PIERRE—State government officials showed on Thursday some of the tools they now are using to better assess risks when awarding public money for grants and contracts. One checklist helps detect conflicts of interest. Another helps determine whether a person is a contractor or a grant sub-recipient. That distinction is important in deciding the responsibilities that accompany the money. They are part of a new emphasis by Gov. Dennis Daugaard's administration and the Legislature on internal controls within the state government.
PIERRE — The successor to Executive Director Wayne Carney should be picked by March 1, the board of directors for the South Dakota High School Activities Association agreed Thursday. The application period opens on or about Sept. 15 and will run through October. Brian Maher, the superintendent for the Sioux Falls School District and an SDHSAA director, will coordinate the search.
PIERRE — The South Dakota High School Activities Association directors restructured the organization's finance committee Thursday so it would be only advisory in the future and won't stand as a semi-independent body. The change passed unanimously Thursday. The decision came after a floor vote at the annual meeting in April. School districts with representatives in attendance forbid the board, on a vote of 28-5, from putting spare ongoing revenue into the association's trust fund. Three directors will have seats on the reformed committee.
AVON – People packed the bleachers shoulder to shoulder on one side of the school gym and filled dozens of folding chairs for a meeting Wednesday night about a project...
PIERRE — Several directors for the South Dakota High School Activities Association said Wednesday they don't like school representatives voting on policies at the association's annual meetings. The discussion came on the heels of a 26-5 vote at the annual meeting last April. School representatives blocked the directors from going ahead with a plan to transfer some of the ongoing revenue received by the association, including corporate sponsorships, and invest it in the association's foundation.
PIERRE—Direct shipments of wine to South Dakota consumers became legal Jan. 1 and they've quickly become popular. So popular, in fact, that some people have already exceeded their annual maximum of 12 cases. That's according to Jason Evans, a deputy director for the state Department of Revenue. He presented a report Tuesday to the Legislature's Government Operations and Audit Committee. He said tax collections during 2016's first two quarters exceeded $38,000. At that pace, the amount would be very close to the annual estimate he provided to legislators.
PIERRE — The Legislature's oversight panel wants an anonymous survey of South Dakota Developmental Center employees at Redfield. The decision Tuesday comes in the wake of a field hearing and tour at the institution by legislators on June 20. That had followed a tense meeting Jan. 25 during the 2016 legislative session when lawmakers received complaints from former employees. Jan Banghart subsequently resigned as the center's director Feb. 8. To cover the vacancy, Barb Abeln served as the interim director. She is a long-time member of the Redfield staff.
PIERRE — The story dates to Bill Janklow's fourth term as governor. One winter afternoon, an aide received a call asking for a meeting upstairs with two of the state Senate's Republican leaders. Harold Halverson of Milbank and Mike Rounds of Pierre wanted a message taken back to the governor on the second floor. They wouldn't allow a tax increase on Deadwood casinos to get through the Senate. They weren't going to put Jim Dunn of Lead, their friend and fellow Republican leader, in that difficult spot.
PIERRE — Mike Williams and his crews at Dakota Southern railroad passed a big test. By repairing and cleaning up the state-owned line west from Mitchell that his company leases, they won back the confidence of the South Dakota Railroad Board. Todd Yeaton, the board's chairman from Highmore, manages the grain elevator outside Kimball that depends on the line. At a meeting Wednesday, with the other board members alongside or listening by telephone, Yeaton congratulated Williams. "I think I speak for the board, I didn't think you were going to do it," Yeaton said.
PIERRE — The ethanol plant planned at Onida received approval for an air-quality permit Thursday. The state Board of Minerals and Environment voted 6-1 to grant the permit sought by Ring Neck Energy and Feed. The permit sets emission limits. Two Onida residents, Clark Guthmiller and Kathy Hyde, asked the board to deny the permit or at least require that air-dispersion modeling be conducted before reaching a decision. Guthmiller said he was willing to pay for the modeling.