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Local News Archives for 2020-01

Bill looking to repeal "irreconcilable differences" as a reason for divorce filed in Pierre

The South Dakota legislature has had a bill introduced which would eliminate “irreconcilable difference” as a cause for a couple’s divorce in the state.  According to state law, a couple can seek divorce for the following reasons adultery, extreme cruelty, willful desertion, willful neglect, habitual intemperance or irreconcilable difference.  Should this law pass it would replace irreconcilable difference with criminal conviction that resulted in incarceration as an adequate reason.  The bill has been referred to the House Judiciary committee.  District 2’s Brock Greenfield, Lana Greenfield and Kaleb Weis are all cosponsors of the bill. 


Bill looking to define marriage as between man and woman filed in South Dakota legislature

The time for unlimited bill introduction at the South Dakota state legislature has passed, but one got in before the deadline seeking to bring same sex marriage back into question.  HB 1215 was submitted by Rapid City Republican Tony Randolph and if made law would prohibit the state from endorsing or enforcing certain policies regarding domestic relationships.  The law reads the state May not enforce, endorse or favor policies that permit marriage between anyone other than a man and a woman.  So far the bill has no cosponsors, is likely unconstitutional with the US Supreme court’s decision in Obergefell v. Hodges in 2015 and has been opposed by the ACLU of South Dakota. 


House passes controversial HB1057 trans legislation

The South Dakota House of Representatives voted 46-23 in favor of HB 1057, a bill which would make it illegal for physicians to prescribe gender reassignment medication to children under 16.  District 3 Representatives Drew Dennert and Carl Perry were both yes votes. 

 

The bill still has an uncertain future as it is expected to tougher time getting through the senate.  On top of that, the ACLU of South Dakota has already promised it will sue the state should it be made law and Governor Kristi Noem has expressed concerns about this piece of legislation. 

 

Republican house leader Lee Qualm says this bill is about protecting children....

 

 

 

 

Democrat House leader Jamie Smith says these bills hurt children, but also take time away from more pressing issues South Dakotan's care  about...

 

 


Senator Thune against calling witnesses in impeachment trail

(KBHB - Sturgis, SD) The opening statements in the impeachment trial against the President have concluded and now Senators will have a couple days to ask written questions to both the House managers - who are serving as prosecutors - and the White House legal team.

 

South Dakota Senator John Thune talked to reporters today about whether or not he believes new witnesses, like John Bolton, should be called after the Q and A portion is over…

 

 

 

 

Thune says he doesn’t want to hear from either Hunter or Joe Biden either…

 

 

 

Thune says he’s not sure if there are enough votes to move to a witness testimony phase. He says that may be realized over the next two days of Q and A


Gov. Noem announces second attempt at "riot boosting" law

Governor Kristi Noem today sent the final version of her anti-rioting legislation to legislators, tribal leaders, state’s attorneys, and other stakeholders.

“As governor, my duty is to protect South Dakota’s people and property,” said Noem. “In unprecedented fashion, consulting with stakeholders, we’ve put together legislation that promotes law and order, protects the community against violence, and safeguards our state’s legitimate interest in protecting our people and their property, all while upholding constitutional rights of free speech and lawful assembly. I look forward to working with the legislature to make sure we give our law enforcement the tools they need to keep our people and their property safe.”

Noem’s legislation accomplishes three objectives:

  1. Repeals the sections that the federal court struck down in a September 2019 decision;
  2. Replaces those sections with a new crime of incitement to riot within the confines of the law; and
  3. Updates the riot and riot boosting civil actions to mirror the updated riot and incitement to riot crimes

Oglala Sioux Tribe announces member referendum legalize marijuana and sell alcohol

The Oglala Sioux Tribe has announced its members will vote in March on whether or not marijuana should be legalized on the Pine Ridge Indian Reservation and should they begin serving alcohol in their casinos.  Elections Commision executive Sandra Old Horse tells the Rapid City Journal, the referendums must past bya  simple majority and are binding, meaning tribal leaders must implement them. 


2019 could be lowest year ever for SD vehicle fatalities

The South Dakota Department of Public Safety (DPS) today announced that South Dakota is projected to have recorded the lowest number of motor vehicle fatalities in state history during 2019.

  

To date, 102 roadway fatalities have been recorded for 2019. Since the department began keeping records in 1947, the previous low was 111 fatalities in 2011. 

 

DPS Secretary Craig Price announced the preliminary numbers during today’s presentation at the House Transportation Committee meeting. While final numbers may still change, officials believe the 2019 final numbers will establish a new record low. 

 

“We are encouraged to see our safety messages and enforcement efforts having a big impact across South Dakota,” said Price. “Alongside this good news, though, we remember that even one roadway death is too many. We will continue working to develop our safety protocols and communication strategies in order to continue driving this number down.” 

 

South Dakota continues to be among the nation’s leaders in states with the lowest five-year average for motor vehicle fatalities. Secretary Price said the state’s safety efforts have been aided by the fact that the public is making better driving choices coupled with enhanced vehicle safety and road designs.

 

“Our Office of Highway Safety uses programs like Lesson Learned and the Jim Reaper safe driving campaign to encourage drivers to slow down, wear seat belts, and not drive impaired,” the Secretary said. “Meanwhile the Highway Patrol and local law enforcement enforce traffic laws and uses their contacts with the public to stress safe driving. We are trying to encourage safe driving behaviors, and that requires action from all of us.” 

 

Secretary Price said those efforts will continue in 2020.

 

“It is a new year, so we start over again,” he said. “Our message is simple – make the right choices every time you get behind the wheel.”

 

In 2018, the state recorded 130 fatalities.


Dustin Lynch announced as State Fair headliner

The South Dakota State Fair and Legend Seeds are proud to announce modern country music, top of the charts artist, Dustin Lynch to perform at the State Fair grandstand on Saturday, September 5.
 
With a string of hits stretching back to 2012, a red hot live-performance reputation, and a fan-base that’s growing exponentially, Dustin Lynch is one of the hottest acts in modern country music. And with his third album for Broken Bow Records –CURRENT MOOD–he’s done flying under the radar. Lynch is currently hitting the charts with his single “Ridin’ Roads’ off his newest album – TULLAHOMA – released in January 2020. 
 
“I’m a little nervous,” Lynch admits with a laugh. “But the last thing I want for chapter three is ‘Oh, this is just a new take on what we’ve heard for the last few years.’ I hope people see a side of me they haven’t seen yet.”
 
Lynch’s hits include “Ridin’ Roads", “Mind Reader”, “Good Girl”, “Cowboys and Angels”, “Small Town Boy”, and “Hell of a Night”.
 
Online, Lynch has also hit the number one spot on the iTunes Country Albums Chart while racking up three million track downloads, more than 245 million Spotify streams, and 113 million YouTube/VEVO views. His social-media following tops 2.5 million, and he’s not connecting with those rabid fans through music alone. Lynch’s own Stay Country clothing line puts his personal style in their hands, and national TV appearances have highlighted his good-natured charisma.
 
