Category Archives: 2016 SD Legislative Session

Regulation of Nursing and Assisted Living Beds Interim Committee meeting on Thurs Oct 27

32139330On Thursday, October 27, at 10:30 am CT the Regulation of Nursing and Assisted Living Beds Interim Committee will meet in Pierre. The meeting will be held in Room 413 of the State Capital building. The agenda for this meeting can be viewed hereSDPB will also provide live audio for anyone wishing to listen in on the meeting, an archive of the audio will also be available there after the meeting.

The previous meeting was held on September. Minutes from the September 8 meeting can be read here. Here are the action items coming out of the September meeting, which will basically be the agenda for the October meeting:

  • Reviewing the existing statutes and proposing changes will be addressed by the LRC staff
  • Sen William Shorma (R, Dist 16) and Sen Alan Solano (R, Dist 32) will work with LRC on creating incentives to bring more unlicensed beds into the pool
  • Rep Karen Soli (D, Dist 15) will work with LRC in researching ways to make a more robust RFP program and
    look at the continuum of care
  • Rep Wayne Steinhauer (R, Dist 9) and Rep Roger Hunt (R, Dist 25) will work with LRC in drafting legislation based
    on the North Dakota system of using free enterprise for distribution of nursing home beds
  • Representative Hunt will work with LRC staff to draft legislation creating a rural recruitment and retention program to assist nursing home facilities with staffing

No draft legislation is posted on the LRC website yet. Hopefully after this meeting any draft legislation will be available for the public to see.

Payment Methodologies for Medicaid Providers Interim Study meeting on Tues Oct 25

41811051On Tuesday, October 25, the Payment Methodologies for Medicaid Providers Study will meet in Pierre for its fifth and final meeting. The meeting begins at 10:00 am. The agenda for this meeting can be viewed hereSDPB will also provide live audio for anyone wishing to listen in on the meeting, an archive of the audio will also be available there after the meeting.

The previous meeting was held on September 27. The minutes from that meeting can be viewed here. I have been listening to the audio from these meetings, but am refraining from blogging too much about them until draft legislation is ready for viewing.

The agenda for the October 25 meeting can be viewed here. There isn’t any draft legislation listed in the documents for the meeting. But in the previous meeting the members were asked to submit any possible draft legislation by October 10; and by October 17 the draft legislation would be composed and sent back to the committee members. Hopefully in this meeting we will find out what legislation is being brought forth in the 2017 legislation session.

 

Full agenda for the GOAC meeting on Tues Oct 18

33372582On Tuesday, October 17, the Government Operations and Audit Committee (GOAC) will have its fourth meeting of the 2016 interim session. The meeting will begin at 9:00 AM CT in Room 413 of the State Capitol Building. The previous meeting was held on August 23. My post prior to that meeting can be viewed here, and the minutes from that meeting can be viewed hereSDPB will provide live audio for anyone wishing to listen in on the meeting, an archive of the audio will also be available there after the meeting.

This meeting has a full agenda. Here is a brief overview of what is on the agenda:

Item 1 – Department of Transportation to provide an update on the completion of the railroad maintenance agreement by Dakota Southern Railway Company

I haven’t really followed rail maintenance items, so have no comments on this agenda item.

Item 2 – Bureau of Human Resources to discuss health care impacts relating to Sanford Health’s announcement that they are leaving Dakotacare and Avera Health medical plans

This move from Sanford made pretty big news in a South Dakota a couple of months ago. Here is an excerpt from a KELO story:

The company says Avera’s DakotaCare wanted to maintain broad network products that include Sanford providers, but denied Sanford Health Plan the same ability to offer broad-network products that include Avera providers.

Item 3 – Bureau of Administration to provide an update on the Obligation Recovery Center

Since I have been following the happenings with the Obligation Recovery Center (ORC) pretty closely I will be paying extra attention to this agenda item; but I don’t really expect anything of value to come out of this meeting. The documents for this meeting includes the yearly ORC report. There really isn’t anything new to read from this report because it is for Fiscal Year 2016, which ended before the ORC was actually operational.

Item 4 – Attorney General Jackley to discuss civil and criminal implications associated with the recently passed legislation regarding conflicts of interest

This is an interesting agenda item. Back in April I looked at Jackley and the new conflicts of interest legislation. It should be interesting to see what Jackley has to say now; especially since it is a topic he might run on for Governor in 2018.

