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SD lawmakers strike deal to defy Noem, pass $5.8B budget

PIERRE, S.D. (AP) — The South Dakota Legislature has passed a proposal to give state lawmakers more control over how federal funds are spent, defying Gov. Kristi Noem and clearing the way for the House and Senate to find agreement on a $5.8 billion state budget.

The Legislature came to an agreement about federal spending against the wishes of the Governor. The proposed measure simultaneously gives and takes away power from the executive branch.

HB1281 says federal funds that come to the state for new uses would require a special committee of lawmakers to sign off on the executive branch’s plan. This would need to be done before the money can be allocated. Recurring or continuing projects are not subject to this new rule.

Governor Kristi Noem is firmly against what the bill does. She says it isn’t good government and goes too far.

“We had worked on an amendment to this bill that would have been acceptable and workable,” she said.  “The leadership of the House and the appropriations, and the House rejected that.” Noem continued, “This bill is bad government and it’s going to slow it down from people who utilize some federal funds to help individuals in our state.”

The conference committee included a sunset in the bill, which removes it from effect next year. This would give the Legislature the opportunity to assess if the bill worked as intended.

The bipartisan proposal passed on the penultimate day of the legislative session with over two-thirds support in each chamber.

Lawmakers from both chambers will have the opportunity to override a potential veto on March 28th.



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