Home > 2015 SD Legislative Session > The 19 bill Governor Daugaard signed into law on March 19

The 19 bill Governor Daugaard signed into law on March 19

March 20, 2015
SD House Floor. Photo by Ken Santema 01/21/15.

SD House Floor. Photo by Ken Santema 01/21/15.

On Thursday, March 19, Governor Daugaard signed 19 bills into law. He announced 17 of them all at once. But he also decided to announce an increase to the South Dakota Opportunity Scholarship and the General Appropriations Act signings in their own releases.

Posts on the previous bills signed into law during the SD 2015 SD legislative session can be found hereherehereherehereherehere, herehere, here, here, and here.

This is probably one of the more interesting group of bills signed by the Governor this year. Most of these are appropriation bills that were forced to the negotiations portion of the conference committee process. In this post I am going to basically paste my previous notes on each bill. Many of these I plan on doing individual blog posts about in the future to expand on them. So I might not go as deep in this post for some of the more important bills as I may otherwise. And yes, this post is long. But since I plan to do individual posts on many of them coming up, I don’t mind this post being long.

It is worth noting there are only 8 bills for the Governor left to decide upon at this time.

SB 53 – SoDakLiberty PostsRevise certain provisions regarding the state aid to general education formula and to revise the property tax levies for the general fund of school districts.

The SD Bureau of Finance and Management (BFM) asked for this bill. This bill passed Senate Appropriations 8-0 and the Senate floor 25-10. It had an amendment on in House Appropriations and passed 8-0. It was further amended on the House floor and passed 66-2. The Senate failed to concur with the changes made in the House. It then went to conference committee to work out the differences between the two chambers. There all of the amendments placed on the bill in House Appropriations and the House floor were removed. Finally the bill amended back to its original form passed the Senate 26-7 and the House 48-18.

This bill provided the 2% increase in state aid to school funding. But then it really doesn’t. SB 53 made a huge change to school funding. Currently costs related to technology in schools, statewide student assessments, and school district benefits are figured outside of the school funding formula. SB 53 now includes those extra costs in the state aid funding formula. The practical consequence of this change means more school funding dollars will have to come from local effort through higher property taxes. Kind of a neat trick for the legislature and Governor to pull off. They make it look like a magic 2% increase has been found; when in fact all it really boils down to is an accounting illusion with some major redirection.

The actual change for “per student allocation” was to the rate of $4,876.76 for 2016, that is up from $4781.14 in 2015. That may sound good. But most of that increase will come at the cost of local taxpayers. Personally I believe the taxes and control should be as close as possible to the school districts. It is more how this change was made that makes me feel uneasy about the change.

This bill also changed the maximum level of the tax levy.

SB 54 – SoDakLiberty PostsRevise certain provisions regarding the state aid to special education formula and to revise the property tax levies for special education.

The SD Bureau of Finance and Management (BFM) brought this as the special education companion for SB 53. It had a similar path through both chambers and was also stripped of amendments in conference committee. The only difference is it passed after conference much stronger. It passed in the Senate 30-0 and in the House 60-4.

SB 55 – SoDakLiberty PostsRevise the General Appropriations Act for fiscal year 2015.

The Bureau of Finance and Management (BFM) is responsible for this bill that must come every year. It was amended in Senate Appropriations and passed that committee 9-0 and the Senate floor 34-0. It had more amendments in House Appropriations and passed that committee 8-0 and the House floor 61-7. The Senate did not concur with the changes made in the House, forcing it to conference committee. The committee further amended the bill. It then passed the House 54-5 and the Senate 34-0.

I’ll let others that love creating spreadsheets and graphs blog about the actual numbers in this bill. But from browsing it what I find most troubling is what appears to be an expansion of state government though increasing FTE’s. Hopefully I can find time to blog more about this bill next week.

SB 91 – SoDakLiberty Posts – Make an appropriation to support the South Dakota need-based grant program and to declare an emergency.