Item 5 – Bureau of Finance and Management to provide an update on progress made by the Internal Control Board

Back in July I looked closer at the Board of Internal Controls (BIC). I think more attention needs to be placed on this particular board. I’ve spoken with legislators that believe the board they signed into law only creates code of conduct and conflict of interest policies. But that doesn’t seem to be the cased, it appears to be so much more. Actually I think Appropriations may be trying to implement a LEAN audit on BIT that could possibly be a doubling of effort for what the BIC is aimed to do.  This particular agenda item may be worth paying attention to in order to get an idea if the BIC is doing what the legislature actually believes they passed into law.

Item 6 – Governor’s Office of Economic Development – Annual report of activity relating to the Building South Dakota Fund

This of course is the special slush fund the Governor’s Office has to spend money on economic development. This is an area I wish the legislature would end altogether…

Item 7 – Human Services Center to provide an update on the operations of the facility

The Human Services Center in Yankton is the spotlight of this agenda item. I won’t go into detail here, because of an upcoming post on the topic.

Item 8 – Department of Legislative Audit to discuss the FY16 GOAC Blue Book and determine if the Committee has in interest in reviewing further any particular fund

 

Ag Land Assessment Task Force Meeting on Mon Oct 17

cow in a prairieOn Monday, October 17, the Agricultural Land Assessment Implementation and Oversight Advisory Task Force will hold its second meeting of 2016 interim session in Pierre. The meeting will be held in Room 413 of the State Capital building. SDPB will also provide live audio for anyone wishing to listen in on the meeting, an archive of the audio will also be available there after the meeting.

Before looking at agenda items for the October 17 meeting it might be worth looking at a few things to come out of the September 12 meeting.

Takeaways from the Sept 12 Minutes

Here is an interesting portion found in the opening remarks portion of the minutes:

Senator Jim Peterson said as land valuations reach full productivity status, noncrop land being used as pastureland is being taxed at a rate that is close to its income value, especially in West River. The increased taxes are sometimes equivalent to what a landowner receives in cash rent.

Sen Jim Peterson (D, Dist 4) brings up something I’ve heard from many farmers and ranchers (mostly ranchers). This is not a new topic. But it is an issue I believe is going to come to a full head in the 2017 or 2018 legislative session. Legislators better be researching this topic!

Another area of the minutes from Sen Peterson:

Senator Peterson believes the half-cent sales tax increase and the new education formula has benefited larger schools more than smaller school districts. He thinks those smaller districts may have to increase their property taxes to provide sufficient revenue for teachers’ salary increases.

This may cause even more squeeze upon those land owners close to losing money on cash rent.

There is actually quite a bit more from that meeting worth highlighting. But since I know legislation is coming out of those discussions I will wait to blog about them until I have legislation to actually refer to.

October 17 Agenda

The October 17 agenda really only has two items. First there is a discussion about Factors for Determining Agricultural Income Value with Matthew Elliott, Economics Department, SDSU. And then the bulk of the meeting will revolve around draft legislation. Last year the Task Force was able to get 2 of 3 proposed bills passed into law. This year I expect the Task Force to be a bit more aggressive.

Substance Abuse Prevention Study meeting on Tues Oct 11

Screenshot of the CrimeSolutions.gov website.
Screenshot of the CrimeSolutions.gov website.

On Tuesday, October 11, at 10:00 am CT the Substance Abuse Prevention Study interim committee will meet in Pierre. The meeting will be held in Room 413 of the State Capital building. SDPB will also provide live audio for anyone wishing to listen in on the meeting, an archive of the audio will also be available there after the meeting.

The minutes from the August 17 meeting can be found here. There are also a LOT of documents available from that meeting posted here.  One very interesting part of the minutes is during the first part of the meeting where Tim Purdon, former United States Attorney for North Dakota, was giving his presentation. This from the meetings minutes:

Mr. Purdon pointed out that tribal sovereignty limits what the South Dakota Legislature can do in regards to law enforcement on the reservations; and 200 years’ experience has proven we cannot arrest our way out of problems. The North Dakota corrections budget doubled in just a few years and its federal prison budget is expanding, which is not fiscally sustainable.