Meanwhile, those same fans have watched him become one of the most dynamic performers on the road. Cranking up massive crowds while opening for stadium-rocking icons like Luke Bryan, Florida Georgia Line, and Brad Paisley, Lynch has played for millions while developing an unparalleled onstage potency.
 
“Dustin Lynch brings an unbridled enthusiasm to his performances,” said Peggy Besch, SD State Fairgrounds manager. “We’re looking forward to having him bring that same vibrant energy to the stage at the State Fair.”
 
Members of the media can download images here.
 
A pre-sale on VIP tickets will begin May 18, followed by backrest holders on June 8 and June 11 for Friends of the Fair. General public ticket sales will begin June 15.
 
The 2020 South Dakota State Fair will run from Thursday, September 3, through Monday, September 7. Channel Seeds Preview night will be Wednesday, September 2. This year’s theme is “Perfect Vision of Fun.” For more information on State Fair events, contact the Fair office at 800-529-0900, visit www.sdstatefair.com or find them on Facebook or Twitter.
 
Agriculture is a major contributor to South Dakota’s economy, generating $32.5 billion in annual economic activity and employing over 132,000 South Dakotans. The South Dakota Department of Agriculture's mission is to promote, protect, and preserve South Dakota agriculture for today and tomorrow. Visit us online at sdda.sd.gov or find us on Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter.

 


Vote on HB 1057 pushed back to Wednesday

HB 1057, a bill which would criminalize prescribing gender reassignment treatment to children and teens under 16 years old, was scheduled to be voted on by the full house Monday but it has been re-scheduled.  The bill will now be on the agenda Wednesday when the house convenes at 2:00 p.m.  Speaker of the House  Steve Haugaard told the Argus Leader in Sioux Falls, the postponement was done at the request of the bill’s main sponsor Fred Deutsch of Watertown to help accommodate his schedule. 


Two arrested in connection to string of thefts in Watertown

Two people have been arrested in Watertown in connection to a string of thefts.  According to Dakota News Now, police Sunday arrested Justin Sell and Sarina West.  Police allege the two were involved in a string of thefts from unlocked vehicles between last Wednesday and Friday.  Both face felony grand theft charges and are currently being held in custody.  Further charges are possible. 


Update: No arrests made in Saturday morning shooting death in Aberdeen

Update: No arrests have been made stemming from an early morning shooting in Aberdeen Saturday which left one man dead.  Authorities say interviews are being conducted and the situation remains under investigation.  Police responded to shots fired at 4:04 a.m. Saturday in the 1100 block of South Washington Street.  Upon arrival officers found an unresponsive man who had been shot multiple times.  They took him to a local hospital where he was pronounced dead.  Preliminary autopsy results are expected early this week. 

 

Original Story : One person was killed in an overnight shooting in Aberdeen.  According to a release from the Aberdeen Police Department, shots fired were reported around 4:08 a.m. Saturday in the 1100 block of South Washington Street.  Upon arrival, officers found an unresponsive male who had been shot multiple times.  He was pronounced dead at Avera St. Luke’s and his body is being sent to Grand Forks North Dakota for an autopsy.  Police say there is no danger to the public and the shooter has been identified.  Identities of those involved have not yet been released. 


Bill filed in SD legislature banning commercial surrogacy

A bill has been filed in the South Dakota legislator and is awaiting assignment that would outlaw commercial surrogacy in South Dakota. HB 1096 has not yet been assisgned to a committee. Surrogacy is an arrangement made between adults where a woman agrees to bear a child for another person or persons who will be the parents after birth.  District 3 Senator Al Novstrop is the only senator on the bill and it has a total of five co-sponsors.  If made into law commercial surrogacy would be made illegal along with facilitating a commercial surrogacy. 


Sturgis man uninjured after vehicle hit by train

(KBHB - Sturgis, SD) A 77-year-old male escaped serious injury after his Jeep Cherokee was struck by a train in Sturgis Thursday night.

 

Sturgis Police Chief Geody VanDewater says the man was traveling west bound on Ball Park Road, and attempted to cross the tracks when he was struck by a northbound train.

 

VanDewater says the train struck the vehicle on the drivers side door, pushing it at least 700 feet before coming to a stop near the top of McNenny Drive.

 

VanDewater says the male was alert and conscious when EMS personnel arrived on scene. He was transported to Sturgis Regional Hospital for observation, but didn't appear to have suffered any major injuries. His name was not released.

 

The collision ended up blocking several city streets that cross the tracks, including Ball Park, Vanocker Canyon and Otter Road.

 

Two wreckers were brought in to remove the vehicle as not to do any damage to the tracks.

VanDewater says railroad officials needed to inspect the train and the tracks before they could they could let it continue on.

 

The accident happened around 5:40 p.m.

 

The train was blowing it's whistle and traveling at the correct rate of speed when traveling through a populated area.

 

VanDewater reminds people to always look both ways and yield at railroad crossings, especially those with no warning lights. There are no warning lights at the Ball Park Road crossing.

He says the train's engineer noticed the vehicle and applied the brakes before striking the Jeep, but VanDewater says "trains can't stop on a dime."


Avera accepts $5 million anonymous gift

Bob Sutton, Avera President and CEO, announced on Friday that Avera accepted a $5 million gift from an anonymous donor.

 

“We worked with a generous donor who wanted to make a significant investment to improve patient care and safety through current projects, while also benefiting individuals and families for the long-term,” Sutton said. “We are thrilled that this donor chose to invest in Avera. We worked closely with this donor to ensure that dollars are stewarded toward those projects identified as priority areas for both the donor and the health system.”

 

The generous donor requested that $1 million of the donation be designated as a matching gift to support Coordinated Care, which helps patients – including those employed by Avera – overcome barriers to better health. Avera’s Coordinated Care teams specialize in seeing trends and patterns that predict rising risk, and initiating or redirecting care.

 

“We are reminded that Jesus himself walks through our hospital doors every day. When we care for the least of his people, we care for him,” said Sutton. “It’s not enough to let the poor, the sick and the hungry seek us out, we must go into our communities and begin the healing process in their homes, for it is in doing this that we find Jesus.”

 

Another priority project identified by this generous donor is security assessments and updates at facilities across the system. Enhancing security contributes to a more positive healing environment for patients and more positive work environment for employees.

 

The donor also requested part of the donation be used to support the effort to unify all philanthropic efforts across Avera.

 

“A gift like this only serves to strengthen our philanthropic efforts and fulfill the ‘one Avera’ promise to donors, patients and families,” said Sutton. “We’re incredibly grateful.”

 


While Senate discusses impeachment, The House still looking to legislate

(WNAX - Yankton, SD) While the Senate is focused on the impeachment trial, the House is attempting to work through other legislative issues.

 

South Dakota Congressman Dusty Johnson says there is interest in doing something about the high cost of prescription drugs...

 

 

 

 

Johnson says the US is paying for most drug development costs world wide...

 

 

 

 

Johnson says another reason prices are so high is because drug companies can halt the distribution of generic drugs...

 

 

 

Johnson says Speaker Nancy Pelosi introduced a competing prescription drug bill that he can’t support.


