Bills on the SD House floor for Tues Mar 1

SD House floor. Photo by Ken Santema 2/18/16.
SD House floor. Photo by Ken Santema 2/18/16.

Here are the bills on the House floor for Tuesday, March 1, which begins at 2:00 PM central. This is compiled using the calendar at the time of composing this post. Agendas can and do change!

The House Floor video can be viewed live on the SDPB YouTube channel. Previous recordings can also be viewed there.

*** There were some style and form issues with the posted agenda, so hopefully the actual content of the agenda was fine!

MOTIONS AND RESOLUTIONS (the top of the agenda didn’t say motions, or what these two bills were here for, but I’m assuming it is a motion to consider amendments to the following bills)

HB 1119 (SoDakLiberty Posts) – Revise the criteria for incorporation of a new municipality.

SoDakLiberty Stance: Not Opposed
Prime Sponsors: Rep Thomas Brunner (R, Dist 29) and Sen Bob Ewing (R, Dist 31) are the prime sponsors.

*** The House going to have to decide whether to accept amendment made in the Senate.

There was some resistance to this bill on the House floor, where it passed 48-20.

This had a hoghouse amendment in House Local Government. The hoghouse appears to do the same thing.

The purpose of the bill is to revise the terms under which a new municipality can be created. This comes about because of the situation in Buffalo Chip. This bill will not impact Buffalo Chip, only situations going forward. This law passing should mean a commercial campground wishing to become a town won’t be able to do what Buffalo Chip did.

The Senate Floor amended the bill to ensure that the 90 residency requirement was in one years time, and not into infinity.

I don’t see why the House would have a problem with that amendment.

HB 1208 (SoDakLiberty Posts) – Provide for the sale of certain surplus real estate at the South Dakota Developmental Centers and to provide for the deposit of the proceeds.

SoDakLiberty Stance: Not Opposed
Prime Sponsors: The Committee on State Affairs is the prime sponsor at the request of the Office of the Governor.

*** The House going to have to decide whether to accept amendment made in Senate Appropriations.

This bill would allow the state to sell land currently in the control of the South Dakota Developmental Centers, including possibly selling land the to be demolished buildings are on. The sale of that land will be used for the South Dakota Developmental Center (SDDC).

This was amended on the House floor. Originally the sale money would all go to the SDDC. That money would still go to the SDDC, but it would be “less any expense associated with the sale including advertising, appraisal fees, surveying costs, and demolition expenses”.

The amended bill made it through the House without a No vote.

Senate Appropriations further amended the bill to separate out the dollars so some of the money goes back to the general fund because of the difference between the land that is in trust and land that isn’t.

I wouldn’t think the House would have a problem concurring with the Senate amendments to the bill.

SECOND READING OF CONSENT CALENDAR ITEMS

SB 1 (SoDakLiberty Posts) – Revise certain provisions regarding the Executive Board of the Legislative Research Council.

SoDakLiberty Stance: Not Opposed
Prime Sponsors: Sen Corey Brown (R, Dist 23) and Rep Dean Wink (R, Dist 29) are the prime sponsors on behalf of the Executive Board of the Legislative Research Council.

This bill is necessary because leadership keeps leaving the legislature mid-term. Right now there isn’t a way to replaced the president pro tempore on that board if that person resigns the legislature during the interim session. The bill also changes the terms of the Executive board to align with session. Finally the bill specifies the Exec Board is in charge of the Director, then the Director actually oversees the LRC staff.

This passed the Senate floor 25-6.

SB 6 (SoDakLiberty Posts) – Revise certain performance security requirements for public improvement contracts.

SoDakLiberty Stance: Not Opposed
Prime Sponsors: The Committee on State Affairs is the prime sponsor at the request of the Bureau of Administration.

This bill would change the security bond requirements for contractors the state hires for projects. The bill removes a statute that is in conflict with another statute. The bill also allows the security bond requirements to be waived if it is an emergency situation, so the contractor can undertake emergency projects.

A recent example was a water line break at USD, and that emergency work was held up by the current requirements.

I don’t see a problem with the bill. It went through the Senate without a No vote.

SECOND READING OF HOUSE BILLS AND JOINT RESOLUTIONS

These House bills are here because special appropriation bills have an extended deadline to pass the chamber of origin.

HB 1042 (SoDakLiberty Posts) – Establish the trust company receivership and liquidation captive insurance company fund and to make an appropriation therefor.

SoDakLiberty Stance: Undecided
Prime Sponsors: The Committee on Appropriations is the prime sponsor at the request of the Department of Labor and Regulation.

This was amended in Joint Appropriations to change the $1 appropriation to $2,220,000. I still haven’t had time to listen to testimony on this one to find out what that money is for.

HB 1043 (SoDakLiberty Posts) – Revise the state aid to special education formula.

SoDakLiberty Stance: Undecided
Prime Sponsors: The Committee on Appropriations is the prime sponsor at the request of the Bureau of Finance and Management.

The 0.3% increase for the special education portion of K-12 funding.

HB 1044 (SoDakLiberty Posts) – Revise the state aid to general education formula.

SoDakLiberty Stance: Undecided
Prime Sponsors: The Committee on Appropriations is the prime sponsor at the request of the Bureau of Finance and Management.

The 0.3% increase for K-12 funding.

SECOND READING OF SENATE BILLS AND JOINT RESOLUTIONS

SB 106 (SoDakLiberty Posts) – Provide for the collection of sales taxes from certain remote sellers, to establish certain Legislative findings, and to declare an emergency.

SoDakLiberty Stance: Opposed
Prime Sponsors: Sen Deb Peters (R, Dist 9) and Rep Roger Hunt (R, Dist 25) are the prime sponsors.

This bill made it through the Senate without a No vote.

Here is a post where i looked at the contents of the bill.

Personally I have a lot of reasons for opposing the bill. But first and foremost the bill itself acknowledges constitutional issues in Section 3. That is reason enough for the bill to die.

SB 63 (SoDakLiberty Posts) – Require the development of school safety plans and to require the conduct of school safety drills in accredited schools.

SoDakLiberty Stance: Opposed
Prime Sponsors: Sen Larry Tidemann (R, Dist 7)
and Rep Scott Munsterman (R, Dist 7) are the prime sponsors.

*** Deferred again yesterday!

The bill was amended by Senate Education to remove specific requirements in the plan. This bill was further amended on the Senate floor to remove references to “lockdown” and insert “school safety”. SB 63 had 1 No vote in the Senate.

I can’t see supporting this bill because it is a mandate on schools that will take time from staff to plan and implement. This may be a good idea for schools, but if so that can be decided at the school board level. There is no reason to mandate this at the state level.

SB 58 (SoDakLiberty Posts) – Revise certain restrictions for the use of night-vision equipment for hunting under certain conditions.

SoDakLiberty Stance: Not Opposed
Prime Sponsors: Sen Jason Frerichs (D, Dist 1) and Rep Dick Werner (R, Dist 22)are the prime sponsors.

*** Deferred from yesterday!

This bill aims to change the laws governing using night vision equipment used to take out jackrabbits, coyotes, beaver during its hunting season, foxes, raccoons, opossums, badgers, skunks, or rodents. But I’ve been told by some west river ranchers that taking out coyotes is the main reason for this particular law.

