South Dakota State University officials can move forward with an estimated $55 million of agricultural projects, state government's Board of Regents said Thursday. SDSU plans to construct a new center for precision agriculture and to renovate the first and second floors of Berg Ag Hall on the Brookings campus. The funding plan calls for gradually paying off $31.5 million of bonds from money that Barry Dunn said was originally earmarked for agriculture-property tax relief. Dunn is university president.
The University of South Dakota completed the DakotaDome in 1979. Now it's time for a renovation. State government's Board of Regents gave initial approval Thursday to spending $26.3 million to fix up the closed-roof athletic facility on Vermillion's north side. "It's pretty evident," Sheila Gestring said about the need for the update. She is the university's chief financial officer.
Northern State University in Aberdeen received the go-ahead Thursday to construct a football-practice field, a soccer field and a pavilion between them. That was just the first course of a much bigger meal. State government's Board of Regents also gave Northern State the green light to start planning three other projects that would significantly alter the layout of the campus. One is a new $13.6 million complex that would replace the current School for the Blind and Visually Impaired. It would be built at the current site of Jerde Hall.
State government's Board of Regents received a report Wednesday on the future of Capital University Center in Pierre. Janelle Toman said officials representing the center are considering two options. She is communications director for the regents system. One approach is a "teach-out" of current students and closing the center after receiving approval from the regents, according to Toman. The other is continuing "some level" of operations with cooperation from the CUC foundation, she said.
Without high school students taking dual credit courses in recent years, South Dakota's public universities would have seen resident headcounts fall by more than 5,300 since 2010, according to a report discussed Tuesday by state government's Board of Regents. The report said there were 291 high school students and 36,149 other students in the universities system in fall 2010. This fall there were 3,035 high school students and 33,627 other students.
PIERRE — Secretary of State Shantel Krebs has told a federal panel it can buy the list of South Dakota registered voters for the same $2,500 that any person would pay. Krebs sent a data-request form for the list with her Sept. 29, 2017, letter responding to the Presidential Advisory Commission on Election Integrity. Her reply went directly to the commission vice chairman, Kansas Secretary of State Kris Kobach.
More than 100 Medicaid recipients in South Dakota received opioid prescriptions from April 1 to July 31 that were at least six times higher than the maximum recommended by the federal government, according to data Friday. Medicaid is a health care program jointly funded by the state and federal governments. The federal Center for Disease Control and Prevention is telling medical professionals to use caution when prescribing opioids at any dosage.
PIERRE — South Dakota's second grant for the GEAR UP program runs out in late September 2018. There aren't plans to apply for a third grant from the federal government, according to Peggy Diekhoff. That might be too bad. During the hour spent with her at the Indian education conference, first in conversation and then watching the Tuesday presentation she and Murray Lee made, they seemed like the kind of people South Dakota should have always had leading GEAR UP.
A housing development in rural Lawrence County that once wanted to hook onto the Lead-Deadwood sanitary district now intends to proceed on its own. Powder House Pass community improvement district won approval Friday for an additional loan from state government's panel that oversees financial packages for water projects. The South Dakota Board of Water and Natural Resources agreed to lend $2,060,000 to Powder House Pass for construction of a wastewater treatment system.
Balcon Enterprises Inc., the only company in South Dakota that makes Gaylord-style corrugated boxes for bulk products, received approval Friday for a state government loan. The South Dakota Board of Water and Natural Resources gave the green light to a $954,213 loan. Terms are 20 years at 2.25 percent interest. The money comes from the board's solid-waste management fund. Kevin Connelly said the Elk Point-based firm could double its floor space to 20,000 square feet and install a heating system that runs on secondhand oil.