SD legislature considering a bill which would prohibit cities and counties from banning certain plastic items

South Dakota Lawmakers are also considering a bill which would make it illegal to enforce plastic bans.  Should a city or county seek to limit the use of plastic bags or straws for any reason, SB 54 would take that ability away from them.  The bill also includes limits on glass bans, but does not limit cities from restricting glass bottles from parks and recreation sites. 


House State Affairs Committee passes legislation outlawing transitioning procedures and medication for SD teens

The South Dakota House State Affairs Committee voted in favor of house bill 1057 Wednesday via an 8-5 vote.  The bill would criminalize medical professionals from providing gender reassignment procedures and medications for minors in South Dakota.

 

Before passage three major amendments were offered and added to the bill including, changing the classification of the infraction from a felony to a misdemeanor, limiting the scope of medical professionals who might be targeted and lowering the age of those who cannot receive said treatment from 18 to younger than 16. 

 

The bill’s primary sponsor, Rep. Fred Deutsch of Watertown, collected a host of proponents, mostly from out of state to speak in favor of the bill saying these procedures are not considered medical in nature...

 

 

 

 

Opposing the legislation included endocrinologists, other medical professionals, the ACLU of South Dakota, the South Dakota Chamber of Commerce and at least one trans teen. 

 

Representatives from Sanford Health spoke in opposition of the bill including Mitchell Rave, a lobbyist for Sanford.  Rave called the bill an overreach of government and insinuated this is a solution looking for a problem...

 

 

 

 

A 17-year-old Sioux Falls student Quincy Park spoke against the bill as well.  Quincy identifies as non-binary, using they, them, their pronouns.  Quincy testified medication, such as hormone blockers, which this bill would outlaw for the use of gender reassignment, helped them feel like their self for the first time in years...

 

 

 

 

 

Following opponent and proponent testimony the committee began debate on the bill before ultimate passage.  Rep. John Hansen of Dell Rapids says it’s the government’s job to protect children...

 

 

 

 

Voting went as follows:

Yea’s - Hanson (R D-25), Jensen (R D-16), Qualm (R D-21), Dennert (R D-23), Beal (R D-12), Goodwin (R D-30), Gosch (R D-23), Haugaard (R D-10),

 

Nay’s - McCleery (D D-01), Peterson (R D-19), Anderson (R D-16), Diedrich (R D-34), Smith (D D-15)


Aberdeen Chamber seeking rebranding proposals

The Aberdeen Area Chamber of Commerce is accepting requests for proposals (RFPs) from interested parties for rebranding of the logo and slogan for the Aberdeen community. For more information or to receive the RFP form, contact Lisa Anderson at the Chamber by emailing lisa@aberdeen-chamber.com or contacting the Chamber at (605) 225-2860.


Yankton man found guilty of murder in the death of Yankton woman who grew up in Aberdeen

A Yankton man has been found guilty of murder in the death of 46-year-old Tamara LaFramboise, a Yankton woman who grew up in Aberdeen.  45-year-old Stephen Falkenburg was found guilty of second-degree murder and first degree manslaughter Tuesday.  The charges carry a mandatory life sentence and up to a $50,000 fine.  Sentencing is scheduled for March 2nd.  Authorities argued Falkenburg murdered LaFramboise on March 1st 2019 and that he traveled to Michigan later that month to the dispose of the body.  Part of LaFramboise remains were found March 16th in Menominee county Michigan. 


City fire officials reminding residents to clear slow around hydrants

Aberdeen Fire and Rescue is seeking to remind residents, they must clear snow around fire hydrants on their property.  According to fire chief Randy Meister, snow should be cleared at least four feet around all sides of the hydrant and the hydrant should be accessible from the street.  Residents with questions or having difficulty clearing said snow can contact 626-7048 for more information.


Aberdeen Fire and Rescue responds to false alarm

Aberdeen Fire and Rescue responded to a call at 509 S. Jackson Street Monday evening, which turned out to be a false alarm.  First responders went out at about 5:23 p.m. after receiving a call from a neighbor to the house in question about sparks flying and seeing smoke.  Upon further investigation no fire was found and a heating technician looked over the area in question and did not deem anything a problem.  Firefighters were at the location for about an hour. 


SD state parks see revenue dip in 2019

The South Dakota Game Fish and Parks Commission has announced state park and recreation areas brought in less money in 2019 than the previous year.  According to the numbers, South Dakota state parks saw fewer paid visitors and campers to the tune of four percent overall.  Parks officials tell the Associated Press, the likely cause of the downswing was spring flooding and excessive rain.  Game Fish and Parks will be interested to see if things can rebound as entry fees are set to go up this year at state parks and rec areas. 


PUblic rec areas closed due to weather

The Following are all closed for 1/17/2020:

 

YAPA-Youth Center

Outdoor Ice Rinks at Manor and Lincoln Parks

Indoor Ice Rinks at Odde


Gov. Noem calls for government offices to close due to weather

Gov. Kristi Noem has ordered a 1 p.m., local time closing for state government executive branch offices in 42 counties included in the current blizzard warning.

 

Those counties with state executive branch offices closing at 1 p.m. local time are:

 

Aurora, Beadle, Bon Homme, Brookings, Brown, Brule, Buffalo, Campbell, Charles Mix, Clark, Clay, Codington, Davison, Day, Deuel, Douglas, Edmunds, Faulk, Grant, Gregory, Hamlin, Hand, Hanson, Hutchinson, Hyde, Jerauld, Kingsbury, Lake, Lincoln, Marshall, McCook, McPherson, Miner, Minnehaha, Moody, Roberts, Sanborn, Spink, Turner, Union, Walworth and Yankton.              

                                                                        

State government executive branch offices in other non-blizzard warning counties remain open.

 

The public is encouraged to call the state government offices before traveling to that office.


ACT volunteer party postponed

ACT volunteer party postponed until Sunday at 6:30 p.m. 


Waubay officials warn Yellowstone trail could be dangerous in this weather

Strong southerly winds are blowing snow off of Bitter Lake and across Yellowstone Trail in Waubay, creating deep snow drifts along this road and it may become impassable as the day goes on.

 

Waubay Officials are encouraging motorist NOT to travel along Yellowstone Trail at this time. The deep snow may cause your vehicle to become stuck and it will be difficult for first responders to get to

you.


Chief Justice Gilbertson gives "State of The Judiciary" speech

(KCCR - Pierre, SD) South Dakota Supreme Court Chief Justice David Gilbertson, for the final time Wednesday gave his annual State of the Judiciary message to a joint session of the South Dakota Legislature.  Gilbertson says 11 years ago specialty courts were non-existent in the state and today they are making a difference…

 

 

 

 

Because of that success, Gilbertson is encouraging further expansion of diversion programs…

 

 

 

 

Gilbertson says the states Unified Judicial System is exploring the use of mental tele-health services to remotely make mental health services available to rural law enforcement…

 

 

 

 

Gilbertson also talked about the expansion of programs to bring lawyers to rural parts of South Dakota, making sure high-quality students are graduating from the University Of South Dakota Law School and the expansion during his time as Chief Justice of rules to bring expanded electronic coverage of circuit court proceedings to the media.


