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House panel rejects bill to require governor, congressional delegation to meet with Legislature
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House panel rejects bill to require governor, congressional delegation to meet with Legislature

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Phil Jensen

PIERRE | The Legislature won’t be mandating a question-and-answer session with the governor after the State of the State address with the failure Monday morning of HB1156 in the House State Affairs Committee.

HB1156 called for the governor to meet for at least an hour with a joint session of the Legislature after the State of the State address. The bill also called on the leaders of the House and Senate to arrange question-and-answer sessions for the Legislature with the members of the state’s congressional delegation.

Passage of the bill would support transparency in government and information for the public, according to the bill’s sponsor, Rep. Phil Jensen, R-Rapid City.

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Jensen said that opponents of the bill said it would “give political opponents an opportunity for mischief.” Jensen noted that legislators are accustomed to facing opposition at their cracker barrels. “Oftentimes, it seems to be vicious.”

Rep. Tim Goodwin, R-Rapid City, said Rep. Dusty Johnson and Sen. Mike Rounds have visited the Legislature this year. “Systemically, I don’t think it’s necessary,” Goodwin said of the bill.

“Sen. Thune hasn’t been here for several years,” Jensen said.

Rep. David Anderson, R-Hudson, made a motion to move the legislation to the 41st day, a tactic that kills legislation. “I just don’t think this is necessary,” Anderson said. “They’re available to us.”

The motion to kill the bill was approved on a 13-0 vote.

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