South Dakota Legislative Billwatch, Feb. 25, 2016

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There has been a lot of illness and business (a very bad combination) here at American Clarion Headquarters over the past couple of weeks, and I haven’t kept up on billwatch postings like I wanted to, but here’s a quick look at some of the important bills being considered by the South Dakota Legislature today.

HB 1107 is an important bill to protect religious liberty that goes before the Senate Judiciary Committee today. It has already been passed by the House, and hopefully (since this is an election year), it might make it through the Senate this time.  We tried last year to get a much-needed religious liberty bill to protect South Dakotans from the vicious and relentless attacks of the Left, but our “Republican” supermajority legislature treated religious liberty with pure contempt then.  We’ll see if an impending election will make the mood of some of these fake conservatives any better.

HB 1182, the education sales tax increase, goes to the Senate Appropriations Committee now that it has squeaked by the House.  We’ll see if the Senate has the same appetite for a tax increase in an election year as many “Republicans” in the House did.

HCR 1017  is a resolution recognizing the good relationship between Israel and the United States. The legislation has no force of law, but is merely a statement of sentiment. The vote on it might expose some of those antisemitic sentiments out there.

HCR 1014 is another such bill, this time expressing the sentiment that the United States should take a role in protecting Christians and other persecuted religious groups around the world from the genocidal attacks of radical Muslims and others.

Be sure to keep an eye on what the legislature is doing.  Though there is a “Republican” supermajority in both houses, that means nothing these days, with most “Republicans” being little more than Democrats who put an “R” after their name. They have your liberty and your prosperity in their hands; watch them closely.

Date Committee/Chamber Bill Title
2/25
8:00 AM
Senate Judiciary HB 1107 ensure government nondiscrimination in matters of religious beliefs and moral convictions.
2/25
8:00 AM
Senate Education HB 1163 revise the periods of time during which veterans may use tuition benefits at institutions under the control of the Board of Regents.
2/25
8:00 AM
Senate Committee on Appropriations HB 1182 increase the state sales tax, the state use tax, the excise tax on farm machinery, and amusement device tax for the purpose of increasing education funding and reducing property taxes, to provide for certain school district reporting and penalties, and to declare an emergency.
2/25
8:00 AM
Senate Education HB 1189 provide for the inspection and review of a state-mandated academic achievement test taken by a student.
2/25
8:00 AM
Senate Judiciary HCR 1004 Expressing support for the property rights of ranch and range allotment owners.
2/25
12:30 PM
House of Representatives HCR 1017 Commending the nation of Israel for its cordial and mutually beneficial relationship with the United States and with the State of South Dakota.
2/25
12:30 PM
House of Representatives SB 73 clarify certain provisions regarding open meetings.
2/25
12:30 PM
House of Representatives SB 75 establish a grant program for adult community residential services designed to reduce the risk of recidivism, to provide a report to the Legislature, to make an appropriation therefor, and declare an emergency.
2/25
12:30 PM
House of Representatives SB 97 provide for the automatic removal of all petty offenses, municipal ordinance violations, and Class 2 misdemeanor charges or convictions from background check records after ten years under certain conditions.
2/25
12:30 PM
House of Representatives SB 114 make an appropriation for certain costs related to the commissioning of the USS South Dakota and to declare an emergency.
2/25
12:30 PM
House of Representatives SB 132 revise certain provisions regarding education funding.
2/25
1:00 PM
Senate HB 1123 require the Department of Health to include certain information regarding the inspection of an abortion facility on the department’s website.
2/25
1:00 PM
Senate HB 1164 provide for a special interest motor vehicle license plate for certain vehicles under certain conditions.
2/25
1:00 PM
Senate HB 1187 allow the Office of the Secretary of State to refuse to file certain documents.
2/25
1:00 PM
Senate HCR 1014 Calling for the United States to save Christians, Yazidis and people of other faiths from persecution and genocide.
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Bob Ellis has been the owner of media company Dakota Voice, LLC since 2005. He is a 10-year U.S. Air Force veteran, a political reporter and commentator for the past decade, and has been involved in numerous election and public policy campaigns for over 20 years. He was a founding member and board member of the Tea Party groups Citizens for Liberty and the South Dakota Tea Party Alliance. He lives in Rapid City, South Dakota with his wife and two children.
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