This was amended by Senate Appropriations from $200,000 down to $1. It then passed the committee 8-0. It was amended on the Senate floor to give it an emergency clause and passed 34-0. It was amended from the $1 placeholder to $150,000 by House Appropriations and passed that committee 7-1. The House floor then amended it down to $2. I wasn’t sure why it was amended back down to $2, it had already been amended by House Appropriations, which was sufficient to force a conference if that is what was desired. The House passed the bill 57-9. In conference it was amended back up to $150,000. The Senate concurred 33-0 and the House concurred 60-6.

This appropriated funds for the Board of Regents to use for the South Dakota need-based grant fund. The $150,000 is $50,000 short of the original amount asked for.

SB 92 – SoDakLiberty Posts – Make an appropriation to support the South Dakota critical teaching needs scholarship program and to declare an emergency.

Sen Tim Rave (R, Dist 25) and Rep Justin Cronin (R, Dist 23) are the prime sponsors. This was amended by Senate Appropriations from $200,000 down to $1. It then passed the committee 8-0. It was amended on the Senate floor to give it an emergency clause and passed 34-0. It was amended from the $1 placeholder to $150,000 by House Appropriations and passed that committee 8-0. The House floor then amended it down to $2 and passed the bill 59-7. The bill then went to conference committee and was amended back up to $150,000. The new bill passed the Senate 33-0 and the House 62-3. Yes, this bill is almost a replica of what happened with SB 91.

This bill appropriates money for the Board of Regents to use for the South Dakota critical teaching needs scholarship program. It was only reduced down $50,000 from the original asking amount.

SB 109 – SoDakLiberty Posts – Establish a grant program for adult community residential services designed to reduce the risk of recidivism, to provide a report to the Legislature, to make an appropriation therefor, and to declare an emergency.

Sen Larry Tidemann (R, Dist 7) and Rep Scott Munsterman (R, Dist 7) are the prime sponsors. This bill passed Senate Appropriations 8-0 after being amended. Before being amended, this bill appropriated $250,000 to fund the alternative care program being created by this bill. In addition, $4,000 of that money can be used for administration of the fund. The amendment changed the appropriated amount down to $1. It passed the Senate floor 30-2. This was amended in House Appropriations  from the $1 placeholder to $150,000. The House floor then amended it down to $2 and passed the bill 66-2. The conference committee took two times to get this one passed. They made some changes, including adding an emergency clause and changing the appropriated amount up to $200,00. That passed the House 67-1 and the Senate 31-3.

The true purpose of this grant program is explained in section 1 of the bill:

There is hereby established the alternative care program to be administered by the Unified Judicial System. The Unified Judicial System shall award grants to nonprofit entities within the state of South Dakota that provide indigent adults with extended residential alternative care programs designed to reduce the risk of recidivism. The grants shall be awarded for room and board costs for South Dakota residents of the program with a maximum award of thirty dollars per day per resident. Any grant award shall be distributed in quarterly installments.

It sounds like a good program. But I wonder if this was the right time to create another grant program…

SB 152 – SoDakLiberty Posts – Make an appropriation for certain costs related to mountain pine beetle suppression and to declare an emergency.

Sen Bruce Rampelberg (R, Dist 30) and Rep Mike Verchio (R, Dist 30) are the prime sponsors. This bill passed Senate Appropriations 8-0 after being amended. This appropriates $1,900,000 to continue the fight against the pine beetles. As usual the bill was amended down to $1 so the bill could advance. The bill passed the Senate floor 32-1. This was amended in House Appropriations  from the $1 placeholder to $500,000 and passed that committee 8-0. The House passed it 66-2. During conference it was amended up to $750,000. It then passed the Senate 32-0 and the House 65-1.

As an east-river born resident I really didn’t have much working knowledge of the pine beetle until last summer when I attended the Governor’s Ag Summit in Deadwood (its being held in Deadwood again this year). During that summit I was able to see the damage first hand and learn about the pine beetle. A large part of me still questions whether the state is fighting an unnecessary battle. Maybe there will be more about the pine beetle at this years summit (which I plan to attend).

SB 174 – SoDakLiberty Posts – Make an appropriation for the Ross Shaft at the Sanford Underground Research Facility and to declare an emergency.