I hope that if anything comes out of this study it is that continuing to make criminals out of people suffering through a meth addiction will not solve anything. Purdon recommends the committee look at sources such as crimeprevention.gov for evidence-based programs that actually work. That website doesn’t come up for me, but crimesolutions.gov does. I haven’t looked too much into the site yet, but I will keep it in mind in case any legislation is created to form one of the programs off the website.

The October meeting will revolve in a large part around proposed legislation. During the August meeting it was decided that the committee initiate legislation dealing with the pharmaceutical database tracking. The October meeting will include Melissa DeNoon, who is the Prescription Drug Monitoring Program Director for the South Dakota State Board of Pharmacy. It seems more and more likely some sort of prescription database legislation will come forth. Personally I think trying to further restrict access is going to do no good at all, it will just change how the makers of meth get their product…

Also during the August meeting the committee decided to have the LRC contact the organizations that gave presentations during the August meeting to determine the costs of their proposals.  It is possible legislation will come forth from the LRC at the October meeting originating from those presentations.

Payment Methodologies for Medicaid Providers Study today at 10:00am

MedicaidToday, Tuesday, September 27, the Payment Methodologies for Medicaid Providers Study will meet in Pierre for its third meeting. The meeting begins at 10:00 am. The agenda for this meeting can be viewed hereSDPB will also provide live audio for anyone wishing to listen in on the meeting, an archive of the audio will also be available there after the meeting.

Before looking at the agenda for the new meeting it might be worth looking very briefly at the previous meeting.

August 17-18 meeting

This is a summer study I really haven’t payed too much attention to. The last meeting was on August 17th and 18th. There is a LOT to learn from the minutes of that meeting. Here are a couple of takeaways that may be worth keeping in mind as the 2017 legislative session comes closer:

Representative Hunhoff asked how states have met the challenge of providing community based programming in rural areas. Mr. Bergman replied that most states push community services to the county level and in rural areas for certain services counties will partner with neighboring counties to provide adequate care.

Rep Jean Hunhoff (R, Dist 18) asked a question that had been on my mind as I read through the minutes. The answer is a route I could definitely see the legislature looking at. Over the last few years the legislature has pushed more and more financial burdens on the counties without shifting the revenues to cover those costs. Will this be another area the legislature decides to do so?

Here is a question from Rep Fred Romkema (R, Dist 31).

Representative Romkema asked what are currently the “low hanging” fruit that the committee could effectively take action on this year. Mr. Bergman replied changing the tasks nurses may delegate would be the easiest change and would allow nurses to train and supervise others to provide care. The state needs to look into providing home-based services by re-evaluating the current waivers and expanding the waivers to provide alternatives to nursing homes. The more the state can divert individuals from going into a nursing home, the more money the state will save in the long term. The state needs to enhance its home and community based services.

Expanding home-based services will likely come up in some form as legislation for the reasons stated above. This will also help the state get out of hot water with the federal government; which says SD has too many people in nursing homes.

September 27 meeting

The agenda for the September 27 meeting can be viewed here. Instead of focusing on the agenda I would rather look at something Bob Mercer posted just this morning:

The Republican-dominated Legislature, during the 1995 return of Republican Bill Janklow as governor, approved a 4 percent gross receipts tax on medical services and then, on second thought, struck it from taking effect. The Legislature even tried to create a special referendum but that line was dropped after Janklow received an advisory opinion from the South Dakota Supreme Court. The court’s opinion is here. The idea of a medical tax hasn’t died, however. The Legislature’s interim committee studying payment methodologies for Medicaid providers is set to discuss health care provider taxes today during its afternoon work. You can see the agenda and find the live-audio link here.

The whole article from Mercer is worth reading. I have heard some whispers that new revenue will be sought by this interim committee. Perhaps today’s meeting will have details on what a new source of tax revenue will look like.

River Basin Natural Resource District Oversight Advisory Task Force on Tues Sept 20

On Tuesday, September 20, the River Basin Natural Resource District Oversight Advisory Task Force will meet for the second time in 2016. The River Basin Task Force was created in 2015 via SB 2 (SoDakLiberty Posts). The river basin natural resource districts that are formed by this bill will create water management plans and add a new level of elected positions and non-elected bureaucrats around the state. This meeting will begin at 10:00 in Pierre.  SDPB will also provide live audio for anyone wishing to listen in on the meeting, an archive of the audio will also be available there after the meeting.

The previous meeting was held on August 16. My post prior to that meeting can be read here and the minutes can be viewed here.

