news

News
12:27 pm
Thu March 26, 2015

FEMA Allocates $250K For Non-Disaster Food & Shelter Assistance

Credit Kealey Bultena / SDPB

The federal government is directing $250,000 to South Dakota to help people with food or shelter in emergencies. That is the same amount the state usually receives from FEMA. The grant money can be used for problems housing and food problems that aren’t related to disasters.

FEMA distributes Emergency Food and Shelter Program money based on a state’s current unemployment, food insecurity and poverty data. In South Dakota, that equates to the minimum amount FEMA can provide a state.

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News
4:57 pm
Tue March 24, 2015

DUI Crash Victim's Father Reacts To Vehicular Homicide Sentence

The Spindler family stands at the sign marking Maegan Spindler's death. / March 23, 2015
Credit Gregg Spindler

The family of one victim in a violent car crash nearly two years ago says the punishment for the driver is insufficient. This week Ron Fischer, Junior was sentenced for vehicular homicide in two deaths. The judge ordered the maximum sentence, but the victim’s father says that isn’t enough.

In July of 2013, a drunk driver ran a stop sign near Pickstown, drove the minivan into a parking lot, and slammed into two people. US Fish and Wildlife workers 46-year-old Robert Klumb and 25-year-old Maegan Spindler both died in the gruesome crash.

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News
1:59 pm
Tue March 24, 2015

Dakota Midday: Sioux Falls Citizen Survey

Downtown Sioux Falls
Credit Photo by Jon Platek

In a new survey of Sioux Falls residents released on Monday, 93 percent of people rank their neighborhoods as safe and 87 percent say their quality of life in the city is either good or excellent. Overall 93 percent of respondents say Sioux Falls is a good or excellent place to live and would recommend living in the city to other people. In January, 3,000 randomly selected Sioux Falls residents received a survey asking for their opinions of the city. About thirty percent were returned.

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News
11:47 am
Tue March 24, 2015

Sioux Falls Polls Citizens

About 900 people responded to this spring’s citizen survey in the city of Sioux Falls. Ninety-three percent of people rank their neighborhoods as safe, and 87 percent say their quality of life in the city is either good or excellent. 

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News
9:57 pm
Sun March 22, 2015

Federal Officials Set Fracking Regulations

Officials with the Department of the Interior have released final standards for hydraulic fracturing activities on public and tribal lands. They say the rules will improve safety and help protect water quality.

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News
4:33 pm
Fri March 20, 2015

Governor Vetoes Three Taxation Bills

Governor Dennis Daugaard has vetoed three bills, all dealing with taxation.
 

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News - Animal Control - Rosebud
2:51 am
Thu March 19, 2015

Rosebud Sioux Council Reaffirms Animal Control Ordinances

Rosebud Sioux Tribe logo
Credit Courtesy Rosebud Sioux Tribe

The Rosebud Sioux Tribal Council met this week to discuss plans for preventing another fatal dog attack like the one that occurred last Saturday. The council’s primary goal was to act with respect toward any dogs on the reservation as well as their owners, and the tribal membership as a whole.

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News
12:08 am
Thu March 19, 2015

Lake Area Tech Recognized As One Of Nation's Top Community Colleges

Lake Area Technical Institute in Watertown is a Finalist-with-Distinction for the 2015 Aspen Prize for Community College Excellence. The school has received the honor each of the three years the Prize has been awarded.

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News
4:36 pm
Wed March 18, 2015

Noem, USDA Secretary Disagree On School Lunch Nutrition Standards

A South Dakota Congresswoman and the leader of the US Department of Agriculture are at odds over nutrition standards in school lunch programs. Representative Kristi Noem is providing lawmakers legislation that eases the dietary guidelines for meals provided by schools.  

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News
4:33 pm
Wed March 18, 2015

Trafficking Bill Stalls In US Senate

Anti-human trafficking legislation is stalled in the United States Senate, and that frustrates South Dakota’s representation in Washington, DC. Democrats in the US Senate blocked debate again Wednesday over one provision in the bill.

Legislation in the United States Senate establishes a fund to help victims of sex trafficking. Money from fines on convicted traffickers would support it. The bill includes language that stops the dollars from being used on abortions except for rape, incest, or to protect the life of a woman.

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News
2:23 pm
Wed March 18, 2015

Dakota Midday: Sioux Falls' New Human Rights Community Coordinator

Greenway amphitheater in Sioux Falls
Credit Sioux Falls Convention and Visitors Bureau

Vandhana Baireddy is Sioux Falls' first Human Rights Community Coordinator. It's a new position in the city attorney's office. City leaders say the role is important in a city with expanding diversity. Baireddy started the job earlier this month and says she'll target outreach to the diverse, underserved and vulnerable  populations in the city.