Currently a landowner or occupant and one guest can use night-vision equipment owner’s or occupant’s land. This bill would change that to a landowner or occupant and no more than two guests.

Also, currently the weapon is restricted to “a shotgun using shot shells only or a firearm using a rimfire cartridge”. This bill would change it to “a firearm using a cartridge with a bullet diameter below .225 inches”. A shotgun is still allowed as well.

This bill was slightly amended in Senate Ag to ensure the landowner or occupant is with the guests.

House Ag amended the heck out of it. But all that was substantially changed from the original bill was to change the number of guest from 4 down to 2.

This barely made it through Senate Ag with a vote of 5-4. It then passed on the Senate floor 18-14. House Ag passed this bill 10-3.

SB 81 (SoDakLiberty Posts) – Create the paraprofessional tuition assistance scholarship program.

SoDakLiberty Stance: Not Opposed
Prime Sponsors: Sen Troy Heinert (D, Dist 26) and Rep Shawn Bordeaux (D, Dist 26A) are the prime sponsors.

*** Deferred again yesterday!

This was amended in Senate Education to add a sunset on June 30, 2020. I wish more bills had a sunset.

This is to combat the high teacher turnover by allowing paraprofessionals an avenue to getting the education required for becoming a teacher. It is a companion to SB 82. This will really help the reservation retain good teachers.

SB 55 (SoDakLiberty Posts) – Revise certain provisions relating to the HOPE probation program.

SoDakLiberty Stance: Reluctantly Support
Prime Sponsors: The Committee on Judiciary is the prime sponsor at the request of the Chief Justice.

*** Deferred again yesterday!

Technically I think the HOPE program doesn’t do anything to reduce the amount of criminals. But the HOPE probation program does keep some people convicted of victim-less crimes out of jail. So I reluctantly support this bill to at least take this small step forward. Technically this bill changes the HOPE probation pilot program into a tool that can be used by all courts that deal with criminal cases.

Here is what I said about the bill when it was prefiled:

The HOPE program came about as part of the Public Safety Improvement Act (PSIA). The PSIA was passed into law in 2013 as SB 70. HOPE actually stands for Hawaii Opportunity for Probation Enforcement; the program was originally created in Hawaii. The HOPE program is a “form of intense probation” according to Gilbertson. He explains that it is an alternative to the drug and alcohol courts, without the counseling and costs of those courts. Gilbertson believes expanding HOPE will help people who are not completely addicted to alcohol and drugs, while leaving the drug and alcohol court programs more available to those that truly need the help.

Originally SB 70 approved two court pilot programs. This legislation would extend the South Dakota HOPE probation programs to being “in any court that has jurisdiction over criminal cases”. The bill also removes the word “pilot” from a couple other pieces of codified law.

SB 79 (SoDakLiberty Posts) – Expand the list of professionals authorized to perform certain examinations required for a plea of guilty but mentally ill.

SoDakLiberty Stance: Not Opposed
Prime Sponsors: Sen Deb Peters (R, Dist 9) and Rep Jean Hunhoff (R, Dist 18) are the prime sponsors.

*** Deferred again yesterday!

Currently the court can only use a licensed psychiatrist. This would allow the court to also utilize a court-approved licensed psychologist. There is apparently a backup being caused in the system because of a shortage of available licensed psychiatrists. This is causing mentally ill people charged with crimes to be held up in the system and sitting in jail waiting for an evaluation.

It was slightly amended in Senate Judiciary to clarify the bill.

SB 97 (SoDakLiberty Posts) – Provide for the automatic removal of all petty offenses, municipal ordinance violations, and Class 2 misdemeanor charges or convictions from background check records after ten years under certain conditions.

SoDakLiberty Stance: Support
Prime Sponsors: Sen Craig Tieszen (R, Dist 34) and Rep Mathew Wollmann (R, Dist 8) are the prime sponsors.

*** Deferred again yesterday!

This was slightly amended in Senate Judiciary and on the Senate floor. Here is what the entire new statute would be:

Any charge or conviction resulting from a case where a petty offense, municipal ordinance violation, or a Class 2 misdemeanor was the highest charged offense shall be automatically removed from a defendant’s public record after ten years if all court-ordered conditions on the case have been satisfied. However, the case record will remain available to court personnel or as authorized by order of the court.

This will allow minor crimes to fall off employment background checks after ten years; that is as long as those minor crimes were not attached to a larger crime. It should be noted that law enforcement and the judicial system will still be able to see those charges. . Perhaps that means my underage consumption from too many years ago will fall off my record.

SB 42 (SoDakLiberty Posts) – Increase certain fees for boxing, kickboxing, and mixed martial arts competitions.

SoDakLiberty Stance: Not Opposed
Prime Sponsors: The Committee on Commerce and Energy is the prime sponsor at the request of the Department of Labor and Regulation.

*** Deferred again yesterday!

This bill was amended by Senate Commerce to ensure the administrative fee minimum was not exceed $5,000. Personally I think that is a high minimum to allow, even if it will be set lower by rule. The law still allows the commission to take 5% of revenue in administrative fees. Personally I don’t like a fee with no cap. But if this is the only way to keep MMA events coming to SD I am not opposed to the bill.

SB 45 (SoDakLiberty Posts) – Revise certain provisions of the building South Dakota fund programs.

SoDakLiberty Stance: Opposed
Prime Sponsors: The Committee on State Affairs is the prime sponsor at the request of the Governor’s Office of Economic Development.

*** Deferred from yesterday!

This was amended in both Senate State Affairs and on the Senate floor. This bill gives the Governors Office of Economic Development more flexibility to move money between various funds.

It was further amended in House State Affairs to change approval from the Joint Committee on Appropriations to the Government Operations and Audit Committee.

Personally I think building South Dakota should go away. It was voted down by the people of SD in 2012, and then the Governor and legislature passed it anyway in 2013. This a slush fund used for “economic development”.

SB 5 (SoDakLiberty Posts) – Revise the procedure to initiate a school district boundary change.

SoDakLiberty Stance: Not Opposed
Prime Sponsors: Sen Deb Peters (R, Dist 9) and Rep Herman Otten (R, Dist 6) are the prime sponsors on behalf of the School District Boundary Task Force.

Deferred from yesterday!

I did a post looking at this bill coming out of the School District Boundary Task Force.

SB 134 (SoDakLiberty Posts) from last years session froze all school district boundary changes for one year. There have been many lawsuits between school districts, particularly in the Sioux Falls area, fighting over property tax base. That has taken a lot of taxpayer dollars away from education and putting into litigation.

SB 5 creates a procedure to initiate a school district boundary change. This bill was slightly amended in Senate Education. It had more amendments on the Senate floor. It was amended in House Education to clarify the term rural attendance center.

I really don’t understand the topic enough to speak further on the bill. But I don’t see any problems with it.

SB 54 (SoDakLiberty Posts) – Adopt the Elder Abuse Task Force’s statutory recommendations in order to protect South Dakota seniors and adults with disabilities from abuse, neglect, and exploitation.

SoDakLiberty Stance: Not Opposed
Prime Sponsors: The Committee on Judiciary is the prime sponsor at the request of the Chief Justice.

*** Deferred from yesterday!

This bill is built utilizing the recommendations coming out of the Elder Abuse Task Force. I already did a pretty lengthy post looking at some of what is included in SB 54.