US and China come to terms on "Phase 1" trade agreement

The United States and China signed what has been called phase 1 of a trade agreement in efforts to end the now years long trade war between the two powers. 

 

The deal sees China purchasing $200 billion worth of US goods over a two year period, including doubling ag purchases to $40 billion.  China also made concessions on intellectual property, currency and access to financial services. 

 

In exchange the US will reduce some tariffs.  South Dakota representative Dusty Johnson praised the deal...

 

 

 

 

 

While the deal may bring some needed relief to ag producers across the country, some experts argue the US failed to get highly prioritized structural changes to China’s economy, and its also unclear if Chinga can or will totally fulfill its obligation to buy US products, also the guarantee is only for two years. 


HB 1057 introduced which would criminalize doctors from working to help children transition genders

Less than a week into the legislative session and already bills interesting to the public have cropped up.  House Bill 1057, introduced by Rep. Fred Deutsch of Florence would make it a Class 4 felony for a doctor to perform surgery or even prescribe medicine to help a trans child affirm their gender identity. 

 

Proponents say they are protecting children, while opponents, such as Libby Skarin, policy director with the ACLU of South Dakota call it discrimination...

 

 

 

 

The bill has been assigned to the State Affairs Committee and will have its first hearing this Friday at 7:45 a.m.  


Firefighters respond to early morning fire in Watertown

(KXLG - Watertown, SD) Watertown Fire Rescue was called out to a structure fire shortly after 2:00am this morning in the 1500 block of South Highway 81.

 

According to Watertown Battalion Chief Tyler McElhaney, the owner of Four Seasons Small Engine Repair, who lives next door to the business, looked outside and saw the business on fire and called 911.

 

McElhaney says the east half of the building was fully engulfed when firefighters arrived...

 

 

 

McElhaney says the cause of the fire is unknown at this time…..

 

 

 

 

McElhaney says that nobody was inside the building at the time of the fire and there were no injuries.


Three flu related deaths reported in South Dakota

Today South Dakota reported three flu-related deaths, the first deaths of the 2019-2020 season. The deaths were reported in Deuel and Mellette counties and the individuals were all aged 50 years and older. To protect patient confidentiality, additional information about the deceased is not being released.

 

“Our sympathy is with the families. Their losses serve as a reminder to us all that influenza can be a very serious illness,” said Dr. Joshua Clayton, state epidemiologist for the department. “It is not too late to get vaccinated for this flu season, and if you haven’t yet received your annual flu vaccination, the time to do so is now.”

 

Clayton noted that flu activity in communities across South Dakota is classified as widespread. To date, the state has reported 1,555 lab-confirmed cases of flu and 59 flu-related hospitalizations.

 

Each year, an average of 46 South Dakotan deaths are reported to the Department of Health following influenza infections. To protect against flu complications, annual flu vaccination is recommended for everyone age 6 months and older. Groups like pregnant women, children younger than 5 years, people over 65 years and people with chronic medical conditions are at higher risk for flu-related complications, such as pneumonia, hospitalization, and death. Healthcare workers and household contacts of high-risk populations, such as those with young infants, should also be vaccinated.

 

Influenza is a viral infection spread by respiratory droplets released when an infected person coughs or sneezes. Common signs and symptoms of the flu include fever of 100 degrees or greater, cough, sore throat, headache, fatigue, body or muscle aches, and runny or stuffy nose.


Minnehaha County commission votes to keep accepting refugees

The Minnehaha County Commission voted unanimously Tuesday to keep accepting refugee resettlement within the county.  The Trump administration in 2019 signed an executive order which gave county governments more control over accepting refugees, thus setting up this situation.  According to the ACLU of South Dakota’s twitter page dozens of people showed up to speak about the issue.  In the end a public show of hands showed only two people were there to speak for preventing refugees from resettling while dozens were there in favor of the effort.   


Escaped inmate from Yankton Trustee Unit caught

An inmate from the Department of Corrections Yankton Trustee Unit who left his community service worksite almost two weeks ago, was captured yesterday (Tues.) in Pierre.

 

Pierre Police captain Bryan Walz says shortly after noon yesterday, they received information that Richard Barela was hiding out at a residence in the 1200 block of East Summit Avenue. Pierre Police along with deputies from the United States Marshal’s Office and Hughes County Sheriff’s Office arrived at the residence and attempted to take Barela into custody. Barela didn’t cooperate and barricaded himself in the residence. Walz says officers attempted to negotiate with Barela for his surrender, however negotiations broke down after nearly three hours.

 

Members of the Central South Dakota SWAT team introduced gas and pepper spray into the residence. Officers were able to isolate Barela near an entry, but he continued to refuse to cooperate so SWAT team members used less than lethal munitions to take him into custody.

 

As a precaution, Barela was treated at Avera St. Mary’s before being taken to the Hughes County Jail.

 

Barela, who is serving a 10-year for possession of a controlled substance out of Hughes County, took a pickup belonging to the State of South Dakota Jan. 3 in Yankton. The vehicle was later found in Pierre.


SD highway patrol seeking new recruits

South Dakota’s Highway Patrol is looking for a group of new troopers to carry the agency through the new decade and beyond.

 

Applications are now being accepted for the Patrol’s next hiring period. Deadline to apply is Feb. 28.

 

“With recent retirements and other departures, we have positions to fill throughout the state,” says Department of Public Safety Cabinet Secretary Craig Price. “That means we are looking to hire as many qualified men and women we can. We hope our new recruiting class is a big one.”

 

The hiring process includes a physical test, interviews and other examinations. Once the recruits are hired, those who are not currently certified as law enforcement officers in South Dakota or another state must first attend the 13-week South Dakota Law Enforcement Training Academy. That is followed by the South Dakota Highway Patrol Recruit Academy which lasts 10 weeks and is followed by another 10 weeks training in the field.

 

“We always tell the prospective hires that this is a lengthy and detailed process, but we want it to be that way,” says Highway Patrol Superintendent Col. Rick Miller. “We want to leave no stone unturned in finding the most talented people we can.”

  

A current 12-member Highway Patrol recruit class, which started last year, will graduate this April.

 

Application information can be found under the “Search for Jobs” section of the Bureau of Human Resources website at https://bhr.sd.gov/job-seekers/. If you have further questions or to contact a highway patrol recruiter you can email highwaypatrolcareers@state.sd.us.

 

The Highway Patrol is part of the Department of Public Safety.


South Dakota Senator John Thune talks about potential witnesses at upcoming impeachment trial

(WNAX - Yankton, SD) As the Senate impeachment trial of President Trump approaches, there is debate over the outline and if witnesses should be called.

 

Former National Security Advisor John Bolton has said he would testify if called.

 

South Dakota Senator John Thune says that is one option...

 

 

 

Thune says House democrats had a chance to hear from Bolton...

 

 

 

Thune says they will start with what ever the House presents to them...

 

 

 

The trial in the Senate could start by the middle of next week, depending on when the Articles of Impeachment are delivered.