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News
1:45 pm
Tue March 17, 2015

Biodiversity Advocate To Speak At SDSU

An advocate for sustainable agriculture is bringer her perspective on feeding the world to a South Dakota college campus. Vandana Shiva is set to discuss her challenges with industrial agriculture and genetically modified crops. Shiva says people need to prioritize their health and the planet.

Genetically modified organisms (GMOs) are common in modern agriculture. India-based scientist and advocate Vandana Shiva says companies claim to want to produce more to feed people, but that doesn’t happen.

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News
1:26 pm
Tue March 17, 2015

SF Guard Unit To Deploy To Kuwait

A Sioux Falls National Guard unit is preparing to serve overseas. It’s part of Operation Enduring Freedom. The soldiers with the 196th Maneuver Enhancement Brigade are set to deploy to Kuwait next February, and they are already training for the mission.

Thirty-nine South Dakota Army National Guard members are preparing for a tour in the Middle East. The soldiers are spending the next year training for the deployment. Before they leave for Kuwait, Major Anthony Deiss says Guard members will spend a few weeks at Fort Bliss in Texas for more specific training.

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News - Dog Attack - Woman
3:29 am
Tue March 17, 2015

Lakota Woman Killed In Rosebud Dog Attack

Julia Charging Whirlwind, a long-time and valued counselor at the Rosebud Sioux Reservation's Spotted Tail Crisis Center, was killed by a pack of dogs in the small community of Swift Bear.
Credit Courtesy Derek Clairmont

A Lakota woman was killed by a pack of dogs on the Rosebud Sioux Reservation on Saturday.

The attack took place within 100 yards of the woman’s home in the small community of Swift Bear. 

Derek Clairmont is a volunteer firefighter and EMT in White River, on the Rosebud Sioux Reservation. He says he wasn’t surprised when he received notice that a woman had been attacked by dogs last Saturday afternoon.

“This is like the fourth time this had happened,” comments Clairmont.

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News - Rosebud - Dog
3:06 am
Tue March 17, 2015

Rosebud Council Weighed Contract For Dog Issue

Rosebud Sioux Tribe logo
Credit Courtesy Rosebud Sioux Tribe

Members of the Rosebud Sioux Tribal Council held an informal meeting on Sunday in an effort to avoid a recurrence of a fatal dog attack that occurred in the community of Swift Bear.

Tribal Council representative Wayne Frederick says it’s tragically ironic that discussions were being held just hours before the Saturday attack on Julia Charging Whirlwind that could have prevented her death.

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News
4:00 pm
Mon March 16, 2015

Sioux Falls Adds Human Rights Role

Sioux Falls has a new position in the city attorney’s office. It’s the Human Rights Community Coordinator. City leaders say the role is important in a city with expanding diversity. 

The first ever Human Rights Community Coordinator for the City of Sioux Falls is Vandhana Baireddy, and she’s uniquely qualified for a job that includes outreach to members of multiple ethnicities and communities.

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News
3:54 pm
Mon March 16, 2015

SD Childhood Obesity Rates Stagnate

State health experts say that more than one third of South Dakota’s children are overweight or obese. That’s according to the most recent sampling from schools across the state. The numbers aren’t much worse than the previous year but they also aren’t any better.

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News
9:05 am
Mon March 16, 2015

Glamour, Glitz & Graffiti Collide At Cheyenne River Youth Project's 'Passion For Fashion'

CRYP's Passion For Fashion 2015
Amy Varland

Residents across South Dakota donated hundreds of dresses, purses, shoes, jewelry, and makeup to help girls on the Cheyenne River Reservation get glammed up for this year’s prom. Organizers say the annual Passion For Fashion is about much more than just glamour and glitz.
 

Glamour, Glitz & Graffiti is the theme of this year’s Passion For Fashion event at the Cheyenne River Youth Project in Eagle Butte where participants choose a prom dress, shoes and accessories, and get their hair, makeup, and nails done.

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News
1:00 am
Mon March 16, 2015

Despite Lower Revenues Budget Provides Increases To Education, State Employees, Providers

  

Lawmakers have passed a budget totaling just over 4.3 billion dollars for fiscal year 2016. Even though revenue projections were down from original estimates the legislature was still able to provide increases to education, Medicaid reimbursements and state employee salaries. 

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News
12:56 pm
Sun March 15, 2015

House and Senate Pass Road Funding Bill

After hours of testimony, several amendments, and a conference committee, the House and Senate passed a measure that increases funding for roads and bridges. Senate Bill One raises several things: taxes, fees, and the speed limit on the interstate.
 

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News
12:44 pm
Sun March 15, 2015

Lawmakers Pass 2016 Budget

Lawmakers passed the state’s 2016 budget late Friday night. The budget increases school funding and employee salaries by 2%. It also increases Medicaid reimbursements to hospitals by over 1.5%. It increases Medicaid reimbursements by 2.5% to community health centers, long-term care providers and nursing homes. Despite the increases lawmakers had to cut around 10.4 million dollars from the Governor’s budget proposal due to lower than expected revenue projections.

