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Daugaard To Fill Supreme Court Vacancy In Summer


South Dakota Governor Dennis Daugaard says he will appoint a justice to a looming vacant seat on the Supreme Court.

Justice Glen Severson will retire his seat in the summer. Daugaard is term limited this year.

Unlike the US Supreme Court, the state’s highest court must take every case appealed to it. Daugaard says the volume of cases grow every year. He says there’s a workload that must be handled.

“If there’s a gap in time we can get some former justices to come and sub, or we can get some experienced circuit court judges to come a sub. But that only works a little bit," Daugaard says. "Certainly we wouldn’t want to try it for 6 months until a new governor is elected and have them start the vetting process and it’s probably going to take a few months after that. So, it would end up being a good three quarters of a good year, I would say, if I left it for the next governor. So I will fill the vacancy.”

The appointment is Daugaard’s third to the Supreme Court.

Severson represents the second Supreme Court district, which includes Minnehaha County.