The agenda for the September 20 meeting is posted here. One of the agenda items is a review of the districts and sub-district boundaries. A document has been posted for this meeting showing the latest version of the Natural Resource District maps.  Here is the latest version of the statewide map showing the proposed districts:

SD Natural Resource District Map Aug 2016
SD Natural Resource District Map Aug 2016

The biggest part of the meeting is likely to revolve around four proposed pieces of legislation. Here is a very brief overview of the four pieces of draft legislation. I will wait until the final draft is completed before I look too deep at these proposed bills.

Draft Legislation – Boundaries

The actual draft legislation relating to boundaries can be viewed here. Basically this would update the various River District boundaries already set in Chapter 46A-19 of South Dakota codified law.

Draft Legislation – Election

The draft legislation for conducting elections for the river basic district councils can be read here.  The first election would occur in 2018. Each district would have six council members, with 2 each coming from each sub-district. The legislation also says each council member should be a registered voter in the subdistrict they are seeking to be elected into. Registered voters of the subdistrict are also allowed to vote in the election. This is a sticky point of the proposed legislation. Some want only people living within the district to have voting rights, but that would leave some farmers unable to vote for a council member who may dramatically impact their operations in the future. The residency of council members and voters will likely be a sticky point in committee during the legislative session.

Draft Legislation – Procedure to Change Boundaries

The draft legislation to change boundaries can be viewed here. The biggest part of any change is to ensure current boundaries, such as township boundaries, are maintained within the same district.

Draft Legislation – Vacancies

Vacancies have come up as an issue at a couple of committee meetings. The draft legislation to provide for replacing vacancies can be viewed here.

Legislative Planning meeting today in Pierre

Today, September 19, at 10:15 am the Legislative Planning committee will meet in Room 413 of the State Capitol buildingSDPB will also provide live audio for anyone wishing to listen in on the meeting; an archive of the audio will also be available there after the meeting.

The Performance Management Review Process is still one of the big agenda items for this committee.  Due to other writing projects I haven’t had time to look into what is actually going on in this meeting. I will simply copy/paste the agenda here and possibly blog about portions of the meetings at a later date.

Here is what is on the agenda:

  • 10:15 AM
    • Call to Order
    • Determination of Quorum
    • Approval of Minutes—August 1, 2016
  • 10:20 AM
    • Workforce Development for Veterans and their families
    • South Dakota Joining Forces (SDJF)  -Mr. Larry Zimmerman,
    • Secretary, Department of Veterans Affairs
  • 11:00 AM
    • Research Parks and their impact on the state’s economy
    • Mr. Dwaine Chapel, President, Research Park at SDSU
    • Mr. Rich Naser, President, USD Discovery District
  • 12:00 PM Working Lunch
  • Performance Management Review Process
    • 12:45 PM Department of Agriculture Mr. Mike Jaspers, Secretary
    • 1:45 PM Department of Game, Fish and Parks Mr. Kelly Hepler, Secretary
    • 2:30 PM Department of Environment & Natural Resources Mr. Steve Pirner, Secretary
  • 3:15 PM Committee discussion
    Planning for final meeting
  • 3:30 PM Adjourn

Special Legislative Task Force meeting today

Today, September 19, at 9:30 am the Special Legislative Task Force will convene in Room 413 of the State Capitol Building. SDPB will also provide live audio for anyone wishing to listen in on the meeting; an archive of the audio will also be available there after the meeting. I really don’t know a lot about this meeting, but maybe after listening to the audio I’ll blog more about it.

This meeting is set up to report on SDCL 13-51-1.3 every ten years. SDCL 13-51-1.3 is labeled as “Sioux Falls site for instructional, research, and service programs”. It was passed into law back in 2006 as HB 1238:

HB 1238 (SoDakLiberty Posts) – Authorize the Board of Regents to purchase certain real property for the sole purpose of providing a site for the operation of instructional, research and service programs delivered through institutions established by the Legislature and governed by the Board of Regents, to make an appropriation therefor, to require the Board of Regents to submit a comprehensive plan and to make certain reports, and to declare an emergency.

Part of that bill required a special legislative task force to “review the appropriateness of the provisions of § 13-51-1.3 and make recommendation to the Legislature regarding any revisions, additions, or deletions to the various conditions contained in § 13-51-1.3.”

