Three panels to meet on the day before S.D. lawmakers open their 2020 session

Capitol News Bureau
KELO pierre capitol building

PIERRE, S.D. (KELO) — Several dozen of South Dakota’s 105 senators and representatives will hold committee meetings Monday at the state Capitol on the eve of the Legislature’s 2020 session.

The 18-member Joint Committee on Appropriations opens work at 10 a.m. CT in room 362.

Bureau of Finance and Management Commissioner Liza Clark will present proposed adjustments for the current budget year that ends June 30, as well as the latest expectations for the 2021 state budget that starts July 1.

Governor Kristi Noem publicly delivered her budget recommendations December 3. Clark is a top member of her staff.

The 10-member Government Operations and Audit Committee meets at 2 p.m. CT in room 362 to review the revised performance indicators from state Education Secretary Ben Jones.

The six members of the Rules Review Committee gather at 4 p.m. CT in room 363 to talk about a possible rewrite of chapter 1-26, the state laws on administrative procedures.

The 2020 session officially opens Tuesday at noon CT. The governor delivers her second State of the State speech to lawmakers at 1 p.m.

In her January 3 weekly column, the Republican governor focused on keeping resolutions. One was better relations with lawmakers.

“As governor, I also recognize the importance of building strong relationships. Throughout 2019, I worked to develop connections with members of the legislature. This year I want to improve communication, foster stronger relationships, and work more effectively on behalf of all South Dakotans,” Noem wrote.

The House has 59 Republicans and 11 Democrats. The Senate has 30 Republicans and five Democrats.

This week, the Legislature invited a tribal leader, Crow Creek Sioux Chairman Lester Thompson Jr., to deliver the State of the Tribes address January 16.

David Flute, the governor’s secretary of tribal relations, previously planned to deliver the speech. Elected tribal officials gave the remarks in past years. Responding to what some felt was a snub, various tribal leaders had begun organizing a rival event in Fort Pierre for January 16.

Noem also addressed the relationship between state government and tribal governments in the resolutions column.

“Additionally, I’m committed to strengthening alliances with tribal leaders. Before session even starts, I will be attending a tribal summit with several tribal chairmen and presidents in order to hear more about the issues impacting Native American communities. We have so much more in common than we have at odds, and this year, I will work to connect our communities in new and meaningful ways,” the governor wrote.

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