Waubay man identified as fatal victim in two vehicle accident near Watertown last week

A Waubay, S.D. man has been identified as the person who died Thursday night in a two-vehicle crash west of Watertown.

 

A 2002 Toyota Highlander was westbound on South Dakota Highway 20 when it collided head on with an eastbound 2001 GMC Yukon. It appears the Highlander crossed the centerline into the eastbound lane.

 

Both occupants of the Yukon had to be extricated from the vehicle. Ronald Olson, the 56-year-old driver, died from his injuries. Renee Olson, the 54-year-old passenger, suffered life-threatening injuries and was transferred to a Sioux Falls hospital. Both are from Waubay, S.D.

 

Kaden Larsen of Watertown, who was the 17-year-old driver of the Highlander, sustained serious non-life threatening injuries. He was transferred to a Sioux Falls hospital.

 

It is unknown whether either driver was wearing a seat belt. The female passenger was wearing a seat belt.

 

South Dakota’s Highway Patrol continues to investigate the crash. All information is only preliminary at this point.

 

The Highway Patrol is part of the South Dakota Department of Public Safety.


SD State Fair announces grandstand headlining acts

The South Dakota State Fair is proud to announce that the Fire on the Mountain Tour with the Charlie Daniels Band and Marshall Tucker Band will make the South Dakota State Fair grandstand a stop on Friday, September 4, 2020.
 
From genre-defining southern rock anthems to Country Music Awards (CMA) award-winning country hits and Dove Award winning gospel albums, few artists have left a bigger mark on America’s musical landscape than Charlie Daniels.
 
“I love what I do,” says Daniels of his 60-plus years in the music business. “I look forward to entertaining people. When show time gets here, I’m ready to go, ready to go play for them. It’s a labor of love. I just thank God I make a living at what I enjoy doing.”
 
The accolades have poured in for Charlie Daniels over his career, including induction into the Country Music Hall of Fame and Musicians Hall of Fame, a star on the Music City Walk of Fame, and becoming a member of the Grand Ole Opry.
 
Marshall Tucker Band’s influence can be felt far and wide through many respected contemporaries and the artists who have followed in their footsteps.
 
“The Marshall Tucker Band helped originate and personify what was to become known as Southern rock, and I was privileged to watch it all come together in the ’70s, night after night,” confirms the legendary Charlie Daniels. “In fact, the Charlie Daniels Band has played more dates with the Marshall Tucker Band over the past 45 years than any other band we’ve ever worked with.”
 
“The combination of the Charlie Daniels Band and the Marshall Tucker Band is definitely going to be a show to see,” said Peggy Besch, South Dakota State Fairgrounds manager. “We’re looking forward to both of these legends taking the stage at the 2020 State Fair on the same night.”
 
Members of the media can download images here.
 
A pre-sale on VIP tickets will begin May 18, followed by backrest holders on June 8 and June 11 for Friends of the Fair. General public ticket sales will begin June 15.
 
The 2020 South Dakota State Fair will run from Thursday, September 3, through Monday, September 7. Channel Seeds Preview night will be Wednesday, September 2. This year’s theme is “Perfect Vision of Fun.” For more information on State Fair events, contact the Fair office at 800-529-0900, visit www.sdstatefair.com or find them on Facebook or Twitter.
 
Agriculture is a major contributor to South Dakota’s economy, generating $32.5 billion in annual economic activity and employing over 132,000 South Dakotans. The South Dakota Department of Agriculture's mission is to promote, protect, and preserve South Dakota agriculture for today and tomorrow. Visit us online at sdda.sd.gov or find us on Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter.

 


2019 Oscar nominee list

Best Picture
1917 (Universal)
Ford v Ferrari (Fox)
The Irishman (Netflix)
Jojo Rabbit (Fox Searchlight)
Joker (Warner Bros.)
Little Women (Sony)
Marriage Story (Netflix)
Once Upon a Time in Hollywood (Sony)
Parasite (Neon)

Actor in a Leading Role
Antonio Banderas (Pain and Glory)
Leonardo DiCaprio (Once Upon a Time in Hollywood)
Adam Driver (Marriage Story)
Joaquin Phoenix (Joker)
Jonathan Pryce (The Two Popes)

Actress in a Leading Role
Cynthia Erivo (Harriet)
Scarlett Johansson (Marriage Story)
Saoirse Ronan (Little Women)
Charlize Theron (Bombshell)
Renée Zellweger (Judy)

Actress in a Supporting Role
Kathy Bates (Richard Jewell)
Laura Dern (Marriage Story)
Scarlett Johansson (Jojo Rabbit)
Florence Pugh (Little Women)
Margot Robbie (Bombshell)

Actor in a Supporting Role
Tom Hanks (A Beautiful Day in the Neighborhood)
Anthony Hopkins (The Two Popes)
Al Pacino (The Irishman)
Joe Pesci (The Irishman)
Brad Pitt (Once Upon a Time in Hollywood

Directing
Bong Joon Ho (Parasite)
Sam Mendes (1917)
Todd Phillips (Joker)
Martin Scorsese (The Irishman)
Quentin Tarantino (Once Upon a Time in Hollywood)

Adapted Screenplay
The Irishman (Steven Zaillian)
Jojo Rabbit (Taika Waititi)
Joker (Todd Phillips & Scott Silver)
Little Women (Greta Gerwig)
The Two Popes (Anthony McCarten)

Original Screenplay
1917 (Sam Mendes & Krysty Wilson-Cairns)
Knives Out (Rian Johnson)
Marriage Story (Noah Baumbach)
Once Upon a Time in Hollywood (Quentin Tarantino)
Parasite (Bong Joon Ho & Jin Won Han)

International Feature Film
Corpus Christi (Poland)
Honeyland (North Macedonia)
Les Miserables (France)
Pain and Glory (Spain)
Parasite (South Korea)

Production Design
1917
The Irishman
Jojo Rabbit
Once Upon a Time in Hollywood
Parasite

Film Editing
Ford v Ferrari (Andrew Buckland & Michael McCusker)
The Irishman (Thelma Schoonmaker)
Jojo Rabbit (Tom Eagles)
Joker (Jeff Groth)
Parasite (Jinmo Yang)

Cinematography
1917 (Roger Deakins)
The Irishman (Rodrigo Prieto)
Joker (Lawrence Sher)
The Lighthouse (Jarin Blaschke)
Once Upon a Time in Hollywood (Robert Richardson)

Visual Effects
1917
Avengers: Endgame
The Irishman
The Lion King
Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker

Costume Design
Jojo Rabbit 
Once Upon a Time in Hollywood 
The Irishman
Joker 
Little Women

Sound Mixing
1917
Ad Astra
Ford v Ferrari 
Joker 
Once Upon a Time in Hollywood 

Sound Editing
1917
Ford v Ferrari 
Joker 
Once Upon a Time in Hollywood 
Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker

Original Score
1917 (Thomas Newman)
Joker (Hildur Guðnadóttir)
Little Women (Alexandre Desplat)
Marriage Story (Randy Newman)
Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker

Documentary Feature
American Factory (Netflix)
The Cave (National Geographic)
The Edge of Democracy (Netflix)
For Sama (PBS)
Honeyland (Neon)

Documentary Short Subject
In the Absence
Learning to Skateboard in a Warzone (If You’re a Girl)
Life Overtakes Me
St. Louis Superman
Walk Run Cha-Cha

Makeup and Hairstyling
1917
Bombshell
Joker
Judy
Maleficent: Mistress of Evil

Animated Feature Film
How to Train Your Dragon: The Hidden World (Dreamworks)
I Lost My Body (Netflix)
Klaus (Netflix)
Missing Link (United Artists Releasing)
Toy Story 4 (Pixar)

Animated Short Film
Dcera (Daughter)
Hair Love
Kitbull
Memorable
Sister

Live-Action Short Film
Brotherhood
Nefta Football Club
The Neighbors’ Window
Saria
A Sister

Original Song
"I Can't Let You Throw Yourself Away" (Toy Story 4) — Randy Newman
"(I'm Gonna) Love Me Again" (Rocketman) — Elton John & Bernie Taupin
"I'm Standing With You" (Breakthrough) — Diane Warren
"Into the Unknown" (Frozen 2) — Robert Lopez & Kristen Anderson-Lopez
"Stand Up" (Harriet) — Joshuah Brian Campbell & Cynthia Erivo


Senator Rounds talks aftermath of Soleimani killing.

(WNAX - Yankton, SD) Members of Congress were briefed Wednesday by the Administration on military actions between the US and Iran.

 

South Dakota Senator Mike Rounds says he supports the attack ordered by the President...

 

 

 

 

Rounds says they hope Iran backs away from further confrontations...

 

 

 

Rounds says the US is giving Iran time to change their direction...

 

 

 

Top Iranian leaders were still promising “harsher revenge” for the killing of General Soleimani.  (so-la-mah-nee)

 


PUC Commission Chair Gary Hanson seeking reelection

South Dakota Public Utilities Commission Chairman Gary Hanson announced Wednesday he is running for re-election to the South Dakota Public Utilities Commission.

 

Hanson is currently in his third term on the South Dakota PUC. Since being elected to the commission he has held many leadership roles including serving six times as the PUC’s Chairman and representing South Dakota on the National Association of Regulatory Utility Commissioners’ Committee on Electricity. He has also served on the executive committee and as treasurer of the Organization of MISO States, and on the steering committee of the National Wind Coordinating Collaborative. He also serves on the Advisory Council for New Mexico State University’s Center for Public Utilities, is Vice President of the 14 state Mid-America Regulatory Conference and working groups on Electric Vehicles, Utilities for Low Income Families, and Conflict of Interest Policy.

Prior to his election to the PUC, Hanson was elected to two terms as mayor of Sioux Falls, and also served seven years as Sioux Falls’ Commissioner of Utilities where he oversaw the development and day-to-day activities of the city’s three municipal utilities.

 

Hanson was cofounder, president, COB of the now $600 million Lewis and Clark Regional Water System.

 

Hanson stated, “I have worked to preserve dependable and safe utility services at a fair and affordable price; to promote responsible renewable energy, enhance communication services, provide for a transparent and fiscally responsible PUC, and protect our citizens. I hope to continue my work in the PUC to make the quality of life in South Dakota even better.”

 

Hanson was appointed chairman by Gov. Mike Rounds to the South Dakota Underground Pipeline Task Force, to the state’s Task Force on Wind Development, and South Dakota's Energy Task Force. Gov. George S. Mickelson appointed Gary to the Cumulative Environmental Evaluation of Black Hills Mining Task Force. His service to the state also includes three terms in the State Senate where he was chairman of the committees of Bonding and of Government Audit and Operations, and vice chairman of the Taxation Committee. Prior to public service Hanson owned 3 businesses.

The election for the PUC will be held November 3 as part of the general election.

 


Hundreds turn out to mourn late tow-truck driver

(KXLG - Watertown, SD) Hundreds of mourners turned out Thursday morning to honor a man who meant a lot to a lot of people. 

 

Dale Jones was remembered by family and friends at Cornerstone Church in Watertown. 

Hundreds of Tow Operators with their trucks came to honor Dale and to show respect to his family and co-workers.  Watertown Police Say the procession was about 2.5 miles long. 

 

Jones was killed Saturday while performing his job as a tow truck operator removing a car from a ditch in the 200 block of 20th Avenue South in Watertown.  Police say the 77 year-old driver of the car lost control on the ice and struck Jones. 

 

Jones was well-respected and left a legacy that many will not forget any time soon.  He was laid to rest in Wessington, SD Thursday Afternoon.  Their investigation into the crash continues by the Watertown Police Department.  


One person killed and two injured in accident near Watertown

One person was killed and two others seriously injured after a two vehicle accident near Watertown.  The incident occurred around 5:25 p.m. Thursday on Highway 20 north of Lake Kampesak.  Jaws of Life were used by first responders to get people out of both vehicles.  The names of those involved have not yet been released and the incident remains under investigation. 


Deputy Director of the Marijuana Policy Project talks about efforts to legalize the substance in South Dakota

South Dakotans have many choices they must make when going to the polls each election cycle, but this year could prove even more interesting.  Two initiatives will be on the ballot this November regarding marijuana and its usage in South Dakota. 

 

One of those initiatives would legalize medical marijuana and the other would make the plant legal for adult use 21 years or older.  It would also require the state to regulate tax and issue licenses for growth and allow residents to grow up to six plants at home. 

 

Recreational marijuana made the ballot through the efforts of South Dakotan’s For Better Marijuana Policy with help from the Marijuana Policy Project, a marijuana advocacy group out of Washington D.C.  MPP’s deputy director Matt Schweich says polling show South Dakotans favor legalization…

 

 

 

 

Schweich says this is just the beginning of a campaign to help sure up support for both ballot measures come November.  It appears national attitudes about the substance are changing.  Right now, recreational marijuana is legal in 11 states and Washington D.C. with Michigan being the most recent to legalize.  Several other states have already legalized medical marijuana including North Dakota.  According to Pew Research, two thirds of Americans support the legalization of marijuana.

 

Despite its wider acceptance, not everyone is on board.  For instance, Pennington County sheriff Kevin Thom has already come out against the recreational measure calling marijuana a gateway drug.  Schweich disagrees with that thought process…

 

 

 

 

If marijuana were to be legalized by the voters it would mean a whole new revenue stream from the state.  Schweich says there are already examples of other states where these laws are working…

 


Influenza cases on the rise across the state

Influenza activity continues to rise across South Dakota…

 

 

 

 

 

Dr. Joshua Clayton of the State Health Department says the majority of the flu cases being seen are the Influenza-B strain…..

 

 

 

 

Flu cases are likely to reach their peak next month…

 

 

 

Clayton says the zero flu-related deaths in South Dakota is not likely to hold through the winter….

 

 

 

Dr. Clayton says there have been no reports of vaccine shortages.