I didn’t see anything in the bill or hear anything during testimony that gave a reason to oppose this bill.

This bill went through the Senate without a No vote. It was slightly amended in House Judiciary and passed that committee 11-0.

SB 9 (SoDakLiberty Posts) – Make an appropriation to fund the Native American achievement schools grant program and paraprofessional tuition assistance scholarship program and to declare an emergency.

SoDakLiberty Stance: Undecided
Prime Sponsors: The Committee on Education is the prime sponsor at the request of the Department of Education.

*** Deferred from yesterday!

This is the funding for SB 81 (SoDakLiberty Posts) and SB 82 (SoDakLiberty Posts).

SB9 would appropriate $2,200,000 “to the Department of Education for the purposes of funding the Native American achievement schools grant program and the paraprofessional tuition assistance scholarship program.” It was amended by Appropriations to change how the funds are handled. If SB 81 and SB 82 do not pass it would make this bill irrelevant.

SB 50 (SoDakLiberty Posts) – Revise the allocation of certain fees collected by the Department of Corrections.

SoDakLiberty Stance: Not Opposed
Prime Sponsors: The Committee on Appropriations is the prime sponsor at the request of the Bureau of Finance and Management.

*** Deferred from yesterday!

This bill was amended in Senate State Affairs to fix a spelling error.

Basically this bill changes where the DOC funds that come from federal and other sources to go directly into the general fund. This is being done due to the volatile nature of these revenue sources. The estimated $4.6 mil would be sent to general fund. This bill is tied to the general appropriations bill, where the Governor asks for money to go to the DOC.

At first I didn’t see a problem with the bill. But now I wonder if this was a backdoor way to get more money to the DOC.

SB 150 (SoDakLiberty Posts) – Revise provisions related to the legislative intern program.

SoDakLiberty Stance: Not Opposed
Prime Sponsors: Sen Billie Sutton (D, Dist 21) and Rep Julie Bartling (D, Dist 21) are the prime sponsors.

*** Deferred from yesterday!

This was hoghoused in Joint Appropriations.

This modifies the statutes dealing with allocating interns for the parties in the legislature. It basically removes three statutes and replaces it with a cleaner one that splits interns based upon the size of each party, but makes sure the minority party has at least three interns in each house.

SB 3 (SoDakLiberty Posts) – Revise the income criteria for determining if property is classified as agricultural land for property tax purposes.

Status: Resurrected
SoDakLiberty Stance: Opposed
Prime Sponsors: Sen Larry Tidemann (R, Dist 7) and Rep Lee Qualm (R, Dist 21) are the prime sponsors on behalf of theAgricultural Land Assessment Implementation and Oversight Advisory Task Force.

*** Deferred from yesterday!

This bill died on the Senate floor 17-18. But then it was reconsidered the next day and passed 18-17.

This is a bill I was still undecided on until the Senate floor debate. After the Senate debate I became opposed. I just don’t think the case was made this would be a good change. And I really think there should have been a fiscal impact of some sort received from at least a few counties. The only fiscal impact was the assertion that one county said there would be minimal impact to their tax base.

SB 80 (SoDakLiberty Posts) – Limit certain liability for hosts of fishing tournaments.

SoDakLiberty Stance: Not Opposed
Prime Sponsors: Sen Corey Brown (R, Dist 23) and Rep Michele Harrison (R, Dist 23) are the prime sponsors.

*** Deferred from yesterday!

The bill was amended during the second hearing in House Ag. It dealt with concerns about whether it would apply to ice fishing events. It also modified how the bill would apply to participants, instead of just those running the event.

As amended the bill help protect the sponsors of a fishing event.

It passed through the bill without a No vote.

SB 2 (SoDakLiberty Posts) – Revise the distribution of the revenue from the alcoholic beverage fund.

SoDakLiberty Stance: Support
Prime Sponsors: Sen Bob Ewing (R, Dist 31) and Rep Leslie Heinemann (R, Dist 8) are the prime sponsors on behalf of the Interim Committee on County Government.

*** Deferred again yesterday!

Currently 25% of revenue from the alcohol tax goes to municipalities and the rest goes to the state. This bill originally changed that to 1/3 to the municipalities, 1/3 to the counties, and 1/3 to the state. That was done so the counties could recoup costs being imposed by the state.

This bill was amended in Senate Local Government to change that distribution to 25% municipalities, 25% counties, and 50% state. That still gets more revenue to the counties, but does not increase the municipal take. The bill passed through the Senate 28-5.

Personally I think it should be amended back to 1/3 each, but as is this bill will help the counties.

SB 102 (SoDakLiberty Posts) – Allow certain alcoholic beverage licenses and special event alcoholic beverage licenses to be issued on certain lands and facilities located on state educational institution campuses.

SoDakLiberty Stance: Support
Prime Sponsors: Sen Larry Tidemann (R, Dist 7) and Rep Scott Munsterman (R, Dist 7) are the prime sponsors.

This would allow the State Universities, with the Board of Regents permission, to sell beer and wine at special events. This is obviously being done for sporting events. But it would allow it for much more. It would allow beer and wine sales for any events involving “performing arts, intercollegiate athletics, fund-raising, a reception, a conference, or an occasional or scheduled event at a facility used for performing arts, intercollegiate athletics, events, or receptions”.

Personally I think it’s a good idea. But I know there is already a lot of opposition against this change…It passed Senate Commerce 6-1, the Senate floor 18-13, and House Commerce 9-3.

SB 69 (SoDakLiberty Posts) – Require accredited schools to accept transfer credits for courses taken by students from other accredited schools during the summer and to declare an emergency.

SoDakLiberty Stance: Support
Prime Sponsors: Sen Deb Peters (R, Dist 9) and Rep Fred Deutsch (R, Dist 4) are the prime sponsors.

Currently some schools are not allowing transfer credits from summer schools in certain cases. This seems odd because it is from an accredited school. There are quite a few students that like to take summer classes to get ahead on their education. West Central in Hartford apparently does not allow this, even though such classes are available in Sioux Falls. Any of these West Central students that wish to take summer classes in Sioux Falls would not receive credit for the class on their transcript.

The bill was amended in Senate Ed to add an emergency clause. It was further amended on the Senate floor to add that a school is only required to accept the credits only if they are notified in advance the student will be taking a class in another accredited school.

SB 129 (SoDakLiberty Posts) – Establish certain suicide awareness and prevention training requirements for certain school employees based on the Jason Flatt Act.

SoDakLiberty Stance: Not Opposed
Prime Sponsors: Sen Jenna Haggar (R, Dist 10) and Rep Lynne DiSanto (R, Dist 35) are the prime sponsors.

Basically this bill will require all teachers that are required to have a teachers certificate to go through one hour of suicide awareness training when seeking or renewing their teaching certificate. The DOE is to oversee this requirement.

This had three hearings in Senate Ed. It was amended in that committee to add this provision:

The training required may be accomplished through self-review of suicide prevention materials that meet the guidelines developed by the board.

It was then further amended to add this:

The requirement for suicide awareness and prevention training for initial certification or to renew a certificate begins after July 1, 2017.

More info about this Act can be found on the Jason Foundation website.

SB 31 (SoDakLiberty Posts) – Revise certain provisions regarding the sentencing and supervision of prison inmates and parolees with suspended sentences.

