PIERRE — Christmas week brings so many joys, especially for folks who love sweet treats, rich meats, aged cheeses, and hot drinks. The bakers and the cooks, the generations-old family recipes, the real butter. The unexpected delights, such as a true fruitcake, so packed with nuts and dates and preserved cherries and pineapple you have to lean hard on the butcher knife to cut a slice. The best fruitcake I've ever had — and no, this is not a joke—arrived at our house a few days ago.
PIERRE— A lawyer for Dakota Access oil pipeline filed a confidentiality agreement Thursday over the source of electricity for its pump station in Spink County. The company wants NorthWestern Energy to supply the power but needs permission from the state Public Utilities Commission. That's because the pump station is within the state-assigned territory for Northern Electric Cooperative. Dakota Access is seeking what's known as a service territory exception.
PIERRE – The complicated fight over using Firesteel Creek in Davison County for recreational boating and snowmobiling took another twist Monday. The Legislature’s Rules Review Committee decided fences across the...
PIERRE — State Auditor General Marty Guindon said Monday he is using a special law for the first time as part of the financial probe into the GEAR UP program. The law authorizes the auditor general to "examine all financial records, related to funds provided by the state or its political subdivisions, of any charitable or nonprofit corporation if deemed necessary and in the public interest by the auditor-general." That means the audit can look at organizations that received GEAR UP funding from Mid Central Education Cooperative at Platte. That could be significant because two of the m
PIERRE—The state Game, Fish and Parks Department sees more winter wheat as a way to produce more pheasants in South Dakota. That's one of the new recommendations made by GF&P upland game biologists in their proposed update to the department's pheasant management plan. A recent study found winter wheat fields were as effective as idle grasslands for pheasant nesting areas. GF&P officials and other wildlife advocates increasingly expressed concerns in the past decade as farmers began growing crops on tens of thousands of acres that had been idled in the federal Conservation Reserve Prog
PIERRE—Officially, Mike Vehle is retired. Hardly. Now heading toward age 66 come Nov. 17, the Mitchell Republican has invested the last 11 years of his life serving as a South Dakota legislator. He grew up in the grain business and understands that crucial South Dakota facility called a country elevator.
PIERRE—The avian flu that shut down some poultry farms in South Dakota this spring could be a threat again this fall, when temperatures cool and waterfowl make their southern migration back from Canada, the state's top animal health official said Tuesday. South Dakota hasn't seen a new outbreak of avian flu since May 28, but the virus remains active for 180 to 210 days, including at fields and ponds where wild birds stop and feed, State Veterinarian Dustin Oedekoven said. He told members of the state Animal Industry Board that their May 20 ban against poultry exhibitions, such as at 4-
PIERRE—With Obamacare in place, state government is winding down a medical risk pool that began more than a decade ago for South Dakotans who wanted to buy health insurance but whose conditions deterred companies from covering them. About $2.4 million of cash is expected to remain in the risk pool after all final claims are paid.
PIERRE—The state Board of Elections meets Thursday to discuss procedures regarding Help America Vote Act federal grants and to consider rule changes for South Dakota local elections. But one big set of matters won't be part of the public hearing: The potential changes in South Dakota's requirements for when and how candidates qualify for the ballot. Those changes made by the Legislature's Republicans during the 2015 session are facing a petition drive right now. If sufficient valid signatures are collected from registered South Dakota voters—13,871 at a minimum—and submitt
PIERRE — Members of the state Aeronautics Commission expressed their interest Tuesday in establishing a loan fund to assist projects that otherwise don’t qualify for federal aid at South Dakota...