This story was updated Tuesday evening.
SIOUX FALLS, S.D. (KELO) — Governor Kristi Noem is not giving up the fight to remove the grocery sales tax.
Tuesday the governor released a nearly five-minute video to her personal Twitter where she pushed back against the advancement of a state sales-tax reduction that passed through the Senate Taxation Committee on Monday. The bill would reduce the tax from 4.5% to 4.2% but would expire on June 30, 2025.
Noem’s bill to eliminate the grocery tax entirely was killed in committee last week.
“Overall, the people of South Dakota want this (grocery) tax eliminated. Now, so far, the legislature has made a very different choice, they are opting for a temporary rate reduction in the overall sales tax rate of 30 cents for every $100 spent,” Noem said.
Both the grocery-tax elimination and the sales-tax reduction would take slightly more than $100 million apiece out of state government’s revenue stream.
In the video, Noem said that she hopes that lawmakers remember that they work for and are accountable to the people.
“They’ll present me a budget soon and I will have to decide if it is worthy of my signature or not,” Noem said. “I’ve proven in the past that I am willing to make hard decisions and I will again, especially if it is something that respects our constitution and the will of the people.”
Speaking to the sunset amendment on the proposed reduction, Noem said it would create “instability” for businesses in South Dakota.
“If the legislature pursues a temporary tax cut and instead embraces a spending spree, it will hurt our families and our businesses,” Noem said.
Dakotans for Health is hoping to give the people of South Dakota the opportunity to vote to remove the grocery tax in 2024 with a proposed ballot measure. In the Twitter video, Noem said that the Legislature recognizes that South Dakotas will support this measure and “they are worried that they can’t afford two tax reductions.”
According to polling data from Front Porch Strategies released by Noem’s campaign team, 58% of South Dakotans prefer repealing the tax when compared to other tax reduction options such as property or overall sales tax.
Some legislators have questioned the fairness of the wording in that survey.
The Senate Appropriations Committee is scheduled Wednesday morning to consider the sales-tax cut that Republican Rep. Chris Karr has proposed, with the two-year sunset amendment that the Senate tax panel had attached.
The House meanwhile dug in Tuesday afternoon and inserted wording similar to Karr’s 4.2% proposal into another bill, SB-112, that Senate Republican leader Casey Crabtree had introduced. The House version of that bill, which passed 63-6 without the two-year sunset, now returns to the Senate for a decision whether to agree.
Capitol Bureau reporter Bob Mercer contributed to this story.