SoDakLiberty Stance: Not Opposed
Prime Sponsors: The Committee on Judiciary is the prime sponsor at the request of the Department of Corrections.

This bill ensures the Board of Pardons and Paroles have the ability to impose and enforce supervision conditions on inmates with suspended sentences or partially suspended sentences. This bill also allows low-level felonies to be dealt with when that felony happens while the person is on parole. Part of this comes up because of a Supreme Court ruling that these inmates and parolees cannot fall under two different departments.

This bill made it through the Senate without a No vote. It had some resistance in House Judiciary when it passed 8-2.

HB 1183 (SoDakLiberty Posts) – Revise certain provisions regarding the jurisdiction of magistrate courts to issue protection orders.

SoDakLiberty Stance: Not Opposed
Prime Sponsors: Rep Timothy Johns (R, Dist 31) and Sen Arthur Rusch (R, Dist 17) are the prime sponsors.

This bill made it through the House without a No vote.

This bill deals with domestic protection actions and stalking matters.  Currently only circuit court judges can hear those, this bill would allow law trained magistrates the jurisdiction to hear those cases. It was amended in House Judiciary limits the bill to stalking matters and domestic protection actions. I think that amendment help to alleviate the concerns that magistrates were confined to certain cases. If a child was concerned it would not go to the magistrate, that would still go to circuit court.

It was further amended by Senate Judiciary just to make sure the magistrate court is not making child custody decisions.

The House did not concur with the Senate changes so it has to go to conference committee.

Bills on SD Senate floor for Tues Mar 1

SD Senate floor. Photo by Ken Santema 2/19/16.
SD Senate floor. Photo by Ken Santema 2/19/16.

Here are the bills on the Senate floor for Tuesday, March 1, which begins at 2:00 PM central. This is compiled using the calendar at the time of composing this post. Agendas can and do change!

The Senate Floor video can be viewed live on the SDPB YouTube channel. Previous recordings can also be viewed there.

MOTIONS AND RESOLUTIONS

HCR 1015 (SoDakLiberty Posts) – Commending Taiwan’s presidential election; supporting Taiwan’s efforts to secure entry to the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) and the signing of the Free Trade Agreement (FTA) and the Bilateral Investment Agreement (BIA) with the United States; and reaffirming support for increasing Taiwan’s international profile and for strengthening and expanding sister-state ties between South Dakota and Taiwan.

SoDakLiberty Stance: Opposed
Prime Sponsors: Rep Roger Hunt (R, Dist 25) and Sen Craig Tieszen (R, Dist 34) are the prime sponsors

This is the latest version of the bad TPP resolution that has come up the last couple of years. Last fall I did three separate posts looking at TPP in SD politics:

  1. TPP and the SD legislature
  2. TPP and the SD Dept of Ag
  3. TPP and the Congressional delegation

Now that TPP and TPA have gotten a little bit of attention maybe there will be more no votes this year.

HCR 1017 (SoDakLiberty Posts) – Commending the nation of Israel for its cordial and mutually beneficial relationship with the United States and with the State of South Dakota.

SoDakLiberty Stance: Not Opposed
Prime Sponsors: Rep Fred Deutsch (R, Dist 4) and Sen Brock Greenfield  (R, Dist 2) are the prime sponsors

SECOND READING OF CONSENT CALENDAR ITEMS

HB 1188 (SoDakLiberty Posts) – Exempt certain operations of school buses from commercial motor vehicle fees.

SoDakLiberty Stance: Not Opposed
Prime Sponsors: Rep Steve Westra (R, Dist 13) and Sen David Novstrup (R, Dist 3) are the prime sponsors.

This is a bill to clarify that certain school buses are exempt from commercial motor vehicle fees. This is aimed at making sure that school buses that have occasional uses for commercial purposes, such as busing people to and from an event such as the State Fair, are not considered commercial.

This bill had 1 No vote on the House floor.

HB 1230 (SoDakLiberty Posts) – Require lights on certain animal-drawn vehicles while operating on a highway.

SoDakLiberty Stance: Undecided
Prime Sponsors: Rep Kyle Schoenfish (R, Dist 19) and Sen Bill Van Gerpen (R, Dist 19) are the prime sponsors.

This was hoghoused in House Transportation. Originally the bill modified current law, and now a new section would be added. This bill is being brought because some Amish families have been moving to the Tripp area. Some local citizens are concerned because the buggies are hard to see at night.

This bill would require “flashing amber light that is visible from the front of the vehicle and a red flashing light visible from the rear of the vehicle”. Some of the buggies already use these lights. Now all buggies would have to use them at night.

This passed House Transportation 10-0. It passed on the House floor 59-8. It then went through Senate Transportation 7-0.

I really don’t see why this bill is in the legislature. I would think the Amish community in question would do this on their own to keep themselves safe..

These Senate bills are here because special appropriation bills have an extended deadline to pass the chamber of origin.

SB 96 (SoDakLiberty Posts) – Revise the expense reimbursement for members of the Board of Pardons and Paroles.

SoDakLiberty Stance: Undecided
Prime Sponsors: Sen Craig Tieszen (R, Dist 34) and Rep Mathew Wollmann (R, Dist 8) are the prime sponsors.

Originally this bill would have set a $200 per day minimal per diem. I found this odd until I heard the Judiciary committee hearing. But after hearing testimony I will agree this board does ask a lot more of its members than other boards do. This board has its members almost acting as quasi state employees.

This was amended in Joint Appropriations to get rid of the $200 per day idea and replace it with this:

Each member shall receive expense reimbursement at the amount fixed for the per diem allowance that is authorized by the United States Internal Revenue Service to be excluded from the gross income without itemization as of October first each year

SB 47 (SoDakLiberty Posts) – Reduce the unemployment contribution rates for certain employers and to provide for an unemployment insurance administrative fee.

SoDakLiberty Stance: Undecided
Prime Sponsors: The Committee on Appropriations is the prime sponsor at the request of the Department of Labor and Regulation.

This is a bill I haven’t had time to listen to testimony on. It was hoghoused in Joint Appropriations.

SECOND READING OF HOUSE BILLS AND JOINT RESOLUTIONS

HB 1177 (SoDakLiberty Posts) – Revise certain provisions concerning tax incentives for certain energy facilities.

SoDakLiberty Stance: Undecided
Prime Sponsors: Rep Roger Solum (R, Dist 5) and Sen Ried Holien (R, Dist 5) are the prime sponsors.

This bill will give the same tax incentives for large-scale solar facilities that is given to wind farms. In code these solar panel facilities and wind farms will now be referred to as a renewable facility if this passes into law. An odd part of the bill is that it applies to solar facilities that don’t yet exist in SD.

This was highly amended in House Tax.

I am leaning towards opposition to the bill because I don’t feel any energy sectors should be receiving tax favoritism.

This bill passed House Tax 15-0. It then met more resistance on the House floor where it passed 54-15. It passed Senate tax 7-0.

HB 1204 (SoDakLiberty Posts) – Provide a sales and use tax exemption for certain nonprofit corporations created for the purpose of fire protection.

SoDakLiberty Stance: Not Opposed
Prime Sponsors: Rep David Anderson (R, Dist 16) and Sen Larry Tidemann (R, Dist 7) are the prime sponsors.

