The State House of Representatives passed House Bill 1213 Thursday, to establish a task force to analyze and promote economic development for Native American’s in South Dakota. Republican State Representative Don Haggar says improving the quality of life for the Native American population is a must.
"When you hear people from outside the state talk about us, they’ll mention Mt. Rushmore but they’ll also mention the high levels of poverty on our nine reservations," Representative Haggar says. "And that’s right, there is a significant level of poverty on the reservations; extremely high levels of unemployment. Some of the reservations have unemployment levels of over 70 percent."
Representative Haggar and other proponents to House Bill 1213 say this bill is a step in the process of empowering economic development on tribal lands. This bill passed the house unanimously, with two excused, and it goes next to the Senate.