The SD Office of the Governor asked for this bill. If anyone is bothering to read the part of my posts that follow the changes through the chambers I would keep your seat-belt on…  This bill passed Senate Appropriations 8-0 after being amended. This bill originally appropriated $3,950,000 to the South Dakota Science and Technology Authority for the purposes of making upgrades and improvements to the Ross Shaft at the Sanford Underground Research Facility. As usual the bill was amended down to $1 so the bill could advance. It then passed the Senate floor 31-2. This bill was amended in House Appropriations to remove all amendments. That restored the $3,950,000 to be appropriated. It was then amended again to remove the amendment that removed all amendments, thus restoring all of the amendments from before the previous amendment. (say that ten times fast!) It was then amended from the $1 placeholder to $2,000,000. Finally House Appropriations was done playing with the bill and passed it 8-0. It was then amended on the House floor to make the appropriation from the “employer’s investment in South Dakota’s future fund” instead of the general fund. That passed the House floor 63-5. Finally it was amended one last time by the conference committee. That amendment was to delete all previous amendments. So the bill was back to appropriating $3,950,000 from the general fund! That version of the bill passed the Senate 33-0 and the House 63-5.

Personally I think this is $4,000 that could have been better spent elsewhere. Let Sanford and other commercial sources pay the tab…

SB 179 – SoDakLiberty Posts – Revise certain provisions relating to record search fees in the Unified Judicial System.

The SD Chief Justice asked for this bill. This passed Senate Appropriations 7-1 and the Senate floor 31-0 and House Appropriations 8-0. This bill appears to increase the fee from $15 to $20. That extra $5 would go directly to the law enforcement officers’ training fund. It was then amended on the House floor to have $1 go to the general fund. It passed the House floor 57-9. Finally the conference committee got rid of the $1 provision added by the House. It also changed the date the new fee takes effect from 2017 to 2015. The Senate concurred 33-0 and the House concurred 62-4.

For anyone keeping track, this is one of many fee increases passed during the 2015 legislative session.

SB 190 – SoDakLiberty Posts – Clarify health coverage for applied behavior analysis, and to establish the Applied Behavior Analysis Provider Workgroup.

Sen Alan Solano (R, Dist 32) and Rep Scott Munsterman (R, Dist 7) are the prime sponsors. This bill was amended twice in Senate State Affairs and passed that committee 9-0. It then passed the Senate floor 35-0. It was further amended in House State Affairs. One of the big changes in House State Affairs was to change the maximum benefit for children up to age six from “$36,000″ to “$50,000″. House State Affairs passed the bill 12-0 and the House floor passed it 65-2. It then went through major amending (and amending) in the conference committee.

I do think the proponents in committee made the case that such changes need to be made. I also think it is just wrong that insurance companies are not covering ABA. But at the same time I still see this as a mandate. It should also be noted that this mandate only applies to grandfathered plans (ones not compliant with ACA), and even then it might not apply to all of those plans. This is not just a mandate, but it is a mandate that is targeted to a class of insurance that will keep shrinking. Proponents tried hard to make it sound like the bill isn’t a mandate. But, I will defer to one of my favorite Douglas Adams quotes as to whether this is a mandate: “If it looks like a duck, and quacks like a duck, we have at least to consider the possibility that we have a small aquatic bird of the family anatidae on our hands.”

I do have an interview setup with an ABA specialist in June to explain to me why this is not truly a mandate. I look forward to the interview. I do have empathy for the parents that are having problems getting access to ABA for their children.

HB 1110 – SoDakLiberty PostsIncrease the number of judges in the Second and Seventh Judicial Circuits.

Rep Brian Gosch (R, Dist 32) and Sen Tim Rave (R, Dist 25) are the prime sponsors. Here is what the bill originally appropriated before House Appropriations amended the amounts down to a dollar:

  • $227,216 for the creation of a circuit court judgeship in the Second Judicial Circuit. $213,571 of that can be used for personal services and benefits. $13,645 can be used for operational expenses. 2.0 FTE for a circuit judge position and support staff in the Second Judicial Circuit.
  • $227,216 for the creation of a circuit court judgeship in the Seventh Judicial circuit. $213,571 of that can be used for personal services and benefits. $13,645 can be used for operational expenses. 2.0 FTE for a circuit judge position and support staff in the Seventh Judicial Circuit.

