Lawmakers take another run at Spanish-language driver-license test for South Dakota

Capitol News Bureau

PIERRE, S.D. (KELO) — State legislators plan to try again on allowing people to take South Dakota driver-license tests in languages other than English.

SB 70 is assigned to the Senate Transportation Committee. Prime sponsor is Senator V.J. Smith, a Brookings Republican.

His bill calling for a Spanish-language version would take effect January 1, 2022. The bill would add an exception to the state law that says English is the common language of South Dakota.

A similar bill squeaked through the Senate last year on a 19-15 vote, then died in a House committee.

Many businesses in Sioux Falls and the neighboring area from Brookings to Yankton to Mitchell support the change.

Two Sioux Falls Democrats, Senator Reynold Nesiba and Representative Linda Duba, were lead sponsors of last year’s bill. The Legislature’s two chambers have two-thirds Republican majorities.

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