This bill came forward because of an issue in Canton. The city has  fire department and owns fire department trucks, those are exempt. The firemen have their own nonprofit and lend their services to the city and surrounding area. The rural community also owns truck and equipment as an unincorporated association. So they began the process of creating a fire district, but that didn’t make sense. Then a nonprofit was created for the area around Canton to own firetrucks and equipment. Now this association is looking at buying a new pumper truck, DOR said this association is exempt from excise tax, but not from the sales and use portion for all the equipment to be put on the truck. This bill would fix that.

The bill was hoghoused by House Taxation. DOR wanted it amended to fit into a new section. The amendment does what the original bill intended.

This bill had 1 No vote on the House floor.

SD legislative committee meetings for Tues Mar 1

SD House Floor. Photo by Ken Santema 2/18/16.
SD House Floor. Photo by Ken Santema 2/18/16.

Here is the list of the SD legislative committee meetings that are taking place on Tuesday, March 1st. For any committee meeting that has bills taken up I’ve included the link to my post about those bills. For committees without bills on the agenda I’ve listed what they are doing instead of working on bills.

This is compiled using the agenda at the time of composing this post. Agendas can and do change!

One way to listen to these meetings live is via the audio links on the Schedule page of the LRC website. While there you can also view the status board for the meetings as they are going on.

*** Today is the last the Appropriations committee has to send a special appropriation bill to the house of origin.

House Appropriations8:00 AM2 Bills. BRTF bills to help teacher pay and retention.

Joint Appropriations10:00 AM – 6 possible Bills. Also on the agenda is the following:

BUDGET SETTING SCHEDULE:

    Secretary of State

House Taxation – 7:45 am – No Meeting!

Senate Judiciary8:00 AM & 4:00 pm10 Bills. Guns and revenge porn.

House Health & Human Services7:45 AM – 3 Bills. Additional beds at Veterans home and cannabinoid.

Senate Education – 7:45 AM3 Bills. School Attendance Centers and Dyslexia.

House Ag & Natural Resources7:45 AM3 Bills. 660 rule and buffer strips.

House Local Government10:00 AM. 4 Bills. The Hartford bills.

House Transportation – 10:00 AM – No Meeting!

Senate Ag & Natural Resources – 10:00 AM – 2 Bills. Waterfowl and fertilizer.

Senate Commerce & Energy10:00 AM – No Meeting!

Joint Appropriations has 1 budget setting item and 6 possible bills

Concrete mixer full of dollars isolated on white background

On Tuesday, March 1, at 8:00 am the SD Joint Committee on Appropriations will possibly take on number of bills after budget setting items. This is compiled using the agenda at the time of composing this post. Agendas can and do change!

One way to listen to these meetings live is via the audio links on the Schedule page of the LRC website. While there you can also view the status board for the meetings as they are going on.

BUDGET SETTING SCHEDULE:

Secretary of State

BILLS FOR POSSIBLE ACTION WHICH HAVE HAD PRIOR HEARING.

HB 1029 (SoDakLiberty Posts) – Make an appropriation to the Department of Health to fund the rural residency program and to declare an emergency.

SoDakLiberty Stance: Undecided
Prime Sponsors: The Committee on Appropriations is the prime sponsor at the request of the Department of Health.

This has already had a hearing. Here is what I said prior to the previous meeting:

This bill would appropriate $205,000 “to support the development of a rural family medicine residency track for six medical students to address health care workforce shortages.”

I wonder how well this bill will do while the legislature is being asked to raise more revenue for teach shortage problems…

HB 1046 (SoDakLiberty Posts) – Make an appropriation to the railroad trust fund and to declare an emergency.

SoDakLiberty Stance: Undecided
Prime Sponsors: The Committee on Appropriations is the prime sponsor at the request of the Department of Transportation.

Here is what I said when the bill was prefiled:

This bill would appropriate $1,000,000 to the railroad trust fund “for the purposes of planning, enlarging, maintaining, equipping, and protecting railroads and railroad facilities”.

The committee meeting for this one should be interesting to listen to. Is this money needed to handle new rail traffic expected due to agricultural projects going on in SD? Or is this to update sections of line already in use? The bill has an emergency clause, that means the DOT would get the money right away after being signed into law.

Hopefully it won’t be used for non-infrastructure projects like federal DOT money was misused in Fort Pierre.

HB 1203 (SoDakLiberty Posts) – Pay off bonds and make certain other changes necessary to effectuate a tuition freeze by the Board of Regents and the technical institutes, to make an appropriation therefor, and to declare an emergency.

SoDakLiberty Stance: Undecided
Prime Sponsors: The Committee on Appropriations is the prime sponsor at the request of the Office of the Governor.

This was mentioned by the Governor in his budgetary address as his way to freeze tuition. The money saved by paying off the bonds can then be used to freeze tuition. My only problem with this is it does nothing to address the rising costs that cause tuition to go up.

SB 84 (SoDakLiberty Posts) – Require municipalities to reimburse the counties for certain judicial and law enforcement expenditures.

SoDakLiberty Stance: Undecided
Prime Sponsors: Sen Jenna Haggar (R, Dist 10) and Rep Elizabeth May (R, Dist 27) are the prime sponsors.

This wouldn’t take effect until June 1, 2018. This bill likely comes about because of the many mandates passed down by the state, and the counties looking for any way to get revenues to offset those costs. In this case it would force municipality to pay more of their share of county judicial and law enforcement costs.

SB 92 (SoDakLiberty Posts) – Continue a math pilot project at the South Dakota School of Mines and Technology, to make an appropriation therefor, and to declare an emergency.

SoDakLiberty Stance: Undecided
Prime Sponsors: Sen Terri Haverly (R, Dist 35) and Rep Jeff Partridge (R, Dist 34) are the prime sponsors.

This would appropriate $250,000 to the South Dakota School of Mines and Technology for the continuation of the 2015 math pilot project.

The only apprehension about the bill I have is that it would use taxpayer dollars to fund a project that was being funded privately before. It is a good program though…

HB 1061 (SoDakLiberty Posts) – Provide a tuition benefit to certain teachers who enroll in courses under the management and control of the Board of Regents that are not subsidized by the general fund.

SoDakLiberty Stance: Undecided
Prime Sponsors: Rep Mike Stevens (R, Dist 18) and Sen Arthur Rusch (R, Dist 17) are the prime sponsors.

I forgot about this bill. It was deferred from Feb 17.

Currently certain teachers that have to take certain classes as part of their job can get 50% of their tuition reimbursed. This would appear to extend that to distance education classes, and not just apply to physical classes. This might be a good expansion of the program, if I am reading the bill correctly that is.

This was slightly amended in House Education to ensure payments are “based on the in-state resident tuition rate”.

Senate Judiciary has 2 meetings and 10 bills on Tues Mar 1, guns and revenge porn

22501149On Tuesday, March 1, at 8:00 am the SD Senate Judiciary committee will take on 6 bills. Then at 4:00 pm the SD Senate Judiciary committee will take on another 4 bills. This is compiled using the agenda at the time of composing this post. Agendas can and do change!

One way to listen to these meetings live is via the audio links on the Schedule page of the LRC website. While there you can also view the status board for the meetings as they are going on.

8:00 am meeting

HB 1135 (SoDakLiberty Posts) – Establish venue for certain actions arising out of real property lease agreements.

