LETTER: Value of educational trust fund needs examining

(Metro Creative)

To the Editor:

The total value of the Education Trust Fund with the state of South Dakota, as of June 30, 2019, was $621 million. A certain percentage of this is sent to the state’s General Fund each year. This does not mean it has to be used for K-12 education.

I am asking our legislators to do the following: There are approximately 10,000 teachers in South Dakota. If each of those 10,000 teachers would receive a $1,000 raise, it would amount to $10 million out of the $621,000,000 Education Trust Fund. Administrators would not qualify for the extra $1,000.

In my opinion, the Education Trust Fund does not need to have a more than $600 million balance.

Here are the state’s notable trust fund asset amounts, as of June 30, 2019: South Dakota Retirement System, $12.4 billion; Health Care Trust Fund, $150.3 million; Education Enhancement Trust Fund: $621.2 million; School and Public Lands Fund, $316.5 million; Dakota Cement Trust Fund, $332.1 million.


Along with the state’s cash holdings, they total more than $15 billion in assets.

Roger Hofer


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