project development. He served from 1996 through 2004 on the state Board of Water and Natural Resources.

Their terms took effect July 7 and continue until June 30, 2018.

They are the fourth and fifth new appointments that Daugaard has made to the nine-member board since he took office in 2011.

McCahren was able to participate in the board's Feb. 20 meeting. He didn't take part in the April or May meetings.

"Lee has had health problems and Dick felt it was time to step aside as well," said Tony Venhuizen, a spokesman for the governor.

Other board members are Rex Hagg of Rapid City; Pete Bullene of Watertown; Glenn Blumhardt of Bowdle; Linda Hilde of Madison; Dennis Landguth of Rapid City; Bob Morris of Belle Fourche; and Doyle Karpen of Jefferson.

The board's next meeting now is set for Aug. 21.