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News
12:08 pm
Fri March 13, 2015

Innovation: Hundreds Of Girls Attend Women In Science Event

Women In Science / March 11, 2015
Kealey Bultena SDPB

More than 660 middle school girls from southeastern South Dakota are learning about careers in science and math. The Women in Science group hosted a conference Wednesday for its eleventh year. Professionals at dozens of break-out sessions and exhibits at Southeast Tech in Sioux Falls want girls to know that women can have successful careers in STEM fields. STEM stands for Science, Technololgy, Engineering and Math. 

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News
11:46 am
Fri March 13, 2015

Meth Found At SF In-Home Daycare

Credit Kealey Bultena / SDPB

Police arrested two people Thursday after they found meth in a house with an in-home daycare near a Sioux Falls elementary school. Authorities say they discovered 5.9 grams of meth divided into seven baggies. Officer Sam Clemens says police received a specific, credible tip Thursday morning and decided not to wait.

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News
11:14 am
Fri March 13, 2015

Lawmakers Pass 2% Funding Increase For Schools

Lawmakers have passed a two percent increase in education funding for South Dakota schools. State law requires an increase in school funding of at least 1.5% this year. Although the proposal goes above and beyond what is required many say the extra funding comes at a cost to local property taxpayers. 

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News
10:10 pm
Thu March 12, 2015

Bill To Increase Penalty For Buying Sex Dies On House Floor

Republican Representative Timothy Johns of Lawrence County is one of 47 lawmakers in the State House who voted against SB 95.

The State House of Representatives killed a measure that intended to crack down on sex traffickers and those who hire victims for sex.   
 
Lawmakers in the House and Senate could not agree on the language in the bill.  The measure aimed to increase the penalty for anyone who hires sex or services from someone who is a victim of sex trafficking.

Click play below to hear the rest of this story.

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News
9:52 pm
Thu March 12, 2015

Autism Insurance Bill Heads To Governor's Desk

A bill requiring certain insurance companies provide coverage for a key treatment of Autism Spectrum Disorder is on its way to becoming law. Senate Bill 190 spent Thursday in conference committee while Senators and Representatives sought a compromise on their two versions of the bill.  Senator Tim Rave says parents, providers, and insurance providers worked to come to a resolution that everyone is happy with.

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News
11:34 am
Thu March 12, 2015

The Process Of Replacing SD's US Atty

US Attorney Brendan Johnson announced his resignation on February 18, 2015.
Credit Kealey Bultena / SDPB

South Dakota now has an interim United States Attorney this week after Brendan Johnson left office. Randy Sieler is leading the office for now. Multiple factors contribute to the appointment of a new permanent federal prosecutor.

The process of replacing a United States Attorney lies in the hands of the White House Administration. Sandy McKeown is an assistance professor in political science at the University of South Dakota. She says the president fills the US Attorney position with the advice and consent of the Senate.

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News
5:34 am
Thu March 12, 2015

Transgender Athletics Bill Fails In State Senate A Second Time

A group of state lawmakers are trying to revive a bill that prohibits the South Dakota High School Activities Association from setting a policy on transgendered youth who participate in South Dakota high school sports.

The Association set guidelines that basically allow local control over the issue.   But some lawmakers say the legislature needs to decide.

Click play below to hear the rest of the story.

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News - Signed - Hadley
3:21 am
Thu March 12, 2015

"The Hadley Bill" To Be Signed By Governor

Six-year old Hadley Gjerde watches as Gov. Dennis Daugaard signs "The Hadley Bill" into law.
Credit Courtesy Sara Gjerde

It’s not often a 6-year old gets to meet the Governor…and especially not to have her own piece of legislation signed into law. But that’s exactly what’s happening today as Hadley Gjerde and her parents travel to Pierre to witness Gov. Dennis Daugaard sign “The Hadley Bill”. 

Six-year old Hadley Gjerde testified before the South Dakota State Legislature to amend the current law on the use of fireworks. State Representative Kristin Conzet witnessed Hadley’s testimony. 

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News - Law - 6-Year Old
3:11 am
Thu March 12, 2015

6-Year Old Changes State Fireworks Law

Hadley Gjerde testifies before the South Dakota State Legislature, accompanied by her father, Roy Gjerde.
Credit Photo by Sara Gjerde

It’s not often that a 6-year old gets to meet the Governor. It’s even less frequent that they get to do so as the originator of a new piece of state legislation. But that’s exactly what’s happening today as Hadley Gjerde and her parents travel to Pierre to witness Gov. Dennis Daugaard sign “The Hadley Bill” into law.

When Roy Gjerde’s daughter asked why she and her cousins couldn’t use fireworks when they came to visit after Independence Day, his answer was yet another example of the often cold, hard truth of the law…because it’s illegal.

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