Session 1 Week 7

Home  »  Session Articles  »  Session 1 Week 7

The 7th week of the 90th Legislative session reached the crossover milestone Wednesday.  The House heard about five hours of debate on the remaining House bills that had to be passed over to the Senate and we accomplished the task. Some of the bills of note we discussed were HB 1201 which allows the county or municipality the option of deciding if a conditional use permit must be approved by a 2/3 or simple majority vote of the governing body. That passed.  HB 1166 was the bill to prohibit the use of tanning devices by minors. That failed to receive enough votes to move on to the Senate. As much as I agree that overuse of tanning is a bad thing I think that it’s the parent’s responsibility to keep track of your children and prohibit them from doing things that may be harmful to them. Also many businesses that offer tanning are already requiring parental permission and I saw this bill as more unnecessary regulation by the state. HB 1190 is a bill that will enhance the providers’ ability to hire and retain direct care staff within their facilities located in South Dakota. The bill was amended to $1 to keep the bill alive until the General Appropriations bill is put together. The hope is to have somewhere around $4 million in that bill. HB 1221 was the bill that would have authorized unilateral consent in certain divorce proceedings. The pitch was made that this would help victims of domestic abuse by allowing them to finalize the divorce without the signature of the other spouse. There was concern that this made getting a divorce far too easy for a spouse who was no longer interested in making the marriage work – too easy of a way out. There had been talk of an amendment that would have narrowed the scope of the bill to more directly address those who were in abusive relationships but that amendment never materialized and so the bill died 44-25.

With crossover day in the past each chamber is now focused on reviewing the bills that the opposite chamber found worthy to pass on. As a result much of what we will hear has been thoroughly vetted and most find their way to the governor’s desk with little opposition. SB 180 may be an exception to this. This bill was brought to my attention Friday morning and would change the taxes paid by wind generation companies from 2% of gross receipts to $.00040 per Kilowatt hour of electricity produced. At the time of this writing I’m not sure what the dollar amount difference would be, but the bill is being touted as an economic development tool aimed at getting more wind generation in the state so this could only mean less tax dollars available. Obviously this would be extremely detrimental to Aurora and Jerauld counties because the bill states that any wind farm producing power on or after July 1, 2007 would be affected. If this bill isn’t changed so that it won’t affect previously built wind farms and only applies to future development I will push for the bill to be killed.

Thank you for allowing me to serve you in the state legislature. 

Rep. Joshua Klumb