PIERRE — Ann Tornberg and Pam Roberts, the Democratic and Republican chairwomen in South Dakota, would perform a public service by holding a debate. On stage they could highlight the major positions of their respective political parties and educate hundreds of thousands of South Dakotans. To what end? The two major political parties have a common problem. Large numbers of people have registered to vote as members of no party in South Dakota during the past decade.
PIERRE—The Legislature's task force reached agreements Friday on setting boundaries for South Dakota's new river basin natural resources districts. The panel made one specific change merging a piece of one district into three other districts and adopted a general principle for setting the borders between districts. The river basin districts would cover all of South Dakota and each would have a council to develop a water management plan for its area.
PIERRE—The contractor installing South Dakota's new 911 emergency dispatch system has performed better since a July payment was temporarily withheld, members of the state board overseeing the project said Thursday. The company updated software for the Pennington County public service answering point in August, shortly after the South Dakota 911 Coordination Board sent a letter expressing dissatisfaction and refusing to make its $259,067 payment for July services. Board members said the company, NextGen Communications Inc., and its corporate parent, TeleCommunication Systems Inc., of An
PIERRE—Landowner Gary Bussmus of rural Mitchell didn't succeed Wednesday in his attempt to get Firesteel Creek removed from the list of navigable waters in South Dakota. The state Water Management Board voted 6-0 to reject his petition because there wasn't evidence the creek doesn't meet the standard for a navigable stream. State law requires that a stream have sufficient flow from May 1 through Sept.
PIERRE—Two farmers in north-central South Dakota received irrigation permits Wednesday from the state Water Management Board, despite objections from neighbors who raise livestock and wanted to ensure their existing wells are protected. The board approved a permit for one well in McPherson County for Roy Grismer, of rural Bowdle, and two permits for Jeffrey Aman, of rural Hosmer, for one well in McPherson County and one well in Edmunds County. All three would tap into the Grand aquifer. Two livestock producers from the same general area opposed the permits. Rudolph Aman and Cletus Im
PIERRE—Officials from all six state universities will meet next week to discuss whether to try changing South Dakota's prohibition against selling alcohol at the campuses. The task force's findings will be presented in December to the state Board of Regents, whose members will decide then whether to take the issue to the Legislature in January. The university system's council of presidents and superintendents has already talked about the matter. They want discretion to allow alcohol sales on their campuses as another revenue source for campus activities and scholarships, according to
PIERRE — South Dakota's special task force on elder abuse gathers Oct.
PIERRE — Eight days of testimony concluded Friday afternoon on a state permit needed for the Dakota Access oil pipeline to cross South Dakota. The state Public Utilities Commission will make its decision at a special meeting Nov. 30. "This has not been easy for any of us," Chris Nelson said. He is chairman of the three-member regulatory commission. Glenn Boomsma, a lawyer from Sioux Falls, made the only closing statement Friday afternoon.
ABERDEEN—South Dakota State University officials want to charge all students a fee that pays for utilities and bonding costs for student food service facilities. Currently, only students who buy campus meal plans pay the fee. The state Board of Regents gave preliminary approval to the change Thursday.
ABERDEEN—Student debts owed to a state university of $500 or more would be turned over to state government's new obligation recovery center and be subject to the center's surcharge and sanctions, under a change that received preliminary approval Thursday from the South Dakota Board of Regents. All debts sent to the center are to carry an additional 20 percent surcharge as a collection fee. Debtors, while listed on the center's system, also can't obtain or renew driver licenses, vehicle registrations, hunting or fishing licenses, or state park and camping permits. The Legislature, at t