PIERRE—South Dakota could know by summer whether Gov. Dennis Daugaard will call a special session of the Legislature on expanding Medicaid eligibility. A member of the governor's Cabinet described the expansion preparation Monday as moving "full speed ahead." Social Services Secretary Lynne Valenti said five teams of tribal, state and federal government officials are working with healthcare providers on the operational plans She provided an update to members of the state Board of Social Services.
PIERRE — The attorney general knew months before the Platte killings on Sept. 17 that Mid-Central Educational Cooperative was under government scrutiny. He was told in a telephone conversation with...
BROOKINGS — A comprehensive approach to land acquisition for public use in South Dakota is coming to the state Game, Fish and Parks Department, according to the agency's top official. Secretary Kelly Hepler said Friday he wants the policy developed to cover the parks division, too. He told the Game, Fish and Parks Commission he wants a department-wide policy for analyzing needs and opportunities. Hepler's remarks came after the commission received a presentation about the policy and process developed by the Wildlife Division.
BROOKINGS – A pheasant management plan for the next five years in South Dakota received approval Friday from the state Game, Fish and Parks Commission. Commission members John Cooper of...
PIERRE—Video lottery establishments and city governments throughout South Dakota should be sent an official letter reinforcing the ban against smoking in those businesses, the state Lottery Commission decided Thursday. The commission's 7-0 vote came after a telephone conference with several people from Sioux Falls city government. Sioux Falls city attorney Keith Allenstein detailed several years of attempting to enforce the smoking ban in some of the video lottery casinos there.
BROOKINGS—People could keep trail cameras operating year-round in South Dakota on land owned, leased or controlled by the state Game, Fish and Parks Department under a new rule adopted Thursday. The regulations call for the camera to be attached to a tree, post or structure by no more than one nail, bolt or screw. The camera must have attached the name and address of the owner or the year and current big-game license number. The state Game, Fish and Parks Commission voted 6-2. The discussion turned on the concept of fair chase.
PIERRE—Trustees for the South Dakota Retirement System learned Wednesday its investments currently don't cover what its members are owed. This is the fourth time since 2009 that a deficit faced the public pension system. Among its participating units are state government, state universities and many school districts, counties, cities and other units of local government. SDRS is structured to balance on annual average investment gains of 7.25 percent.
PIERRE—South Dakota schools hired less than 38 percent of the first-year teachers graduated from South Dakota's state universities during 2002 through 2014. That's one of the trends identified in a report to the state Board of Regents, whose members govern the state universities. The first-year placements increased substantially the past few years, however, reaching 47.5 percent for 2013 and 48.1 percent for 2014.
PIERRE—Twenty of South Dakota's 35 legislative districts will have contests in the June 7 political primary elections, including six districts with two sets of primaries each. Republicans have 12 primaries for their party's House of Representatives candidates and 10 primaries for their party's Senate candidates. Five of those districts have Republican primaries for House and Senate candidates. Democrats, by contrast, have four districts with primaries, three for House candidates and one for Senate.
PIERRE — The time is nigh to explain some talk and contradictions that came from the 2016 session of the Legislature that ended Tuesday. Sales tax: No, the Republican opponents didn't have a no-tax alternative to the governor's increase from 4 percent to 4.5 percent. School funding: No, the new formula won't dry up small-enrollment school districts. If you're shrinking, you need more babies and more couples to have babies. Video lottery: No, lottery money wasn't meant for education. Twenty years ago, video lottery proceeds were earmarked for property tax relief.