PIERRE, S.D. - Representatives in the South Dakota House overwhelmingly agreed Monday to substantially reduce the inspection fee for manipulated manure that's sold for fertilizer.
The vote was 63-4 to send HB 1188 to the Senate.
The inspection fee would be reduced 80 percent.
Representative David Anderson said he's trying to bring the fee on manure closer to the fee on commercial fertilizers.
The Hudson Republican said he can use four to six tons -- 8,000 to 12,000 pounds -- of manure to achieve the same nutrient value as several hundreds pounds of commercial fertilizers.
The problem? "That tax is based on tonnage," Anderson said.
He said manure buyers would still be paying two to three times what buyers will be paying on commercial fertilizer.
His bill if it becomes law wouldn't take effect until January 1, 2020.
Representative Jean Hunhoff argued against it.
"If we're going to say equity, is this taking us down a slope, a slippery slope?" the Yankton Republican asked.
Representative Tom Brunner, a Nisland Republican, gave his answer. "I think it's perfectly proper to bring the correction at this time," he said.