SoDakLiberty Stance: Not Opposed
Prime Sponsors: Rep Alex Jensen (R, Dist 12) and Sen William Shorma (R, Dist 16) are the prime sponsors.

This would make sure that legal disagreements between the two parties in a lease agreement is tried in the county where the land is. I actually assumed that was already true.  But apparently that isn’t true.

This went through the House without a No vote.

HB 1129 (SoDakLiberty Posts) – Allow a concealed pistol in the capitol and any county courthouse with an enhanced concealed pistol permit.

SoDakLiberty Stance: Support
Prime Sponsors: Rep Lee Qualm (R, Dist 21) and Sen Betty Olson (R, Dist 28) are the prime sponsors.

This is the bill I think should make it for allowing a concealed pistol to be allowed in the capital building or county courthouses.

This would allow anyone who has an enhanced concealed pistol permit to carry in county courthouses and the state capital building. The enhanced concealed pistol permit was created in 2015 via HB 1215 (SoDakLiberty Posts). This permit has greater background check and training requirements.

Personally I like this change. With this change law-abiding citizens won’t have to worry about securing their pistol away just because they are going in the capital building or county building. Those with the standard concealed carry permit would still not be able to carry in these locations.

It also applies to employees in these buildings. State Treasurer Rich Sattgast gave testimony to that effect.

This bill did have some resistance in the House. It passed House State Affairs 7-6 and the House floor 45-17.

HB 1138 (SoDakLiberty Posts) – Revise provisions related to the enhanced permit to carry a concealed pistol.

SoDakLiberty Stance: Not Opposed
Prime Sponsors: Rep Thomas Brunner (R, Dist 29) and Sen Brock Greenfield  (R, Dist 2) are the prime sponsors.

This is a cleanup bill for the enhanced pistol permit.

Currently some parts of statutes say the permit is good for 4 years, even though that had been changed to 5. This cleans up some of those references.

The other change has to do with the $100 permit fee. Currently $50 goes to the Sheriff and $50 goes to the Secretary of State. This bill would change that to 50% to the Sheriff and 50% to the Secretary of State. If I am doing the math right, that means no actual change is being made…

The bill was amended to have the renewal split 50/50 as well.

This bill made it through House without a No vote.

HCR 1009 (SoDakLiberty Posts) – Expressing the right of South Dakotans to own and use firearms.

SoDakLiberty Stance: Not Opposed
Prime Sponsors: Rep Jim Stalzer (R, Dist 11) and Sen Jeff Monroe (R, Dist 24) are the prime sponsors.

I love it, a resolution against Obama’s executive actions on gun control.

HB 1125 (SoDakLiberty Posts) – Limit the ability of a person to obtain a concealed pistol permit related to the restoration of civil rights and to declare an emergency.

SoDakLiberty Stance: Not Opposed
Prime Sponsors: Rep Thomas Brunner (R, Dist 29) and Sen Brock Greenfield  (R, Dist 2) are the prime sponsors.

This repeals § 23-7-52, which restores the right to obtain a concealed pistol or an enhanced permit to carry a concealed pistol after civil rights have been restored. What happened is last year when the enhanced concealed carry permit was passed into law it accidentally changed the law to restore the right to get the permit to all convicted felons. The intent last year was to allow certain felons to be able to get a permit if they had their rights restored. There is another statute that already deals with restoring gun rights, removing this one puts the law back to what was intended.

At first I was one of the people worried about this bill. But after researching it further I don’t see this as a bad change.

It was amended in committee to give it an emergency clause.

This bill went through the House with a No vote.

HB 1190 (SoDakLiberty Posts) – Enhance customer convenience in firearms transactions, improve public safety, and provide for the issuance of an additional concealed pistol permit.

SoDakLiberty Stance: Support
Prime Sponsors: Rep Mark Mickelson (R, Dist 13) and Sen Arthur Rusch (R, Dist 17) are the prime sponsors.

This started out as a blank bill, and then was hoghoused with the actual content House State Affairs. It was further amended in its second hearing to change the fees and how the were allocated. It was also further amended to give the Sheriff extra authority to confiscate the card due to a violent crime or felony.

It also had a slight wording amendment on the House floor.

This would basically create a new concealed carry permit called a “gold card” concealed weapon permit, this would be in addition to the current concealed carry permit and enhanced concealed carry permit.

Here are some quick facts about the permit:

  • Fingerprinting would be necessary to get the permit
  • The fee would be $70 to get the permit; $30 to the Sheriff, $34 to DPS, and $6 to the SOS
  • NICS background check at the beginning of the process.
  • This permit would last for 5 years
  • This permit would allow a purchaser to buy a firearm without a background check. This is really important at gun shows where that may not be possible.
  • This permit also allows for periodic NICS background checks on all gold card permit holders.

23 other states have similar laws. Federal law does allow for a mechanism to bypass a NICS background check with a program such as this in place.

 This bill had only 1 No vote on the House floor.

4:00 pm meeting

HB 1132 (SoDakLiberty Posts) – Require the submission of sexual assault kits for testing.

SoDakLiberty Stance: Not Opposed
Prime Sponsors: Rep Peggy Gibson (D, Dist 22) and Sen Angie Buhl O’Donnell (D, Dist 15) are the prime sponsors.

This bill is similar to SB 130 (SoDakLiberty Posts). Where SB 130 basically makes sure DCI tests kits within 90 days, HB 1132 goes much further.

This bill lays out the steps to get these kits tested set out in law and has deadlines to hopefully speed up the process and get results in a more timely manner. This should help prevent the current backlog South Dakota has.

This bill made it through the House without a No vote.

HB 1153 (SoDakLiberty Posts) – Allow parties to agree to resolve an eminent domain dispute by mediation.

SoDakLiberty Stance: Support
Prime Sponsors: Rep Timothy Johns (R, Dist 31) and Sen Jim Peterson (D, Dist 4) are the prime sponsors.

This was a hoghouse vehicle bill. Here is the full bill after being hoghoused:

The parties may by agreement refer a dispute that is the subject of a proceeding under this chapter for resolution by mediation using the services of a mediator selected by the parties.”

This was an agreement between the utilities and land owners. This would allow land owners to have an eminent domain case mediated.

This is a step in the right direction.

This bill went through the House without a No vote.

HB 1167 (SoDakLiberty Posts) – Revise certain provisions regarding the use of a suspended imposition of sentence for a misdemeanor and a felony.

SoDakLiberty Stance: Support
Prime Sponsors: Rep Steven Haugaard (R, Dist 10) and Sen Ried Holien (R, Dist 5) are the prime sponsors.

This bill was amended in House Judiciary. Opponents of the bill had some problems with the language, the amendment apparently fixed that. Now after being amended there is a separate section for felony suspended imposition and one for a misdemeanor suspended imposition.

I think this is a good bill and hope it passes.

This bill had 1 No vote on the House floor.

HB 1243 (SoDakLiberty Posts) – Prohibit the unauthorized sharing of certain private images on the internet.

SoDakLiberty Stance: Undecided
Prime Sponsors: Rep Peggy Gibson (D, Dist 22) and Sen Angie Buhl O’Donnell (D, Dist 15) are the prime sponsors.

This is a “revenge porn” bill. Apparently some of the websites that post revenge porn also includes links to the social media accounts of the person in the video. Other times the photos/videos will be sent to the victim’s family and coworkers.