 


Body Identified found on the banks of the Missouri River

(KCCR - Pierre, SD) Authorities investigating the discovery of a body found along the Missouri River in Pierre Monday have learned the name of the woman found just off the Lewis and Clark Trail just east of the Down’s Marina Peninsula….

 

 

 

 

Pierre Police Captain Bryan Walz says the fingerprints were obtained by officers at the autopsy being performed on Bear Stops.  He says the cause and manner of death may take time to learn…

 

 

 

Walz says now that investigators have a name they can try to narrow the focus on what may have happened…

 

 

 

Bear Stops was found approximately 250 yards east of the Down’s Marina Peninsula by a person walking their dog along the Lewis and Clark Trail.  Walz says he’s not sure if the identification of the body as Bear Stops will lead to an increase in calls to the Pierre Police Department Crime Tips Line.  He says approximately 14 calls have been received so far, however some of the calls may have been made in relation to missing bodies being investigated in Sioux Falls and Montana.  The Pierre Police Department Crime Tips Line number is 605-773-7420.  Anyone who may have information about Bear Stop’s death is asked to call the Tip Line.


Name released in Moody County fatal crash

Renner, S.D. man has been identified as the person who died in a fatal crash Saturday morning on Interstate 29 west of Flandreau.

 

A 2005 Toyota Tundra Double Cab SR5 pickup, pulling a trailer with a Utility Terrain Vehicle (UTV) on it, was northbound on I-29 when the driver hit a patch of ice and lost control. The pickup entered the median, rolled and came to a final rest on its roof.

 

Kasper Malsam, 60, was not wearing a seat belt and was ejected from the vehicle onto the interstate’s southbound lanes. He was struck by a southbound 2018 GMC Acadia SUV and was pronounced dead at the scene.

 

An 11-year-old female passenger, who was in the pickup, received minor injuries. Thomas Sterzinger of Taunton, MN, who was the 54-year-old male driver of the SUV, was not injured. Both were wearing seat belts.

 

South Dakota’s Highway Patrol continues to investigate the crash. All information is only preliminary at this point.

 

The Highway Patrol is part of the South Dakota Department of Public Safety.

 


PC Sisters announce matching funds for black and white ball

Guests, sponsors and supporters of Presentation College’s Black & White Ball will see the impact of their giving DOUBLED at the 2020 event, thanks to the generosity of the Presentation Sisters of the Blessed Virgin Mary.

 

The Black & White Ball is Presentation’s premier fundraising event. Proceeds support student scholarships, making a real difference in the lives of students pursuing their dreams. This year’s theme is “Once in a Blue Moon” for an event that takes place on Leap Day, and the Presentation Sisters saw an opportunity to make an unprecedented gift for this rare occasion.

 

Sister Janice Klein, PBVM, President, says that scholarships allow prospective students to choose a faith-based private school while being fiscally responsible: “We strongly believe in our mission of education at the College. Partnering with the College and civic community is one way to act on our belief. Scholarships are one way to help ensure that higher education is accessible to more students.”

 

Dr. Paula Langteau, Presentation College President, says the Blue Moon Matching Gift has truly exciting potential, as all the funds raised go toward student scholarships: “These scholarships have life-transforming potential for the students we serve at PC. Seventy-five percent of our students are Pell-eligible, which means their families do not have the resources to contribute to the cost of their education. All of this money will be going to help those students, who might otherwise not have the opportunity to go to college.”

 

Sister Janice Klein added, “We are thrilled to be investing in the College’s mission and its students!”

 

The Ball, being held at the Dakota Event Center, will begin with the music of the Aberdeen Jazz Ensemble, during an extended cocktail hour. The menu will include appetizers, a gourmet dinner, and mouth-watering dessert. The evening also features raffles, a live auction, and a silent auction with at least 100 items. This year’s after-dinner entertainment will be local band Avenger Joe. For information about tickets and sponsorships, call 605.229.8454 or email us at lori.herron@presentation.edu


Watertown police to power vehicles exclusively on E30

(KXLG - Watertown, SD) The City of Watertown will, for the first time, contract for supply of E-30 to be used exclusively in the city fleet of vehicles.  The bid was awarded to Sioux Valley Coop. This includes all vehicles in all city departments.  E-30 fuel is 30% ethanol blended with gasoline.  Ethanol is produced in Watertown at the Glacial Lakes Energy plan using corn grown by area farmers.  Watertown Mayor Sarah Caron said the action taken by the council was a formal action and it was the right thing to do...

 

 

 

Watertown City Engineer Heath Von Eye says Sioux Valley Coop with be awarded the bid after an agreement was reached for 6 cents off per gallon.  Glacial Lakes Energy has done an enormous amount of research on using E30. The testing process has shown that E-30 blends can actually increase available horsepower and torque with fuel economy being maintained or just slightly changed, depending on the vehicle. 

 

In a prepared release to KXLG News, Mayor Caron says that GLE processes millions of bushels of corn at their facilities in Watertown, Mina, Aberdeen and Huron, generating Hundreds of millions of gallons of ethanol.  All of that, she says, supports family farmers, local businesses, local school districts and our communities. 

 

Caron said, “I urge everyone to support our area farmers and local economy by using E-30 Fuel, It’s the right thing to do.”


Aberdeen city council schedules hearing on Buffalo Wild Wings liquor license transfer

The Aberdeen City Council at its Monday meeting scheduled a hearing date for a liquor license transfer to LaHaise Management out of Fargo.  According to the Aberdeen American News, the signee is Todd LaHaise who is the managing partner of six Buffalo Wild Wings locations across the Dakotas.  With that news the long living rumor of a Buffalo Wild Wings restaurant can be confirmed.  The restaurant is planned at 3401 sixth ave se just south of the Aberdeen Mall.   


Recreational marijuana constitutional amendment makes ballot in 2020

South Dakota Secretary of State Steve Barnett confirmed Monday, a group of marijuana activists have gotten the necessary amount of signatures to get recreational marijuana on the ballot in 2020.  It will now be up to South Dakotan’s to choose if South Dakota should become the 12th state in the union to make marijuana legal.  According to the filing, this is an amendment to the state’s constitution that would legalize marijuana for adults 21 years or older and would require the state legislature to enact a hemp cultivation law.  This will be the second question regarding marijuana which will be on the ballot in 2020 as a medical initiative also qualified.


Bath man makes first court appearance on first degree murder charges

A Bath man made his first court appearance Monday in relation to a shooting death late last week.  Jarrett Owen Jones faces charges of first degree murder in the death of 29-year-old Jon Schumacher.  According to court documents Schumacher was in an abusive relationship with Jone’s daughter and had sought to see her after being arrested and released from jail for DUI.  Schumacher and Jones then began to argue and Jones ultimately shot Schumacher once, he fell to the ground and according to court documents Jones then shot him again as he stood over him.  His bond was set at $1 million. 


South Dakota Governor Kristi Noem has ordered flags at half staff in honor of a late former state legislator

Governor Kristi Noem has ordered flags at the South Dakota State Capitol to be flown at half-staff from 8 a.m. until sunset on Monday, January 6, 2020, to honor the life of George Blair, a former legislator.    

