It is Sunday and I am on my way home from a whirlwind week of travel across the beautiful state of South Dakota and what a week it was! On Wednesday, at 9:30 a.m. I had the opportunity to present our Grassland Tax Relief Bill to the Bennett County Commissioners in Martin, SD.
The meeting was very well attended including the Bennett County Director of Equalization, and local ranchers. We had enthusiastic support for our bill and the commissioners issued a resolution of support for the legislation.
From Martin, SD we headed east to Pierre for the Executive Board Meeting Wednesday and Thursday at the capitol. In this two-day session, we reviewed and approved the final reports from the interim committees including Marijuana Task Force, Workforce Housing, Mental Health of First Responders, AG Land Assessment Task Force, Code Commission, Joint Committee on Appropriations, Government Operations and Audit Committee, Interim Rules Review Committee and State-Tribal Relations. I appreciate and applaud all of the committee’s hard work during the interim session.
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Friday, we headed to Sioux Falls. Legislators from across the state were invited to attend the Legislative Breakfast hosted by the South Dakota Farm Bureau Federation. It was titled “Table Talk: Food and Climate Conversations.” Table Talk was meant to emulate conversations we have around the kitchen table with family and friends. As I walked into the banquet room it was heartwarming to see so many familiar faces of fellow legislators from across the state. The morning’s discussion panel included Senator Duval, Senator Crabtree and Representative Soye. As members of the recent redistricting committee, they reviewed the redistricting process and the final map that was eventually signed by the governor. My primary purpose for making the trip to Sioux Falls was to support our Agriculture community and to take the opportunity to speak with the Farm Bureau’s President about Draft Bill 50 and I did just that! It is exciting to see the enthusiastic momentum for Draft Bill 50 building (more news to follow) and I’d like to take the opportunity to thank all the people and organizations for their support of Draft Bill 50 and for our ranchers.
Next on the trail was to take the short trip across Sioux Falls to attend the GOP Campaign training course at the South Dakota Military Alliance. This is a training opportunity for current and prospective office holders throughout the state to listen to the newest, latest, greatest information on campaign strategies. I know, it’s seems too early to be talking about the next election, but when you are a candidate, the plans begin months ahead of the actual voting cycle. Once again, good information and time well spent.
That brings us to Sunday, our final travel day on the road (for this week anyway). Beginning the day the right way, we joined our friends Rick and Joyce Vasgaard, for breakfast at the Original Pancake House in Sioux Falls. Rick is a fellow Legislator from District 17, so we knew that a lively conversation and a delicious meal was in store for us, before turning our attention to heading home.
I have to admit that I am looking forward to getting home to friends and the peace and quiet of the southern black hills. But first, I’d like to wish you and yours a wonderful Thanksgiving. Thanksgiving Day is the perfect time to remind one another of the many reasons we have to be thankful.
I am thankful for my husband and grateful that he is my partner in every aspect of our life together, for my children, my granddaughter and for the freedoms we are afforded by living in South Dakota. As you gather to celebrate Thanksgiving with family and friends, I pray that you too will take the opportunity to count your blessings and appreciate the amazing gift of freedom we have by living in South Dakota and don’t forget to turn your bathroom scales back 15 pounds Wednesday night at 1 a.m. for Thanksgiving!
Representative Trish Ladner, District 30