This was amended by House Judiciary to help protect the communications industry. The order of the bill was also changed to better fit within the current statute.

This passed House Judiciary 8-4 and the House floor 65-1.

Senate Ag has 2 bills on Tues Mar 1, waterfowl and fertilizer

On Tuesday, March 1, at 10:00 am the SD Senate Agriculture and Natural Resources committee will take on 2 bills. This is compiled using the agenda at the time of composing this post. Agendas can and do change!

One way to listen to these meetings live is via the audio links on the Schedule page of the LRC website. While there you can also view the status board for the meetings as they are going on.

HB 1075 (SoDakLiberty Posts) – Revise the area for certain open units where nonresident waterfowl licenses are issued.

SoDakLiberty Stance: Undecided
Prime Sponsors: Rep Dick Werner (R, Dist 22) and Sen Corey Brown (R, Dist 23) are the prime sponsors.

This bill would revise an administrative rule, instead of codified law. In particular it would modify ARSD 41:06:16:11, which deals with the maximum number of nonresident waterfowl licenses. There are a couple of style changes to the regulation. But the bigger change would be to change the following nonresident waterfowl unit (underline is new language added):

    (5) Unit NRW-00X: the counties of Campbell, Edmunds, Faulk, McPherson, Walworth, Potter, Stanley, Sully, Hughes, and Lyman. No more than 1,500 fall three-day temporary nonresident waterfowl licenses may be issued. These Thelicenses issued pursuant to this subdivision in Potter, Stanley, Sully, Hughes, and Lyman are valid only on private property as provided by SDCL 41-6-18.4;

The map below from the GFP website shows the current location of NRW-00X:

Screen Cap from GFP website.
Screen Cap from GFP website.

So Campbell, Edmunds, Faulk, McPherson, and Walworth are being added to this unit.

It should be noted a bill to change the number of licenses in this unit failed, that was HB 1115 (SoDakLiberty Posts).

This bill passed House Ag 9-3 and the House floor 36-32.

HB 1094 (SoDakLiberty Posts) – Increase the commercial fertilizer inspection fee for purposes of fertilizer-related research and education and to create the Nutrient Research and Education Council to promote such research and education.

SoDakLiberty Stance: Opposed
Prime Sponsors: Rep Lee Qualm (R, Dist 21) and Sen Larry Tidemann (R, Dist 7) are the prime sponsors.

This bill was amended in House Ag to modify parts of the bill. A big change from the amendment was to add research for water quality.

I do not like this bill at all. It is a large fee increase, and done for what I feel is the wrong reason. Apparently the industry wants this fee increase to create this new Nutrient Research and Education Council. If the industry truly wants this why can’t they do it without using the state to collect the fees. This was tried in 2013 via SB 115, that bill was vetoed by the Governor.

Senate Ed has 3 bills on Tues Mar 1, school attendance centers and dyslexia

21450908On Tuesday, March 1, at 7:45 am the SD Senate Education committee will take on 3 bills. This is compiled using the agenda at the time of composing this post. Agendas can and do change!

One way to listen to these meetings live is via the audio links on the Schedule page of the LRC website. While there you can also view the status board for the meetings as they are going on.

HB 1096 (SoDakLiberty Posts) – Provide for the exemption of certain schools from a tuition limitation applied to some bordering state school districts.

Status: Resurrected
SoDakLiberty Stance: Support
Prime Sponsors: Rep Jim Bolin (R, Dist 16) and Sen Jenna Haggar (R, Dist 10) are the prime sponsors.

This is a bill that was killed (a good one that would have allowed parents an avenue to keep their kids from taking state mandated non-academic tests). It was resurrected and hoghoused with a new purpose.

This came about because of a situation in Union County with two small school districts that sends students to high school in Iowa. The contracts these schools have with Iowa don’t meet the requirements of SD law, which would mean the local districts would have to pay more. The other option was to exempt these two schools from the 110% tuition cap paid by the state. That is what this bill does if I understand the bill correctly.

There are about 60 students total this would impact.

HB 1169 (SoDakLiberty Posts) – Allow a school district to operate an attendance center within another school district

SoDakLiberty Stance: Undecided
Prime Sponsors: Rep Mathew Wollmann (R, Dist 8) and Sen Deb Peters (R, Dist 9) are the prime sponsors.

 

This was amended in House Education. The amendment removes lines that were found to be unnecessary or duplicative of other statutes. It was also amended on the House floor.

This bill allows a school district to open an attendance center within another school district, only if they enter into a joint powers agreement. Both schools have to agree. School boards can authorize this.

There is currently a school district that has opened up an attendance center in another school district. A colony has opened an attendance center in the Chester school district. Moving away from the Madison School District. It appears there is nothing that forbids this activity, so any school can open an attendance center is any other school district. With the many fights over boundaries it is possible more of these attendance centers will be tried.

The amendment on the House floor basically clarified the Colony that opened a Chester school district attendance center can keep doing what it is doing. The amendment also removed the sunset on this provision. Here is that amendment:

A joint powers agreement to operate an attendance center not owned by the school district within the boundaries of another school district is not required for any attendance center that was established before January 1, 2016.

I understand the colony in question had a good reason for doing what they did. But why pass a law to deal with one situation that has yet to be shown as a larger issue? Or will future changes planned to school district boundary changes create more of these situations?

HB 1198 (SoDakLiberty Posts) – Recognize dyslexia as a learning disability.

SoDakLiberty Stance: Undecided
Prime Sponsors: Rep Lynne DiSanto (R, Dist 35) and Sen Betty Olson (R, Dist 28) are the prime sponsors.

This bill would have school districts offer dyslexia screening for students that exhibit possible symptoms of dyslexia. It would authorize the Dept of Ed to promulgate rules to deal with dyslexia. There were multiple claims the Dept of Ed has drug their feet on this issue.

The Dept of Ed said they have been working on the issue and would rather do a workgroup. They also mentioned there is a Dyslexia handbook available for parents and teachers on their website.

House Appropriations has 2 bills on Tues Mar 1, BRTF bills to help teacher pay and retention

2110888On Tuesday, March 1, at 8:00 am the SD House Committee on Appropriations will take on 2 bills. This is compiled using the agenda at the time of composing this post. Agendas can and do change!

One way to listen to these meetings live is via the audio links on the Schedule page of the LRC website. While there you can also view the status board for the meetings as they are going on.

SB 131 (SoDakLiberty Posts) – Establish a target teacher salary and a target teacher ratio, to revise certain provisions regarding education funding, to create the School Finance Accountability Board, and to provide for certain school district reporting and penalties.

SoDakLiberty Stance: Undecided
Prime Sponsors: The Committee on Appropriations is the prime sponsor at the request of the Office of the Governor.

This is one of 2 bills the Governor’s office submitted to accompany the 1/2 cent sales tax to pay for the Blue Ribbon Task Force recommendations.

This was heavily amended in Senate State Affairs. I haven’t had time to listen to that testimony. It was further amended on the Senate floor. The interesting part of that amendment was to add this:

(6B) “Wind energy tax revenue,” any wind energy tax revenue apportioned to school districts pursuant to § 10-35-21 from a wind farm producing power for the first time before July 1, 2016, shall be considered local effort pursuant to subdivision (6) and other revenue base amount pursuant to subdivision (6A). However, any wind energy tax revenue apportioned to a school district from a wind farm producing power for the first time after June 30, 2016, one hundred percent shall be retained by the school district to which the tax revenue is apportioned for the first five years of producing power, eighty percent for the sixth year, sixty percent for the seventh year, forty percent for the eighth year, twenty percent for the ninth year, and zero percent thereafter;”.

