PIERRE, S.D. — An amended bill that would prohibit commercial surrogacy and establish an interim legislative committee to study and evaluate surrogacy passed through the South Dakota House of Representatives on a 46-20 vote on Thursday, Feb. 6.

The amended bill will go on to be assigned to a Senate committee.

Lawmakers first tabled an amendment that would establish an interim legislative committee to study and evaluate surrogacy in South Dakota in lieu of legislation that would ban commercial surrogacy altogether in the state.

However, a new amendment that would criminalize commercial surrogacy and establish an interim legislative committee was proposed by state Rep. Drew Dennert, R-Aberdeen, and was adopted by a vote of 46-21.

Another amendment was proposed by state Rep. Jess Olson, R-Rapid City, that would prolong the bill, if passed, from going into effect until July 2021.

HB 1096’s prime sponsor, state Rep. Jon Hansen, R-Dell Rapids, spoke in opposition of Olson’s amendment, saying that he wants to see the bill be enacted into law as soon as possible.

Olson’s amendment failed with a 29-38 vote.

The amendments were announced during a hearing on House Bill 1096 on Thursday.

According to the text in HB 1096, “any broker who knowingly engages in, advertises services for, offers payment of money or other consideration for, profits from, solicits a woman for, or otherwise assists or participates in commercial surrogacy” would be guilty of a Class 1 misdemeanor.

The bill would also make any commercial surrogacy contract, whether the two parties entered into it in South Dakota or any other state, unenforceable and void in South Dakota.