The bill passed House Appropriations 8-0. It passed the House floor 59 to 10. Senate Appropriations then amended the amounts to $2. This version passed Senate Appropriations 9-0 and the Senate floor 30-3. It was then hoghoused in the conference committee. The bill no longer appropriates any money here. Instead it amends § 16-6-1 to add 1 Second Circuit Judge and 1 Seventh Circuit Judge. That passed the Senate 30-3 and the House 48-4.

HB 1140 – SoDakLiberty PostsIncrease the crimes and lookback period to enhance the penalty for violating a protection order.

Rep Peggy Gibson (D, Dist 22) and Sen Angie Buhl O’Donnell (D, Dist 15) are the prime sponsors. This bill was amended in House Judiciary and passed that committee 13-0. It then passed the House floor 54-15. It was then amended in Senate Judiciary to remove all amendments.  It passed Senate Judiciary 7-0 and the Senate floor 34-0. The conference committee then recommended the bill be amended to remove the Senate Judiciary amendment. That passed the Senate floor 33-0 and the House floor 66-2.

The lookback period in this bill changes from 5 years to 10 years. The part of the bill that kept getting amended was what types of assault should be included.

HB 1147 – SoDakLiberty PostsIncrease the amounts of the annual awards given to recipients of the South Dakota opportunity scholarship

The SD Office of the Governor asked for this bill, and it was apparently one of Daugaard’s pet bills this year. The bill passed House Appropriations 9-0, the House floor 65-3, and Senate Appropriations 8-1. The Senate floor amended it to add award amounts back in for before July 1, 2015. If I understand it correctly, that means only those getting the money awards for the first time starting this fall will get the increased funds; and those already using these awards will continue to use the old amounts. That passed the Senate 27-8. It went to conference and nothing was done with it. It then passed the Senate 32-0 and the House 65-3.

This would add three hundred dollars for years one, two, and three students. Six hundred is added for fourth year students, or only three hundred if they did their previous years outside SD. This bill would also change the total amount of scholarship money from $5,000 to $6,500. I think scholarships are great. But even this little bit of money could probably be better used in other areas.

HB 1190 – SoDakLiberty PostsMake an appropriation for community-based provider workforce improvement and to declare an emergency.

The Office of the Governor asked for this bill. Here is what the bill originally appropriated before House Appropriations amended the amounts down to a dollar:

  • $2,926,732 from the general fund and $1,863,190 in federal funds to the Department of Social Services for the purpose described in section 1 of this Act.
  • $1,041,240 from the general fund and $1,041,411 in federal funds to the Department of Human Services for the purpose described in section 1 of this Act.
  • $157,028 from the general fund and $79,791 in federal funds to the Department of Corrections for the purpose described in section 1 of this Act.

The bill passed House Appropriations 8-0 and the House floor 65-4. It was then amended in Senate Appropriations from $1 to $2 and passed that committee 9-0.It was then amended on the Senate floor with these amounts:

  • $1,560,520 from the general fund and $404,312 in federal funds to the Department of Social Services for the purpose described in section 1 of this Act.
  • $1,041,240 from the general fund and $1,041,411 in federal funds to the Department of Human Services for the purpose described in section 1 of this Act.
  • $157,028 from the general fund and $79,791 in federal funds to the Department of Corrections for the purpose described in section 1 of this Act.

That passed the Senate floor 33-0. The conference committee then further messed with the amount going to DSS so the final amounts look like this:

  • $1,655,877 from the general fund and $506,140 in federal funds to the Department of Social Services for the purpose described in section 1 of this Act.
  • $1,041,240 from the general fund and $1,041,411 in federal funds to the Department of Human Services for the purpose described in section 1 of this Act.
  • $157,028 from the general fund and $79,791 in federal funds to the Department of Corrections for the purpose described in section 1 of this Act.

The amount that would go to DSS seemed to be the only part of the bill that needed negotiation. The Senate concurred 33-0 and the House concurred 67-0.

The purpose of this bill was stated in section 1:

The moneys appropriated in this Act shall be allocated to community-based providers throughout South Dakota to enhance the providers’ ability to hire and retain direct care staff within their facilities located in South Dakota.

HB 1191 – SoDakLiberty PostsMake an appropriation for the Jobs for America’s Graduates program and to declare an emergency.

