Changes in state budget looming
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Changes in state budget looming

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I don’t know where to start. Let’s just cut to the chase, realizing we’re in the middle of the biggest crisis of our lives. Here’s a list of helpful nuggets of information:

- Covid@sd.gov is our states information website. It’s updated at noon daily. If you don’t have internet, access via phone 1-800-997-2880.

- This pandemic could get worse before it gets better. It could last another 8-10 weeks, but we are not sure. 

- If you’re having trouble paying state taxes, our Dept. of Revenue number is 1-800-829-9188 or dor@sd.gov

- Federal tax filing deadline has been moved from April 15 to July 15.

- Over 130 school districts are distributing meals to students since schools have been closed.

March 30 is Veto Day for our legislature. We traditionally all go back to Pierre and decide if we’re going to override any vetoes from our governor. Now, with the revenue projections way down from when we left Pierre on March 12, we are going to have to revisit the budget. It is the responsible thing to do. It’s going to be hard, gut-wrenching work, but we as a state, as per our state constitution, we cannot deficit spend.

There are currently 80 pieces of legislation on Gov. Noem’s desk awaiting her signature. Some deal with social issues, but many spend millions of dollars of our tax revenue.

Only God knows how drastic our state economy will be affected. That being said, my recommendation to our governor is to veto all legislative bills that deal with expenditures. Then we as a legislative body can decide which pieces of legislation we want to override. We need to do this in a very fiscally responsible way. All veto overrides need a two-thirds vote; that is 47 out of 70 in the House of Representatives, and 24 out of 35 in our Senate.

Now is the time we need to rise to the occasion and show our true South Dakota character. We need to do what is right for ourselves, our families, our friends and neighbors, as well as our state and nation. Through the awesome power of prayer, Jesus Christ our lord and savior will guide us through this time of drastic need.

To the citizens of South Dakota and to the men and women in uniform, in honor of all who served, in respectful memory of all who fell, and in great appreciation to those who serve today, Thank You, for giving me the opportunity to represent you.

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