Here is the actual content of § 13-51-1.3:

13-51-1.3.   Sioux Falls site for instructional, research, and service programs–Limitations on use. The expenditures authorized by chapter 106 of the 2006 Session Laws shall be solely for the purposes of providing a site for the operation of instructional, research and service programs delivered through institutions established by the Legislature and governed by the Board of Regents. The Board of Regents may only use the property for the primary purpose of education or research. It is the intent of the Board of Regents and the Eighty-first Legislature that the Board of Regents may not without express legislative authorization:
             (1)      Organize the programs delivered at this site into a separate degree-granting institution;
             (2)      Erect student residence facilities on the site;
             (3)      Construct facilities on the site for use as intercollegiate athletic practice or competition;
             (4)      Establish intercollegiate athletic teams at the site;
             (5)      Sell any portion of the property acquired pursuant to chapter 106 of the 2006 Session Laws unless the property is appraised and advertised and offered for sale at public auction. No portion of the property may be sold except at public sale and for an amount less than the appraised value;
             (6)      Offer courses taught on the property at any rate other than the self-support tuition rate;
             (7)      Lease for nonagricultural purposes more than ten percent of the surface area of the property to third parties;
             (8)      Lease to third parties more than ten percent of the useable space within any building constructed with state funds appropriated by the Legislature; or
             (9)      Permit any free-standing commercial facility to be constructed on the property or any commercial facility to be located within any building constructed with state funds unless the commercial facility is reasonably needed to meet the convenience and needs of the students and instructors using the building.

The report will be given by Dr. Michael Rush, Executive Director and CEO, SD Board of Regents. I haven’t had time to actually research what this law actually does, so after hearing testimony I’ll decide whether to report further upon the report.

Ag Land Assessment Task Force meeting on Mon Sept 12

21669787On Monday, September 12, the Agricultural Land Assessment Implementation and Oversight Advisory Task Force will hold its first meeting of 2016 in Pierre. The meeting will be held in Room 413 of the State Capital building. SDPB will also provide live audio for anyone wishing to listen in on the meeting.

Before looking at agenda items for the September 12 meeting it might be worth a glance at what bills the task force brought forth for the 2016 legislative session.

2016 Task Force bills

Last year this task force filed three bills for the legislative session, and more are expected this year. Two of the bills prefiled by the task force in 2015 were signed into law. Those laws were:

HB 1007 (SoDakLiberty Posts) –Make an appropriation to revise and update the data and methods used to determine the agricultural land production capacity and to declare an emergency.

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

The bill the task force prefiled and didn’t get passed was:

SB 4 (SoDakLiberty Posts) – Provide for the assessment of certain agricultural land as noncropland.

A version of SB 4 is likely to come up again.

Review of the School District General Fund Formula

The first agenda item is a “Review of the School District General Fund Formula”. The presentation will be presented by Tami Darnall, Chief Financial Officer, Department of Education. It is probably worth listening to the meeting for anyone that wishes to have an overview of how the formula works.

Report on the 2017 Assessment Information

The second agenda item is “Ag Land Assessment – Report on the 2017 Assessment Information”. This will be presented by Michael Houdyshell, Director, Division of Property and Special Taxes, Department of Revenue. There is a table included in the meetings documents showing the productivity change in valuation by county for 2017.

Progress Report on the Soil Ratings Study

The last big agenda item is a “Progress Report on the Soil Ratings Study”. This is being presented by Matthew Elliott, Economics Department, SDSU. This would appear to come out of HB 1007 mentioned above. Here is how the study was explained durying the December 7, 2015, Task Force meeting

Mr. Baatz stated that the draft proposes a general fund appropriation of $175,000 for the purpose of requesting South Dakota State University’s (SDSU) Department of Economics to conduct research concerning the data and methods used to determine the agricultural land production capacity and update the data used in the soil tables.

Now it is time to see if this study is paying off. The legislation was passed with an emergency clause so the study work could be started right away.

Buffer Strip Legislation

During the 2016 legislative session Governor Daugaard vetoed a bill that would have given a tax break to buffer strips along lakes, rivers, and streams. That bill was SB 136 (SoDakLiberty Posts) and did not come out of this task force (although maybe it should have). Dakota Free Press notes the governor is going to bring a draft of an alternative to SB 136 to this meeting. That should be interesting to see how he handles this after having vetoed the 2016 version of the bill.