 

Blair served in the South Dakota Legislature from 1979 until 1986. A memorial service for Blair will be held at 1 p.m. on January 6 at First Presbyterian Church in Sturgis.


State board of Water and Natural Resources approves more than $21 million in statewide projects

Governor Kristi Noem today announced that the state Board of Water and Natural Resources has approved more than $21.9 million for water, wastewater, watershed, recycling, and solid waste projects. The board met today over the Digital Dakota Network.

 

“These grant and loan awards are incredibly beneficial to communities across the state,” said Noem. “Through this assistance, towns will be able to upgrade storm water, wastewater and drinking water systems, development new landfill cells and equipment, and enhance protection of the environment.”

 

The $21,992,800 total includes $871,000 in grants and $21,121,800 in low-interest loans, with $925,000 in principal forgiveness

 

The grants and loans awarded by the board are administered through the Department of Environment and Natural Resources.

 

Grants were awarded to:

  • Mitchell, $663,000 for landfill and recycling projects
  • Rapid City, $148,000 for landfill improvements
  • Yankton, $60,000 to purchase equipment for its solid waste transfer station

 

Loans were awarded to:

  • Brookings, $850,000 for stormwater drainage improvements
  • Elk Point, $1,088,000 for water and wastewater improvements
  • ESCRAP Properties, LLC, $1,398,400 for a new recycling facility
  • Sioux Falls, $9,457,400 for stormwater drainage improvements
  • Viborg, $1,771,000 for stormwater and sanitary sewer improvements
  • Watertown, $5,000,000 for wastewater administration building replacement

 

Loans with principal forgiveness were awarded to:

  • Blunt, $657,000 loan, with $207,000 in principal forgiveness, for drinking water system improvements
  • Irene, $330,000 loan amendment, with $248,000 in principal forgiveness, for wastewater system improvements
  • Langford, $570,000 loan, with $400,000 in principal forgiveness, for drinking water system improvements

 

The grants and loans were awarded from DENR’s Consolidated Water Facilities Construction Program, Drinking Water State Revolving Fund Program, Clean Water State Revolving Fund Program and Solid Waste Management Program.

 

The Consolidated Water Facilities Construction Program, funded in part by revenues from the Petroleum Release Compensation Tank Inspection fee and other revenues, provides grants and loans for water, wastewater, and watershed projects.

 

The State of South Dakota and the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency fund the Drinking Water State Revolving Fund Program, which provides low-interest loans for public drinking water system projects. The State of South Dakota and the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency fund the Clean Water State Revolving Fund Program, which provides low-interest loans for wastewater, storm water, water conservation, and nonpoint source projects. Principal forgiveness is a subsidy option that results in a reduced loan repayment amount for the borrower.

 

The Solid Waste Management Program provides grants and loans for solid waste disposal, recycling and waste tire projects. The Legislature annually appropriates dedicated water and waste funding for the Consolidated and Solid Waste programs through the Governor’s Omnibus Water Funding Bill.


Watertown man identified in roadway fatality

(KXLG - Watertown, SD) On January 4th approximately 8:35AM, the Watertown Police Department, along with the Codington County Sheriff’s Department, South Dakota Highway Patrol and Watertown Fire Rescue responded to a roadway fatality.

 

According to Police Corporal Juan Flores, A 2000 Chevrolet Impala, driven by Quentin Godes, lost control on the roadway and struck a tow truck operator assisting in removing another vehicle from the ditch. The operator suffered fatal injuries in the crash.

 

The deceased has been identified as 47-year-old Dale Jones of Watertown.  

 

Charges are pending further investigation. The incident is being investigated by the Watertown Police Department Accident Reconstruction Team with assistance from the South Dakota Highway Patrol.


Hardee's in Aberdeen abruptly closes its doors Thursday morning

Despite opening up to serve breakfast Thursday morning, Hardee's in Aberdeen has apparently closed its doors.  In the early afternoon a UHaul could be seen parked back behind the building, moving cooking equipment out of the building.  The doors had been locked and the drivethrough lane had the menu removed as well as a car blocking it.  A sign could be seen thaking customers for their patronage.  A phone call from Dakota Broadcasting was not immedately returned by management. 


Brown County sheriff's office investigating man shot Thursday morning

The Brown County Sheriff's office is investigating an incident which occured Thursday morning in Aberdeen and resulted in one person dead.  According to Officials, the incident involved a gun and the victim was shot and killed in rural Aberdeen.  No arrests have been made and the names fo those involved have not yet been released.  Chief Deputy Dave Lunzman tells the Aberdeen American News the situation is being treated as a homicide.  


Gov. Kristi Noem to take second pass at passing "riot boosting" law

(WNAX - Yankton, SD) South Dakota Governor Kristi Noem will make another attempt at passing a so called “riot boosting” bill in this year’s legislative session. A bill passed quickly last year would have restricted public actions by protestors. That was later struck down as unconstitutional.

 

Noem says they took more time to write this bill...

 

 

 

Noem says she wants more public input...

 

 

 

Noem says this years version clarifies some earlier laws...

 

 

 

The bills were written in anticipation of protests surrounding the construction of the Keystone XL oil pipeline in western South Dakota.


Over 160 arrests made during 2019 at sobriety checkpoints

(Dakota Radio Group News - Pierre, SD) The South Dakota Office of Highway Safety, the Highway Patrol and local law enforcement agencies held over 150 sobriety checkpoints over the course of last year.

 

The preliminary tally for 2019, shows there were 158 checkpoints conducted statewide. During those operations, 12,710 vehicles were checked ending up in 169 DUI arrests and 84 alcohol citations issued.

 

Law enforcement agencies will hold sobriety checkpoints this month (Jan.) in: Hughes, Lyman, Stanley and Walworth counties in central South Dakota. Checkpoints will also be held in Beadle, Brown, Butte, Charles Mix, Codington, Day, Fall River, Kingsbury, Lincoln, McCook, Meade, Minnehaha, Pennington and Yankton counties.

 

The checkpoints are done each month in different counties as a way to discourage drivers from drinking and then driving. They’re funded by the South Dakota Office of Highway Safety and conducted by the South Dakota Highway Patrol with the help of local law enforcement.

 

Both the Office of Highway Safety and the Highway Patrol are part of the South Dakota Department of Public Safety.


Illinois becomes 11th state to legalize marijuana January 1st

The State of Illinois on January 1st became the 11th state in the union to legalize recreational marijuana.  In order to ingest marijuana in Illinois you must be 21 years or older.  The acceptance of the drug continues to rise across the country both in recreational use and for its medicinal purposes.  Included in the 11 states where marijuana is legal to consume recreationally, several other states have exceptions for medicinal purposes.  On top of that, marijuana was completely legalized in Canada in 2018.


South Dakota raises minimum wage Law January 1st

Beginning January 1st South Dakota has officially raised its minimum wage for non-tipped employees to $9.30 an hour.  That is up from $9.10 an hour in 2019.  Tipped employees will see their wages increased to $4.65 an hour, up from $4.55 an hour in 2019.  Minimum wages will be going up in 72 jurisdictions across the country in 2020. 


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