We’ll see if House appropriations amends this even further.

I would like to add that teachers from small school districts might want to read this bill very carefully. This is potentially a blueprint for forced consolidation in about three to four years. It definitely favors large school districts…

SB 133 (SoDakLiberty Posts) – Revise certain provisions regarding shared services provided by the state to school districts, the sharing of services of school district employees, the classroom innovation grant program, and educator mentoring and certification reciprocity.

SoDakLiberty Stance: Undecided
Prime Sponsors: The Committee on Appropriations is the prime sponsor at the request of the Office of the Governor.

This is part of the Governor’s proposal coming out of the Blue Ribbon Task force. This bill in particular looks at recruitment and retaining teachers, and this bill has nothing to do with teacher pay.

This bill also tries to create efficiency at the state level to help school districts work together.

House Local Government has 4 bills on Tues Mar 1, the Hartford bills

Screenshot of Hartford from the School & Public Lands GIS website.
Screenshot of Hartford from the School & Public Lands GIS website.

On Tuesday, March 1, at 10:00 am the SD House Local Government committee will take on 4 bills. This is compiled using the agenda at the time of composing this post. Agendas can and do change!

One way to listen to these meetings live is via the audio links on the Schedule page of the LRC website. While there you can also view the status board for the meetings as they are going on.

SB 64 (SoDakLiberty Posts) – Revise the voting authority of an alderman.

SoDakLiberty Stance: Support
Prime Sponsors: Sen Scott Fiegen (R, Dist 25) and Rep Paula Hawks (D, Dist 9) are the prime sponsors.

This bill was amended in Senate Local Government. It clarified the language in the bill to make sure nothing is vague. The amendment also makes sure a council can actually conduct business when there are not enough members for a quorum.

This is a bill that shouldn’t be necessary. Yet it is because Hartford Council Chair Doyle Johnson decided it would be OK to vote twice in the absence of the mayor. One was his own vote, then he voted again acting as mayor. It is almost mind-boggling that anyone would try that. I have yet to ever hear it OK to vote twice on any kind of board.

Other than that this bill has a lot of cleanup and language clarification for statutes dealing with aldermen.

SB 65 (SoDakLiberty Posts) – Revise the procedure for a municipal recall petition.

SoDakLiberty Stance: Support
Prime Sponsors: Sen Scott Fiegen (R, Dist 25) and Rep Paula Hawks (D, Dist 9) are the prime sponsors.

One of the Hartford bills. This bill clarifies the process for a recall election. It was amended to remove one part of the bill I didn’t like where a “statement of facts” would have to be checked. Now only signatures and the petition are checked for validity. This is a good bill, even if it shouldn’t have been necessary. But dirty politics in Hartford made it necessary.

This had 1 No vote on the Senate floor.

SB 74 (SoDakLiberty Posts) – Authorize members of certain governing bodies who are displaced by a natural disaster to continue their term of office.

SoDakLiberty Stance: Support
Prime Sponsors: Sen Bill Van Gerpen (R, Dist 19) and Rep Kent Peterson (R, Dist 19) are the prime sponsors.

This would add a new section of code stating the following:

Any member of a governing body of a county, municipality, school district, township, or special purpose district, who is displaced from the district, county, municipality, township, ward, or precinct from which the member was elected or appointed to serve by flood, tornado, fire, or other natural disaster may continue to serve until the expiration of the member’s term.

I don’t really see a problem with this change. It would be obvious the people in question are not moving by choice. And if it would appear the move would be permanent, hopefully the person in question would have the ethical fortitude to resign.

If I remember right from testimony,  this bill is due to one of the tornadoes in the last couple of years, probably Wessington Springs.

This went through the Senate without a No vote.

SB 90 (SoDakLiberty Posts) – Ensure that members of the public are able to access and record public meetings.

SoDakLiberty Stance: Support
Prime Sponsors: Sen Ried Holien (R, Dist 5) and Rep Burt Tulson (R, Dist 2) are the prime sponsors.

I love this bill. It was slightly amended in Senate Judiciary. Here is the current form of the bill

No state, political subdivision, or public body may prevent a person from recording, through audio or video technology, a public meeting that is open to the public as long as the recording is reasonable, obvious, and not disruptive.

This bill is in response to at least four cases in the last year where citizens were not allowed to record open meetings.

This went through the Senate without a No vote.

House Health has 3 bills on Tues Mar 1, additional beds at Veterans home and cannabinoid

SDVets_FloorPlan-small
Veterans home floor plan from the SD Dept of Veterans Affairs website.

On Tuesday, March 1, at 7:45 am the SD House Health and Human Services committee will take on 3 bills. This is compiled using the agenda at the time of composing this post. Agendas can and do change!

One way to listen to these meetings live is via the audio links on the Schedule page of the LRC website. While there you can also view the status board for the meetings as they are going on.

SB 148 (SoDakLiberty Posts) – Authorize additional nursing facility beds for the Michael J. Fitzmaurice Veterans Home and to declare an emergency.

SoDakLiberty Stance: Undecided
Prime Sponsors: The Committee on Health and Human Services is the prime sponsor at the request of the Office of the Governor.

This would allow up to 76 beds at Michael J. Fitzmaurice Veterans Home.

This went through the Senate without a No vote.

SB 152 (SoDakLiberty Posts) – Enact the Peter Falk Act to ensure visitation of certain protected persons.

SoDakLiberty Stance: Undecided
Prime Sponsors: Sen Phil Jensen (R, Dist 33) and Rep Elizabeth May (R, Dist 27) are the prime sponsors.

I haven’t listened to committee testimony. Here is what I said about the bill before:

The Peter Falk Act makes it harder for adult children to be prevented from seeing someone they care about. This Act comes about from when Peter Falk at the end of his life was suffering dementia. Falk’s wife would not let her stepdaughter (Peter Falk’s daughter) see him during his final years.

I’m actually surprised this wasn’t brought forth as something from the Elder Abuse Task Force.

Here is what Section 1 of the Act says:

Except as described in section 2 of this Act, a guardian or conservator may not restrict a protected person’s right of communication, visitation, or interaction with other persons, including the right to receive visitors, telephone calls, or personal mail, unless the restriction is authorized by a court order. For purposes of this Act, other persons only includes the parents, children, and siblings of the protected person.

There are five other sections to the bill. But I don’t see any apparent red flags. This might be a good bill at a time when elder abuse has attained such attention.

SB 171 (SoDakLiberty Posts) – Authorize the limited use of certain types of medical marijuana.

SoDakLiberty Stance: Support
Prime Sponsors: The Committee on Health and Human Services is the prime sponsors.

This bill was hoghoused in Senate Health. The very long bill now has just three small sections. Now the bill would allow cannabinoid for a targeted treatment of intractable epilepsy. There are other conditions that could be helped by the use of  cannabinoid, but maybe this passing into law will show civilization won’t fall apart in SD by allowing people with certain conditions access to this drug.

This passed Senate Health 6-1 and the Senate floor 20-15.