The SD Office of the Governor asked for this bill. This was amended in House Appropriations to change the appropriated amount down to $1, from $925,000. It then passed House appropriations 9-0 and the House floor 62-5 (after having a slight wording amendment). Senate Appropriations then amended the amount up to $250,000 and passed through that committee 9-0. The Senate passed it 31-4. After going through conference committee both Houses concurred with the $250,000 set by Senate Appropriations. The Senate concurred 33-0 and the House concurred 60-8.

This bill provides funds for the Jobs for America’s Graduates program.

HB 1192 – SoDakLiberty PostsMake an appropriation for the protection and enhancement of wildlife habitat and to declare an emergency

The SD Office of the Governor asked for this bill. This was amended to change the appropriated amount down to $1, from $1,500,000. It then passed House appropriations 9-0 and the House floor 52-15. Senate Appropriations amended it up to $500,000. Also it added this interesting provision: “The funds appropriated in section 1 of this Act shall be for the purpose of program operations and may not be added to an endowment.” That passed Senate Appropriations 9-0 and the Senate floor 30-5. The conference committee amended the appropriated amount down to $350,000. The Senate concurred 31-2 and the House concurred 53-15.

Each dollar spent from this fund must match private contributions. I am an advocate of conservation and improving wildlife habitat. But I don’t really think this should have been a priority this year. Instead of using matching State funds, I would rather see the private organizations step up their efforts to work on wildlife habitat (and predator) issues without taxpayer dollars.

HB 1208 – SoDakLiberty PostsAppropriate money for the ordinary expenses of the legislative, judicial, and executive departments of the state, the expenses of state institutions, interest on the public debt, and for common schools.

This of course is the big appropriation bill. I’m not going to attempt to go through this bill at this time. Instead I will say that the FY 2016 budget totals $4.3 billion. Here is part of Daugaard’s press release about the bill:

House Bill 1208 provides for the following ongoing increases in FY16:

  • Two percent increase for education,
  • Up to 2.5 percent for medical providers, and
  • Two percent inflation and two percent market value increases for state employees.

Under the General Appropriations Act, education will account for the largest portion of general fund spending – 45 percent – in FY16.

Too bad that 2% increase for education was partly illusion…

HB 1225 – SoDakLiberty PostsProhibit the unauthorized commercial use of a personality’s right of publicity and provide a civil remedy therefor.

Rep Elizabeth May (R, Dist 27) and Sen Jim Bradford (D, Dist 27) are the prime sponsors. This bill had a major amendment changing wording around in House Judiciary and passed that committee 12-0. I had apprehensions about this bill due to its ties to the MPAA. However the amended version of the bill doesn’t seem to raise any red flags for me. And it does seem to protect a persons likeness from being used commercially without permission in SD. It is an interesting bill for sure. The bill passed the House floor 66-2. It barely made it through Senate Judiciary with a vote of 4-3. The Senate floor passed it 29-6.

I was happy to see Rep May and Sen Bradford were able to get this passed. This bill was passed in part because of Russel Means (that is a post for a different day). Russel Means was an interesting person who I always respected (even though I disagreed with a few things he said and did over the years).

HB 1228 – SoDakLiberty PostsEstablish an obligation recovery center.

Rep Justin Cronin (R, Dist 23) is the prime sponsor. This bill was originally titled “Establish the state debt collection office”. I guess some legislators felt “obligation recovery center” sounded much nicer…  This was a hoghouse vehicle bill. The Senate version of this bill (SB 59 –SoDakLiberty Posts) was tabled. This bill was filled with the language the Department of Revenue wants. The hoghoused bill passed House Appropriations 8-1. It was amended on the House floor and passed 58-11. This bill was watered down quite a bit in Senate Appropriations and passed 5-4. The Senate floor passed it 18-17. The House floor did not concur with the Senate amendments, and even failed a motion to reconsider. The conference committee further amended the bill. The Senate concurred 19-15 and the House concurred 46-23.

I realize the bill was amended so it wouldn’t have to meet the 2/3 threshold, but I still feel such a massive growth of government should have required more than a simple majority to pass. This is a bill I am working on a separate post for.

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